Monday, October 15, 2007

More on the Mexico route

The New York Times advances a story that the Herald broke weeks ago, with lots of new detail on the way U.S.-based smugglers have adapted to Coast Guard interdiction efforts by bringing Cubans to Florida via Mexico, as opposed to directly across the Straits. It’s reminiscent of the way drug traffic from the Andes shifted years ago in response to Caribbean interdiction, moving west to the Central American “land bridge.”

Fast boats, satellite phones, easy coastlines, safehouses with rice and black beans, flights from southern Mexico to the U.S. border, coaching on what to say at the U.S. border post – it’s all there. Then this:

“Some Mexicans are even getting ideas from the Cubans. A trade is developing in Cuban identity documents and some savvy Mexican migrants are now practicing Cuban accents and rehearsing dramatic stories they intend to tell United States Border Patrol agents about the horrors they have suffered in Havana.”

So if they have Cuban documents, a Cuban accent, and a Cuban life story to tell, U.S. agents at the border will have to test knowledge of Cuban Spanish to separate the real Cubans from the pretenders. What word or phrase would you use, that no non-Cuban would ever know?

1 comment: said...

If the immigrant can repair a car engine with a toothpick and piece of gum, he's a Cuban.