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Why Did Biden Let In Those Nicaraguan Refugees?

Summary:
The Biden administration and its acolytes in the U.S. mainstream press are celebrating the fact that Nicaraguan socialist dictator Daniel Ortega just released 222 political prisoners and sent them packing to the United States. In the process, however, they are only demonstrating the arbitrary, capricious, and hypocritical nature of America’s socialist system of immigration controls.  Ortega’s political prisoners were being held in brutal conditions in Nicaraguan prisons. Their only “crime” was opposing the Ortega dictatorship. Some of them were imprisoned for having the audacity to run against the 77-year-old Ortega in the 2021 presidential election. Ortega released his political prisoners and sent them to the United States in an attempt to garner favor with the

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The Biden administration and its acolytes in the U.S. mainstream press are celebrating the fact that Nicaraguan socialist dictator Daniel Ortega just released 222 political prisoners and sent them packing to the United States. In the process, however, they are only demonstrating the arbitrary, capricious, and hypocritical nature of America’s socialist system of immigration controls. 

Ortega’s political prisoners were being held in brutal conditions in Nicaraguan prisons. Their only “crime” was opposing the Ortega dictatorship. Some of them were imprisoned for having the audacity to run against the 77-year-old Ortega in the 2021 presidential election.

Ortega released his political prisoners and sent them to the United States in an attempt to garner favor with the Biden administration, which continues to enforce its brutal system of economic sanctions against the people of Nicaragua. Ortega’s strategy seems to be working. U.S. State Department spokesman Ned Price said that Ortega’s release of the prisoners was considered “a constructive step” and could begin a dialogue between the two countries.

But wait a minute! I thought the U.S.-Mexico border was filled with people who are seeking refugee status. How come the Biden administration happens to let this particular group of immigrants into the United States? Why didn’t U.S. immigration officials immediately deport those 222 people back to Nicaragua, just as it does to immigrants from Mexico or other Latin American countries? Why didn’t U.S. officials send them to Mexico and force them to wait there to have their applications for refugee status reviewed, as they do with others?

The answer lies in the fact that people who enter the U.S. from Mexico are poor and uneducated. Those people from Nicaragua are political elites. Many of them have college degrees. Indeed, some of them were educated in the United States. 

In other words, they don’t exactly fit the description set forth on the Statue of Liberty, a description that fits the immigrants that don’t receive such beneficial treatment by U.S. officials: “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,”

Ironically, some of the people who Ortega released served in the Ortega regime itself, which is considered to be an avowed enemy of the United States. That’s why U.S. officials have imposed sanctions on the people of Nicaragua. 

Why Did Biden Let In Those Nicaraguan Refugees?

Comandante Dos Dora María Téllez in 1979.

Consider, for example, Dora María Téllez. Back in the day, she was known as Comandante Dos. That was when she was helping to lead the Sandinista revolution against the pro-U.S. dictatorial Somoza regime. Yes, you read that right: She was fighting on the side of the socialists against a fascist regime that was aligned with the U.S. government. 

Do you remember the Contras, the group financed by the Ronald Reagan regime through its infamous Iran Contra scandal? The Contras were fighting to oust the Sandinista regime that had defeated the pro-U.S. Somoza regime. Reagan and his merry band of anti-communist interventionists said that the Sandinistas were communists. That’s why they were trying to kill them. A principal member of the group that Reagan’s people were trying to kill was none other than socialist Comandante Dos, Dora María Téllez.

Yet, today, Téllez is walking the streets of America as a free person. Couldn’t she be a communist plant sent to pave the way for a Red takeover of the United States? Where are conservative immigration-control advocates when we need them to protect us from the communists, as they did during the entire Cold War racket?

Throughout the 19th century, people suffered under brutal tyrannies like that of Daniel Ortega. What he is doing is nothing new. However, the founding foreign policy of the United States was not to intervene in the internal affairs of other nations through force of arms to help people suffering under tyranny. 

That’s not to say, however, that the United States didn’t do anything to help people suffering under tyranny. What our American ancestors did was establish a system of open immigration. The message Americans sent out to the world was: “Our government will not come to help you, but if you are able and willing to escape, know that there is always one nation that will accept you and not deport you back to the tyranny from which you fled.”

Thus, for more than 100 years, our founding principles included non-interventionism and open immigration. Yet, today, those founding principles have been turned upside down. The U.S. government has become the greatest purveyor of interventionist violence in the world. At the same time, it has an immigration-control system that favors the political elite of the world and consigns the rest to death and suffering.

It’s a good thing that those Nicaraguan immigrants have been able to come and stay in the United States, but it shouldn’t depend on the permission or consent of U.S. officials. Those refugees should be free to come to the United States as a matter of right. And so should anyone else in the world, no matter how poor or uneducated they might be.


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Jacob G. Hornberger
Jacob G. Hornberger is founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation.

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