Tuesday, 15 July 2014
Oh, That Railway?
It's an interesting story, which goes back to the early 1990's and the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
At the time, some folks pushed as part of the package a port deal in Mexico, which would connect to a railway....thus unloading ships from China (at a much lesser rate) then putting the cargo onto railways that cross Mexico and lead into Texas, New Mexico or California.
The graphic above shows the general routes through Mexico. If you notice the end lines on the south part of the map....those are adjacent to El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala.
So you as a 13-year-old Salvadoran would cross the border into Mexico....make your way to Tapachula.....wait for a train leaving for the north, and in a week or two....you'd be at the US border....then walk across.
The curious thing about this railway? In 2005, it was bought by Kansas City Southern. It's a Mexico division....so the profits can stay in Mexico (rather than be taxed by the US).
Yeah, our little piece of NAFTA.....which took about ten years to develop....is now part of the rail access method of getting the illegal kids to the border. What will halt it? Nothing. No one will stop the railway.....nor put up a fence at the border.....or enforce any law (on either side of the border).
The odds of CNN or any major network chatting about this? Virtually zero. You could go and put some reporter and camera crew on the railway cars, and tape the 120-odd-hour trip getting up to the border. It'd be awful easy to tell this story and how we really screwed up. But, that's not what the media cares much about.