A voice was heard in Tornillo

Then was fulfilled what had been spoken through the prophet Jeremiah:

     “A voice was heard in Ramah,

         wailing and loud lamentation,

     Rachel weeping for her children;

         she refused to be consoled,

               because they are no more.” (MATTHEW 2:17-18)


Located about five miles north of Jerusalem, Ramah was one of the towns through which Jerusalem’s people passed on their way to exile in Babylonia. Doubtless, in the confusion—and in the midst of unimaginable brutality—families were torn apart, and children were separated from their parents. Inevitably, some would die—and many would never be reunited. It was a place of wailing and loud lamentation.

Located scarcely five miles north of Chihuahua, Mexico is the town of Tornillo, Texas, the site of a new child detention centre erected by the US government earlier this month. It is a Department of Health and Human Services tent city. Opened on June 10, 2018, it had an initial capacity of 360 beds—but it has room for expansion to up to 4,000 beds.

The Tornillo facility holds some of the children who have been forcibly separated from their parents as part of the Trump administration’s “zero-tolerance policy” toward illegal immigrants. Most of these “illegals” are families who’ve been forced into exile from their homes in Central America due to dangerous conditions in those countries. Once they arrive in the US, they face criminal prosecution, and—apparently as a ruthless deterrent worthy of the Third Reich—their children, including infants, are taken from them and interned elsewhere, often at distant locations.

However, the facility at Tornillo is by no means the only child concentration camp operated by the US government. Others—including a particularly notorious one at Brownsville, Texas—currently hold up to 2,300 underage prisoners, whose only crime is that their parents desperately sought refuge from violence and death threats in their home countries. Each and every one of these camps stands in stark testimony to the brutality and heartlessness of the current US administration.

But just when you thought it couldn’t get worse …

Yesterday, with a stroke of the pen he was always quite able to wield, Donald Trump did (with much fanfare and more self-justification) reverse his own abominable policy, opening the door to—eventually—reuniting these child prisoners with their distraught parents.

Except, it seems, that may not be so easy. It would seem that very little care has been taken to document the family origins of these kids.

That’s right. While tearing nursing infants from their mothers’ breasts, US officials apparently did not bother to keep track of which infant belonged to which mother. Or to consider that non-English speaking toddlers who don’t even know their mothers’ full names might not be able to give them a cellphone number.

According to a former U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement head, there may be “thousands” of children who will never be reunited with their parents. http://theweek.com/speedreads/780151/former-ice-chief-predicts-many-migrant-children-never-reunited-parents

Presumably, these kids will wind up in some kind of American social services limbo, perhaps being offered up for adoption to US families.

Perhaps. And perhaps that’s the best we can hope for these now-stateless children, held in the middle of the southwest desert.

Because, you know … as it’s been said before …

The desert is a great place to hide bodies.

I wouldn’t put anything past the Americans, any more.

If there is “a special place in hell” for Canadian prime ministers who dare to offer mild criticism of US trade policies, surely the inner circle of hell must be reserved for American politicians who heartlessly use children and babies as pawns in a cold political game.

Shame on you, Donald Trump. Shame on you, US Congress. Shame on you, America.

Keep watch that wailing and loud lamentation not befall you and your own families. Keep watch. Keep looking over your shoulders. For if the Bible teaches us anything, it’s this: God’s justice is real. And His judgment does fall upon the unrighteous nation.

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