• Avakov: Ukraine’s wall along Russian border nearly half complete

    Ukraine has built almost half of its 2,300-kilometer wall on the border with Russia, Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said on Nov. 24 during his visit to the border checkpoint in Kharkiv Oblast.

    “The project has been extended until 2021,” Avakov said. “The budget plan for the 2019 allocates Hr 400 million ($14.4 million) for it. But the head of the Border Guard Service hopes to receive additional funds.”

    The Kharkiv section of the Ukrainian-Russian wall has been almost completed with only 20 kilometers left, according to Avakov. The works will continue on the border sections in Sumy and Luhansk oblasts. It includes fortifications with a barbed wire fence, two-meter deep anti-tank trenches, 17-meter-high watchtowers, 40 border checkpoints as well as equipment with motion sensors, border security closed-circuit television (CCTV) and alarm systems.

    Overall, 47 percent of the 2,300-kilometer wall has been built, the minister said.

    In addition, starting from January, Ukraine has launched the biometric control system for Russian passport holders at all border-crossing checkpoints.

    Former Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk, who is running for president in the upcoming March presidential elections, joined Avakov on the trip to the border in Kharkiv Oblast on Nov. 24.

    The ambitious project known as the European Wall was announced by then-Prime Minister Yatsenyuk in 2014 in the wake of the Russian military intervention in the Donbas. Ukraine lost control over parts of Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts and 400 kilometers that border with Russia. The wall was designed to protect Ukraine from further attacks on its territory as well as to stop illegal flow of weapons from Russia.

    In the aftermath of the EuroMaidan Revolution that drove pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych from power on Feb. 22, 2014, Kremlin incited mass anti-government demonstrations in eastern Ukraine and occupied Crimean peninsula. In Donetsk and Luhansk, protesters “declared independence” from Ukraine which escalated into an armed conflict between Ukrainian forces and Kremlin-backed forces. In April 2014, pro-Russian protesters took over the Kharkiv administration and “declared independence from Ukraine” but the Ukrainian government managed to retain control over the region.

    The construction of the wall, however, halted due to lack of funding and a corruption scandal.

    In 2015-2017, the Border Guard Serviced received Hr 800 mln ($28.8 million) — less than a quarter of the total cost of the project estimated at over Hr 4 billion ($147.6 million).

    In November 2017, the National Anti-Corruption Bureau arrested eight people on embezzlement charges. NABU detectives found that the officials of the Border Guard Service in cahoots with local contractors had siphoned off Hr 16.68 million ($600,800) from the Project Wall funds.


    #Ukraine #Russie #murs #frontières #barrières_frontalières

  • PRE-ORDER: Build the Wall (#MAGA building blocks toy)

    We are pleased to announce the launch of a brand new line of toys: MAGA building blocks! This set comes with more than 100 pieces including President Trump in a MAGA hard hat!

    A mob of 10,000 Central American migrants is marching through Mexico and heading toward El Paso, Texas. Mexican border agents attempted to stop them at the Mexican border, but to no avail.

    We understand why they want to flee Honduras and live and work in America. After all, we are the greatest nation on earth.

    In the interest of national security, however, we cannot allow just anyone and everyone to cross our borders. While there are good people attempting to enter our nation, there are also gangs, criminals, and terrorists. Everyone who wants to enter our country must enter legally for the safety of all.

    The wall must be built. The wall will keep America safe and strong. Only then will we be able to help those in need.

    We are pleased to announce the launch of a brand new line of toys: MAGA building blocks! This toy makes a great Christmas gift for your kids and grandkids!

    101 Pieces
    Includes President Trump figurine w/ a MAGA hard hat!

    #légo #enfants #enfance #jeu #jeux #murs #frontières #barrières_frontalières #fermeture_des_frontières

  • Arizona border residents speak out against Donald Trump’s deployment of troops

    Residents from Arizona borderland towns gathered Thursday outside the Arizona State Capitol to denounce President Donald Trump’s deployment of at least 5,200 U.S. troops to the U.S.-Mexico border.

    The group of about a dozen traveled to Phoenix to hold the event on the Arizona State Capitol lawn. The press conference took place as a caravan of migrants seeking asylum continues to move north through Mexico toward the United States.

    “The U.S. government response to asylum seekers has turned to military confrontation,” said Amy Juan, a member of the Tohono O’odham Nation, who spoke at the event on the Arizona State Capitol lawn.

    “We demand an end to the rhetoric of dehumanization and the full protection of human rights for all migrants and refugees in our borderlands.”

    Juan and her group said many refugees confronted by military at the border will circumvent them by way of “dangerous foot crossings through remote areas.”

    “Already this year, hundreds of remains of migrants and refugees have been recovered in U.S. deserts,” Juan said. “As front-line border communities, we witness and respond to this tragedy firsthand.”

    While she spoke at a lectern, others held a sign saying, “Troops out now. Our communities are not war zones.”

    As the press conference unfolded, the Trump administration announced a plan to cut back immigrants’ ability to request asylum in the United States.

    Those from Arizona borderland towns are also concerned that border communities, such as Ajo, the Tohono O’odham Nation, Arivaca and others, may see an increased military presence.

    “I didn’t spend two years in Vietnam to be stopped every time I come and go in my own community,” said Dan Kelly, who lives in Arivaca, an unincorporated community in Pima County, 11 miles north of the U.S.-Mexico border.

    A major daily hiccup

    Many border-community residents complain the current law enforcement presence, absent the new U.S. troops, creates a major hiccup in everyday life.

    “Residents of Arivaca, Ajo, the Tohono O’odham Nation, they are surrounded on all sides by checkpoints. They are surrounded on all sides by border patrol stations. Every time they go to the grocery store, they pass a border patrol vehicle,” said Billy Peard, an attorney for ACLU Arizona.

    Juan says she gets anxiety from these checkpoints because she has been stopped and forced to get out of her car while federal agents and a dog search for signs of drugs or human smuggling.

    Juan calls the fear of these type of situations “checkpoint trauma.”

    “It’s really based upon their suspicions,” she said of authorities at checkpoints. “Even though we are not doing anything wrong, there’s still that fear.”

    Many of those speaking at Thursday’s event accused the federal government of racial profiling, targeting Latino and tribal members. They said they are often subjected to prolonged questioning, searches, and at times, harassment.

    “A lot of people can sway this as a political thing,” Juan said. “But, ultimately, it’s about our quality of life.”

    #murs #barrières_frontalières #résistance #asile #migrations #réfugiés #frontières #USA #Etats-Unis

  • Trump border wall construction underway in #Chihuahuita in Downtown #El_Paso

    Construction of the border wall in the Chihuahuita neighborhood of Downtown El Paso continued Wednesday beneath the Stanton Street International Bridge. The U.S. Border Patrol announced Friday that the new wall would replace existing fencing south of Downtown El Paso and that construction would begin Saturday as part of President Donald Trump’s executive order authorizing construction of the U.S.-Mexico border wall.
    The wall starts in Chihuahuita and continues east for four miles. Chihuahuita is El Paso’s oldest neighborhood, with about 100 people currently living in the area. The southern boundary of the neighborhood is the border fence separating El Paso from #Juárez.

    The existing fence will be removed, and an 18-foot-high steel bollard wall will be constructed in its place. The construction project is expected to be completed in late April. The estimated cost for the project is $22 million.

    #murs #barrières_frontalières #frontières #mexique #usa #Etats-Unis

    • Border Wall Gate Construction Begins Friday

      Construction of several border wall #gates along the Rio Grande Valley border is set to begin Friday.

      U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Army Corps of Engineers awarded a contract to #Gideon_Contracting LLC in early October.

      The agencies approved over $3.5 million for the San Antonio-based company, which is set to install the first seven border wall gates and includes options for four additional gates.


    • TPWD: Border wall will be built on #Bentsen State Park property in Mission

      The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department has confirmed the border wall will be built on #Bentsen_State_Park property in Mission.

      The department wrote several letters to Customs and Border Protection on their concerns on the border wall, even suggesting an alternative design.

      According to Josh Havens, spokesperson for Texas Parks and Wildlife he says since the federal government has federal domain over the park, construction will go as planned.

      Bentsen State Park is considered to be one of the top bird watching destinations in Texas.

      “At first, we came for three or four days. Last year, we came for seven and this time we are coming for eight days,” said Charles Allen, who has been visiting the park for several years now.

      Allen says the border wall would be a setback for the park.

      “It would really be a disaster for the plants and the butterflies and for people who come to visit,” stated Allen.

      CBP announced the construction of the border wall on the IBWC levee earlier this month.

      The levee stretches through Mission and lies on park property.

      “The federal government has confirmed with us that the initial six miles, I believe, of the construction of the wall is going to go across the levee that is at Bentsen Rio Grande Valley State Park,” said Havens.

      According to Havens, the construction will split the park into two, separating the main visitor center from the rest of the park.

      CBP plans to clear out 150 feet south of the levee for the construction, according to Havens.

      “The native plants here have some purpose either a butterfly or several butterflies, or moths or some other birds or other larger animals,” said Allen.

      Havens says they are aware of the ecological importance the vegetation of the park has and is planning to work with CBP on minimizing the vegetation loss.

      Still park visitors feel there should be something else done to protect the park.

      “I hate to see them tear this park in half can there be other way to be done? I’m sure there are options,” mentioned Larry McGuire, a winter Texan who visits the park.

      According to Havens, it is way too early to tell if the park will close after the construction of the border wall.

      They will have to gauge visitation after construction to determine that.


  • Tear Down Walls, Those Manifestations Of Superficial Thinking – OpEd – Eurasia Review

    By Jonathan Power*

    At first I was a bit surprised to find that the English admonition, “Good fences makes for good neighbours” exists in many other languages. I shouldn’t have been taken aback. A moment’s reflection should have told me that fences and walls to divide off peoples have been going on for millennia.

    There’s nothing in particular new about the fence between the U.S. and Mexico, the Cold War wall between East and West Germany or the one between Israel and the Palestinian West Bank. Look at the Great Wall of China.

    The Mexicans have a joke about the planned wall to replace the fence. “It’s not built to keep Mexicans out of the U.S.; it’s built to keep Donald Trump out of Mexico!”

    #murs #frontières

  • 5200 troops. 23 apprehensions. In. ONE. Year.

    In fiscal 2018, the average Border Patrol agent apprehended 23 migrants. All year.

    9 of them would’ve been kids and family members, leaving 14 single adults, all year. One per agent, every 26 days.

    And now, at great expense, 5,200 active-duty soldiers are headed to the border.

    75% less migrants since 2000. Nearly 5X more Border Patrol agents since 1992. The buildup has happened already, and the migrant flow has ebbed. Adding soldiers is unnecessary.


    #murs #efficacité #inefficacité #USA #Etats-Unis #statistiques #frontières #barrières_frontalières #contrôles_frontaliers #militarisation_des_frontières #statistiques #chiffres
    ping @reka

  • Marseille : le mur de la honte

    Comme ultime réponse à la contestation populaire contre son projet piloté par la #Soleam, société d’aménagement, la mairie de Marseille monte un mur de béton entre les habitants et #La_Plaine, pour la « réaménager » par l’agence #APS. Marseille prend ainsi le visage du Mexique, de Belfast, de Gaza, ou de Berlin en 1961.

    #murs #Marseille #séparation #division #barrières #villes #urban_matter #France #ville_divisée #divided_cities #frontières #frontières_urbaines #murs_intra-urbains

    • Le mur du mépris - La Plaine 2018

      Berlin ? Belfast ? Mexique ? Gaza ? Non, aujourd’hui c’est à la Plaine que la mairie et les flics, main dans la main, ont décidé d’ériger un gigantesque mur de béton pour tenter d’écraser toujours plus le quartier. Retour en photo et en vidéo sur le musellement de la place...

      (Petite mise au point : un certain nombre de lecteur/lectrices ont souligné que la comparaison avec les murs de Gaza, Berlin etc. était peut-être un peu abusive ou malencontreuse. Effectivement, les réalités des murs érigés en Palestine, à la frontière Etats-Unis-Mexique, ou par le passé à Berlin, sont toutes autres. A la Plaine, point de miradors, de contrôles d’identité et de militaires. L’intention n’était pas de mettre sur un même niveau ces réalités totalement différentes, mais simplement de souligner les comparaisons qui sont sur toutes les lèvres des habitant.e.s du quartier, aussi approximatives soient-elles...)

      Tout le monde s’y attendait, mais personne n’osait y croire. Gérard Chenoz tient ses promesses : quand il veut éradiquer les quartiers populaires, et bien il met tout en oeuvre pour y parvenir. Histoires de pouvoir et de pognon, c’est certain. Mépris de classe assurément.

      Et là où le gentrifieur en chef tient aussi ses promesses, c’est dans son goût prononcé pour la manipulation. Il a quand même trouvé moyen de jouer la victime dans la presse, et tenter de renverser médiatiquement la vapeur. Selon ses atermoiements, s’il est nécessaire d’installer ce mur de la honte, c’est à cause de la révolte des habitant.e.s et usager.e.s de la Plaine. Si ce mur coûte près de 400000 euros de plus aux 20 millions déjà faramineux du projet, c’est à cause de la plèbe qui exprime sa colère. Et, pirouette finale, s’il y a 400000 euros à débourser en plus, ce sera bien à la charge des contribuables, et ce, à cause, évidemment, du peuple de la Plaine opposé aux travaux. La boucle est bouclée : l’exorbitant coût des travaux est directement imputable aux plainard.e.s ! Roublard le Gérard, non ?

      Mais ça n’est pas un problème pour lui, ni pour la mairie. Leur mur de mépris, ils le posent. Ils semblent insinuer que, désormais, le quartier est à eux... Pourtant, rien n’est fini. Le quartier ne veut pas de leur aménagement à coup de matraque, de mur et de béton. Le quartier se battra jusqu’au bout pour arrêter ce chantier dont personne ne veut.

      Voici un excellent retour par Primitivi sur le début de l’installation du mur lundi 29 octobre, et sur la conférence de presse qui l’a précédé :


    • Et à #Bure... les murs ont tombé... c’est ce qui est rappelé sur les réseaux sociaux concernant le mur de Marseille :

      En fait on a déjà vu ce type de murs à Bois Lejuc (#Bure) il y a deux ans ... et les murs étaient tombés


      Les murs tombent dans le #Bois_Lejuc !

      Aujourd’hui, près de 500 personnes, jeunes, moins jeunes, militant-e-s de tous les horizons, habitant-e-s, agriculteurs, ont réinvesti le Bois Lejuc et procédé à sa remise en état dans une atmosphère festive et déterminée. Plusieurs centaines de mètres de pans de mur illégalement érigés ont été abattus, d’autres redécorés, des arbrisseaux plantés. Quelques plants de légumes plantés lors de l’occupation de la forêt du 19 juin au 7 juillet, rescapés de la reprise de la forêt par l’Andra, ont même été repiqués.
      deco190Militant-e-s récemment mobilisé-e-s et opposant-e-s de la première heure se sont retrouvé-e-s à l’ombre des arbres libérés pour pique-niquer et refaire le monde sur les ruines du mur. Avec la chute de ce mur, ce n’est pas seulement un symbole de la violence et du passage en force de l’Andra qui est tombé ; c’est aussi la chape de plomb de la fatalité et de la résignation qui s’est fissurée.

      down2Cette fronde populaire est une saine et légitime défense face au rouleau compresseur de l’Andra, prête à tout pour imposer CIGÉO (emploi de vigiles surarmés, mépris des lois, mépris des décisions de justice). Les centaines de personnes arrivées dans le bois ont pu constater l’ampleur des dégâts infligés à la forêt : coupes dans des futaies de jeunes arbres, nouvelles et larges saignées dans les taillis… Certains indices laissent d’ailleurs penser que l’Andra a poursuivi ce défrichement illégal même après la décision de justice du 1er août. Nous attendons avec impatience les échéances juridiques à venir.

      Face à l’étendue des dégâts et la mauvaise foi de l’Andra, il nous semble plus qu’essentiel de continuer à défendre la forêt dans les jours et semaines à venir !


    • Dans le numéro de @cqfd en kiosque actuellement

      #Urbanisme à la tronçonneuse – La Plaine emmurée > La mairie y croyait dur, à son opération table rase sur La Plaine. Et, la mort dans l’âme, le quartier s’y préparait. Une fois chassés les gens du marché, la résistance allait faiblir. Gérard Chenoz, adjoint (LR) aux Grands projets d’attractivité et maître d’œuvre des travaux de requalification de la place Jean-Jaurès, s’en était vanté auprès du site Marsactu : « Une Zad sur La Plaine ? Dans dix jours c’est fini. » Il aura finalement fallu un mois riche en surprises, et un mur de béton de 2,5 mètres de haut ceinturant l’esplanade, pour que le chantier démarre vraiment. Le Marseille populaire n’a pas dit son dernier mot.


    • Heureusement, ces murs seront « embellis et habillés » par des « artistes, peintres urbains et graffeurs [...] dans le respect de l’identité de la place Jean Jaurès, connue pour être un lieu incontournable du street art ». Peindre en rose un mur de séparation, un crachat au visage du quartier, ne le rend pas plus agréable ni « respectueux ». Par contre, ces fameux « artistes » risquent de ne pas être très bien accueillis lorsqu’ils viendront. Devra-t-on bientôt voir des « street-artistes », héritiers de l’art vandale, protégés par la police ? Ce serait un comble.

      Pour l’anecdote, on apprend aussi que « les accès aux immeubles résidents sont maintenus » pendant la durée des travaux. C’est gentil ça, de laiser les gens rentrer chez eux.


      formulé par la Soleam :

      Mesure de sécurité aussi regrettable qu’indispensable, ces barrières deviendront un espace d’expression. Un collectif d’artistes leur donnera une note artistique. Ces peintres urbains et graffeurs travailleront à égayer le nouveau dispositif de sécurité, dans le respect de l’identité de la place Jean Jaurès, connue pour être un lieu incontournable du street art.


      Leur rêve :

      Un positionnement géographique idéal, un port enfin dynamique et plutôt smart, des grandes entreprises qui agissent comme locomotives, des entrepreneurs qui ne restent pas indifférents aux évolutions du territoire, des startups à foison et, cerise sur le gâteau, un climat clément qui rend le business plus sympathique sous le soleil.

      «  Nous voulons nous servir du langage de la tech pour hacker les cerveaux des plus jeunes et leur donner accès à la culture.  »

      « Il faut repenser la configuration des quartiers. Tout détruire et tout reconstruire de façon différente en utilisant une situation géographique exceptionnelle . Cela doit s’accompagner d’une politique plus sociale. » Et de plaider pour un « plan Marshall urbanistique » . Mais aussi pour un centre-ville qui aurait tout intérêt à devenir piéton, gagnant ainsi des points d’attractivité supplémentaire, ne serait-ce qu’au niveau touristique.

      Qui voudrait aussi plus de bleu et de vert, « une ville propre, bien éclairée qui serait devenue le leader mondial de l’éolien flottant, qui aurait un grand port lequel aurait dépassé Miami en termes de nombre de croisiéristes. »


      Un cauchemar !

      source de l’article : #twittoland
      #urbanisation #métropolisation #bétonisation

    • Marseille : lettres de la Plaine

      Alors que nous nous apprêtions à boucler l’édition de ce lundi, édition dans laquelle une lettre de la Plaine annonçait aux pouvoirs publiques que le mur de béton de 2m50 construit à la hâte pour protéger la destruction de l’une des dernières place populaire de Marseille, ne manquerait pas de tomber, nous recevons cette nouvelle missive. Le mur est donc partiellement tombé et éclaté sur le sol. Cela valait évidemment une nouvelle lettre aux élus.

      Chers Jean-Claude, Gérard & Jean-Louis,
      On voulait vous prévenir, votre mur il est malade, certaines parties ont dû être abattues.
      C’était pas sécur’.
      On a pensé à la transplantation mais c’est vrai que trois tonnes chaque morceau du mur, c’est beaucoup.
      Ceci dit, on vous trouve un peu léger.
      On a comme l’impression que vous avez du mal à estimer le poids du refus.
      C’est qu’il est bien plus lourd que votre mur.

      C’est bizarre d’être à ce point à côté de la plaque.
      De sous estimer autant.
      On vous pensait mieux renseignés, mieux entourés.
      On a pourtant tout fait pour vous aider.
      Les manifestations, les pétitions, les lettres…
      Trois mille personnes l’autre jour dans la rue.
      C’est peut-être Olivier de la préfecture, il ne sait pas compter, il doit mal vous renseigner.

      On est un peu triste pour vous parce que ça à l’air tout petit le monde dans vos têtes. Tout réduit.
      Bref, on vous sens fatigués, dépassés.
      On s’inquiète pour vous.
      D’autant qu’ici sur la place il se murmure que ça se lézarde dans les autres quartiers. D’ailleurs on fait une réunion cet après-midi avec les autres quartiers. Vous devriez venir, toute la ville sera là. Un grand conseil municipal.

      En tout cas, c’est gentil d’avoir remis l’électricité sur la place.
      On y voit mieux.

      Ici on a hâte de connaître votre prochaine idée. Le carnet de chèque, en tout cas, il doit pas mal tourner. On est rassurés de savoir la ville si riche. ça change.

      Au fait, pour le service après vente du mur, on vous donne les coordonnées :
      - Groupe PBM. 04 72 81 21 80
      97 Allée Alexandre Borodine - Bât Cèdre 2 - 69800 Saint-Priest.

      et puis celles du directeur des ventes, ça peut-être utile pour les réclamations
      Laurent ULLINO - Tél. 06 61 08 58 48
      laurent.ullino@pbm.fr »


    • Un quartier à cran

      Tel un orage d’été, la requalification de la place Jean-Jaurès, au cœur du quartier de La Plaine, à Marseille, s’annonce aussi incertaine que menaçante.

      À quelques jours de l’échéance, et malgré une plaquette publicitaire affirmant que tout est ficelé (on y vante sans vergogne « une démarche collective et collaborative », pour « une grande place métropolitaine, méditerranéenne, polyvalente et populaire »), tous les lots de l’appel d’offres n’ont pas encore été attribués. En revanche, des recours juridiques sont déposés au nom des forains du marché, de commerçants et de l’association La Plaine sans frontières.

      Si le cabinet APS, chargé de redessiner la place, enfume l’opinion avec des formules ronflantes promettant une « réactivation contemporaine », les premiers concernés subissent l’habituel mépris de la vieille garde municipale. Le phasage des travaux, qui aurait permis à 80 vendeurs sur 300 de cohabiter avec le chantier, est jeté aux oubliettes. Dans un courrier en date du 1er août, l’élue Marie-Louise Lota, adjointe aux Emplacements publics, annonce la « fermeture totale de la place pour des motifs de sécurité et de salubrité ». Les forains seront exilés sur huit « sites de repli », pour l’essentiel dans les quartiers Nord. Cette dispersion signerait l’arrêt de mort du marché le plus populaire de la ville.

      Autre déracinement : 87 des 191 arbres de la place devraient être arrachés. Pour endormir les consciences, l’élu Gérard Chenoz, adjoint aux Grands projets d’attractivité, et le paysagiste Jean-Louis Knidel affirment qu’ils ne seraient pas coupés, mais « transplantés ailleurs », pour « une plus grande biodiversité » !

      Consulté, un technicien forestier a démonté l’intox : une telle opération, très coûteuse, aurait dû se préparer en amont et les tilleuls adultes ont peu de chance de survivre.

      Autre fake news, la piétonisation : une voie de circulation éventrera la plus grande place de Marseille sur toute sa longueur. Pour rendre cet attentat plus sexy, les paysagistes parlent de ramblas… Aucun plan général de mobilité, aucune étude d’impact sérieuse : un effet entonnoir, ainsi que la suppression de 400 places de stationnement sans solution alternative, déporteront le chaos automobile dans les rues adjacentes.

      À des restaurateurs inquiets, Yves Moraine, maire des 6e et 8e arrondissements, a répondu avec désinvolture qu’ils seraient « bien contents de la plus-value de leurs fonds de commerce une fois le quartier réhabilité ». Il dévoile ainsi des visées spéculatives, tout en mentant éhontément : s’ils sont contraints de vendre, les commerçants le feront sur la base d’un chiffre d’affaires rendu calamiteux par trois ans de chantier.

      Autre menace : sur un espace « minéralisé », avec un « deck central » en bois où les badauds pourront « se montrer et regarder », tous les usages non encadrés et non marchands seront mal vus. Sous l’œil de 26 caméras, le carnaval indépendant, la sardinade du 1er mai, les jeux de boules ou de balle et les repas de quartier deviendront des « usages déviants ».

      Un tel équarrissage serait le point d’orgue de la reconquête d’un centre-ville trop populeux, qu’on aimerait voir basculer du côté des quartiers huppés. Sans oublier la volonté de multiplier les zones d’attractivité touristique. Preuve de l’impopularité de cette politique, les candidats de l’équipe Gaudin ont été désavoués dans les urnes, éjectés avec à peine 10 % des voix au premier tour des dernières législatives. Mais qu’importe : « Avant de prendre ma retraite, je vais nettoyer La Plaine », aurait déclaré Marie-Louise Lota.

      Plus soucieuse de réélection, la nouvelle génération LR soigne ses éléments de langage : « Je suis pour une rénovation inclusive, nous avons besoin de toutes les énergies », lance Sabine Bernasconi, maire des 1er et 7e arrondissements. Ce qui ne l’empêche pas de s’attaquer au boulodrome associatif de la place Carli, après que les bouquinistes en ont été bannis. La même phobie de toute activité populaire est là encore à l’œuvre.

      Seule force de ce projet de destruction, la division de ses adversaires. Écolos et pro-vélos sont bernés par une piétonisation cosmétique. Nombre de riverains des quartiers voisins croient que tout vaudra mieux que cette place laissée à l’abandon depuis des années. Reste le fantôme d’une Zad urbaine pour sauver les arbres, le spectre d’un coup de sang des forains et la mutation de l’assemblée de La Plaine en véritable assemblée de quartier. Qui est vivant verra.


  • Roma, un muro attorno al #Baobab «Sembra un lager per migranti»

    La denuncia dei volontari che assistono 300 rifugiati transitanti nel campo a ridosso della stazione Tiburtina. Gli operai stanno montando barriere in cemento e grate metalliche. Le Ferrovie: «Solo lavori per cantieri, abbiamo cominciato ad agosto»

    #Rome #asile #migrations #réfugiés #murs #barrières #frontières

  • #Stefano_Allievi: I confini non sono muri ma luoghi di passaggio

    «Potersi muovere è un fattore imprescindibile dello sviluppo economico e culturale. Si muovono le idee, il denaro, le merci. Gli uomini e le donne quando si muovono imparano delle cose, quando si separano dai loro luoghi d’origine vivono nuove esperienze. E spesso possono anche decidere di riportarle al loro Paese se torneranno». Incontriamo Stefano Allievi, sociologo dell’Università di Padova, all’indomani dell’uscita di 5 cose che tutti dovremmo sapere sull’immigrazione (e una da fare). Un libricino di 64 pagine edito da Laterza, dal costo di soli 3 euro, che risponde con parole semplici ed esempi chiari alle domande e ai dubbi più frequenti sul tema del secolo, che la politica, a livello nazionale ed europeo, non riesce a (o non vuole) risolvere.

    Da dove bisogna partire per parlare di immigrazione senza tare ideologiche o di altro tipo?
    Ci sono ambiti legati al tema dei migranti su cui non si riflette mai abbastanza. Quando parliamo di demografia si tende a enfatizzare soprattutto quella dell’Africa. “Fanno tanti figli, la loro popolazione si raddoppierà, la Nigeria sostituirà gli Usa come terzo Paese più popoloso al mondo”, e questo suscita terrore: “Non possiamo accogliere tutti”. E si perde di vista quello che comporta il calo demografico in atto in Europa. Dove per la prima volta nella storia si è invertita la piramide demografica per cause naturali, cioè non per effetto di una guerra, e i giovani sono molto meno degli anziani. Nelle regioni del nord per ogni under 15 ci sono due over 65. Già oggi, non in futuro. In Africa, invece, metà della popolazione ha meno di 15 anni.

    #frontières #passage #murs

    • Stefano Allievi, 5 cose che tutti dovremmo sapere sull’immigrazione (e una cosa da fare)

      Per ragionare sulle cause delle migrazioni potremmo limitarci a citare, in ordine sparso, alcune parole: guerre, fame, dittature, persecuzioni (per motivi etnici, religiosi, razziali, politici), ingiustizie subìte, diseguaglianze, calamità naturali (incluse quelle dovute al cambiamento climatico), crescita demografica non accompagnata da crescita economica. A cui va aggiunto il puro e semplice sfruttamento delle risorse (alimentari, minerarie, ecc.), fatto quasi sempre per conto terzi: anche quando gli sfruttatori sono i governi – spesso militari – dei rispettivi paesi, i terzi sono, di solito, aziende dei paesi sviluppati; e come dice un saggio proverbio africano, “se uno percuote un alveare per portare via il miele, le api lo inseguono”. Quella che precede è la lista, per difetto, dei cosiddetti push factors, o fattori di spinta. Ci accontenteremo di fare un cenno solo alle diseguaglianze di reddito e alla demografia.

      Le differenze di reddito non spiegano tutto, delle migrazioni. Esistono da sempre. E nonostante questo la maggior parte delle persone preferisce rimanere vicino alla sua famiglia, tra la sua gente, la sua cultura, con chi parla la sua lingua. Ma pesano. Il PIL pro capite (il prodotto interno lordo – ovvero la ricchezza del paese – suddiviso per il numero degli abitanti), è in Italia di 30.507 dollari l’anno.

      Quello medio dell’Unione Europea è di 39.317 dollari, quello dell’Africa subsahariana è di 3.837 dollari, e in alcuni dei paesi da cui provengono coloro che tentano di sbarcare in Italia viaggia al di sotto dei mille dollari l’anno (411 in Niger, 469 in Gambia, 795 in Etiopia, 830 in Mali, 852 in Ciad). Ora, se le diseguaglianze di reddito bastassero a spiegare le migrazioni, l’Africa sarebbe già da decenni in Europa, l’Europa negli Stati Uniti (dove il PIL pro capite è di oltre 57.000 dollari, quasi 20.000 in più che in Europa), e gli Stati Uniti a loro volta in Lussemburgo (dove è di 103.000, il più alto del mondo). E non bastano le barriere alle immigrazioni per spiegare perché non sia così: in Europa c’è la libera circolazione della manodopera, e il reddito della Germania è oltre il doppio di quello della Grecia (e i servizi e il welfare molto migliori), eppure i greci – nonostante la drammatica crisi che hanno vissuto in questi anni – in maggioranza non sono andati in Germania, e sono rimasti a casa loro (né gli altri europei sono finiti tutti in Lussemburgo, peraltro). Ma serve a spiegare perché le migrazioni siano in aumento. Del resto, chiedetevelo da soli: quanti di voi sarebbero disposti ad emigrare sapendo che, a parità di lavoro, il vostro reddito potenziale potrebbe essere di dieci o addirittura cinquanta volte tanto? In molti non stareste neanche lì a chiedervi se il costo della vita altrove è più alto... Eppure oggi – grazie ai media globali e alla rete – la ricchezza degli altri la possiamo letteralmente “vedere”, più di quanto capitasse ai nostri nonni.

      Poi c’è la demografia. La popolazione del mondo cresce: molto, e in maniera squilibrata.

      In Europa, ad esempio (Italia inclusa), diminuisce, e stiamo ogni giorno più larghi. In Africa invece cresce tumultuosamente: entro il 2050 sarà il doppio di oggi. La Nigeria, per dire, oggi settimo paese del mondo per popolazione, prima del 2050 scalzerà gli Stati Uniti dal loro tradizionale terzo posto: e già oggi i 10 Stati più giovani del mondo, con un’età media intorno ai vent’anni, sono tutti africani. La sproporzione si vede bene sul piano storico: all’inizio del

      Novecento era europeo un abitante del mondo su quattro; nel 2050 lo sarà uno su quattordici.

      Facciamo meno figli, e viviamo più a lungo, di conseguenza la popolazione invecchia, e gli anziani sono più dei giovani – i demografi la chiamano inversione della piramide della popolazione, è la prima volta che accade nella storia per motivi naturali, e ha effetti drammatici.

      Non è solo questione di risorse, di chi pagherà le pensioni e le cure mediche, sempre più care man mano che cresce l’età della popolazione – uno squilibrio che mette sulle spalle delle giovani generazioni un fardello enorme. È anche questione del tipo di paese che si va configurando: non è dagli anziani che ci aspettiamo – e che storicamente proviene – la creatività, l’innovazione, l’apertura mentale, il desiderio di scoprire nuovi orizzonti... E nemmeno il mettersi in gioco economicamente con l’invenzione di imprese, il lancio di start up, l’assunzione di manodopera. Dunque una società più anziana è anche una società depressiva e recessiva – consuma più di quello che produce, oltre che essere più triste e passiva: diciamolo, è più vicina alla morte, e vive nella sua ombra. Per invertire lo scenario occorre avere, come sempre nella storia dell’umanità, più popolazione giovane.

      Certo, potrebbe essere popolazione autoctona. Ma, semplicemente, non c’è. Per motivi legati agli stili di vita e alle trasformazioni culturali – e, per i ceti meno abbienti, anche ai costi – l’aumento del benessere ha finora portato con sé la riduzione della natalità. A spingere le migrazioni ci sono anche, oltre ai fattori di espulsione, i fattori di attrazione, i pull factors: il differenziale economico e salariale l’abbiamo già citato. Ma conta anche l’immaginario che abbiamo sugli altri paesi, che crediamo più liberi, e più ricchi di opportunità, non solo di denaro. Libertà di muoversi, di sfuggire al controllo sociale della famiglia e della comunità, di studiare quello che si vuole (e di poterlo fare perché aiutati dallo Stato, anche se si è poveri), di fare esperienze (tutte quelle legate alla condizione giovanile, incluse quelle sessuali, in società più aperte da questo punto di vista), di viaggiare, di trovare più opportunità di lavoro (per il semplice fatto che la società è più complessa e il mercato del lavoro più ampio e articolato: non ci sono solo quei tre o quattro mestieri a cui si è inevitabilmente destinati...), di essere valutati rispetto al proprio merito e non alla propria origine, di sfuggire alla corruzione dei governi e delle burocrazie, che può essere oppressiva e soffocante, fino al semplice desiderio di sposare chi si vuole, e di sperimentare le proprie capacità cercando nuove occasioni, diversificate quanto lo sono le forme del desiderio. E poi, magari – li sottovalutiamo, questi fattori, noi che li diamo per scontati –, di avere scuole e ospedali migliori e quasi gratuiti, l’acqua corrente in casa, gli elettrodomestici, i videogiochi, quattro soldi in tasca, negozi pieni di merci, le vacanze... L’Europa non se ne è accorta, ma è diventata l’America dell’Africa (e di altre aree del mondo): o per lo meno, un’America più vicina e meno irraggiungibile dell’altra, che resta ancora la più ambita. Per molti, nel mondo, la nostra è una terra dei sogni. Il fatto che non ce ne accorgiamo ci dà la misura di quanto l’Europa non sia all’altezza del proprio ruolo.

      Ecco perché non sarà facile fermare le migrazioni. Ammesso che sia auspicabile. E, a proposito: sareste d’accordo a fermare anche quelle in uscita? Perché è giusto capire in quale direzione stiamo contribuendo a far andare il mondo: è probabile infatti che saremo ripagati con la stessa moneta, se le frontiere, anziché luoghi di attraversamento, diventano muri. Ce ne stiamo già accorgendo.
      Ecco perché, anche, è necessario lavorare sulle cause delle migrazioni, sugli equilibri e gli squilibri globali, sulle ingiustizie planetarie. In una logica di scambio.

      #livre #préjugés #migrations #asile #réfugiés

  • Afghan, Pakistani forces clash over border fence

    Afghan and Pakistani border forces engaged in an armed clash over building a fence along the #Durand_Line on Sunday, local officials in southern Kandahar province said.

    Kandahar police spokesman, Zia Durani, told Pajhwok Afghan News that Pakistani forces tried this afternoon to fence a part of the Durand Line in Shorabak district of Kandahar, but Afghan border forces prevented their move.

    He said Pakistani forces in response attacked the Afghan forces and the clash was still underway. No one has so far been hurt in the battle. However, Pakistan closed down the friendship gate in #Spin_Boldak.

    A day earlier, Kandahar police chief, Gen. Abdul Raziq, said they had stopped Pakistan from fencing the Durand Line.

    He said that Pakistan started fencing the Durand Line in the southern region of the country but they stopped them.

    “Two weeks back, Pakistani forces started installation of fence on the border between Spin Boldak and #Shorabak districts of #Kandahar but border forces removed the fence and prevented them from doing so,” Raziq added.

    A year back, Afghan and Pakistani forces engaged in heavy clashes over fence installation in #Luqman and #Jahangir areas of Spin Boldak district and both the sides suffered casualties.

    Luqman and Jahangir areas are located in the zero point area of the border and they belong to Spin Boldak district.

    Pakistan forces last year conducted a population registration process in the two areas and claimed the areas belonged to Pakistan, but Afghan forces prevented them.

    The Afghan forces’ interference last year led to a fierce clash that continued for several hours, with both sides sustaining heavy casualties.

    After the clash, Afghanistan port with Pakistan was closed for 23 days that caused millions of afghanis losses to traders.

    #Pakistan #Afghanistan #murs #barrières_frontalières #frontières #disputes_frontalières



  • Mapping Who Lives in Border Patrol’s ’100-Mile Zone’ - CityLab

    Arivaca is a small, unincorporated community in Pima County, Arizona, around 11 miles north of the Mexican border. The closest big city is Tucson, 60 miles northeast. The town itself is barebones—a smattering of old buildings, some dating back to the 1800s. It is surrounded by swathes of yellow grassland.

    To get groceries or cash a check at the bank, residents often have to drive north to Green Valley, or even further, to Tucson. And to do that, they have to pass by a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) checkpoint, where they’re inevitably asked if they’re U.S. citizens.

    #états-unis #frontières #murs #démographie

  • Donald Trump urged Spain to ’build the wall’ – across the Sahara

    Spanish foreign minister says US president advised tactic to stem migration across the Med.

    Donald Trump suggested the Spanish government tackled the Mediterranean migration crisis by emulating one of his most famous policies and building a wall across the Sahara desert, the country’s foreign minister has revealed.

    According to Josep Borrell, the US president brushed off the scepticism of Spanish diplomats – who pointed out that the Sahara stretched for 3,000 miles – saying: “The Sahara border can’t be bigger than our border with Mexico.”

    #murs #Trump #Europe #Sahara #barrières_frontalières #désert_du_Sahara

  • Finland considers building border wall to block wild boars from Russia

    Finland is considering the construction of a wall on the Finnish-Russian border to prevent wild boars that can bring the African swine fever to Finland, media reports said on Monday.

    Sirpa Thessler, a senior official at the Finnish Natural Resources Agency, told public broadcaster Yle that the agency would figure out how long the wall could be and consider also the ecological impact of such a wall and the repercussions on other animals.

    The investigation has been ordered by the Ministry for Agriculture and Forestry of Finland and should be completed by the end of the year.

    The highly contagious disease has reached some Russian areas that border on Finland. It is no danger to people though.

    Finland has stepped up prevention measures to keep the swine pest out of Finland. Hunting of wild boars has been encouraged and pork production farms have been required to install additional fences if pigs are kept outdoors during summer.

    The swine pest can also be transferred via food carried by travelers. Finland has campaigned in ports with posters against meat products brought in by tourists. There are no formal customs controls for passengers entering Finland, except directly from Russia.

    “Even one sausage brought from the infected area can be fatal,” Katri Levonen, a senior official at the Ministry of Agriculture told the newspaper Maaseudun Tulevaisuus.

    She explained the infection spreads with long leaps via food, while the spreading based on direct contact with animals progresses slowly.

    Finnish officials and the pork industries were alarmed about the news that the swine fever had reached Belgium last week.

    The most western reported infection before Belgium had been the Czech Republic. Levonen said the leap from the Czech Republic to Belgium must have been with food. The infection of the Czech Republic had resulted as wild boars had been able to open a waste container, she said.

    Jukka Rantala, the production animal ombudsman of the Organization of Finnish Agricultural Producers, told Maaseudun tulevaisuus that detection of African swine fever can cause the pork exports to a standstill.

    “Much pork would remain a burden for the European market. Problems are to be expected on the European pork market,” Rantala said.

    #Finlande #murs #barrières_frontalières #Russie #frontières #sangliers #faune #infections #santé #peste_porcine

    Et pour une fois il ne s’agirait pas, en tout cas c’est ce qu’ils reportent, de bloquer les humains, mais des animaux, des sangliers en particulier...

  • Centre fédéral de Chevrilles – asile et barbelés

    Le 18 juillet 2018, Aldo Brina, chargé d’information sur l’asile du Centre Social Protestant (CSP), s’est rendu au centre fédéral de Chevrilles, aussi appelé Giffers ou Gouglera. Cette structure est la première du genre en Suisse romande (si on ose dire, puisque le centre est situé dans la Singine fribourgeoise…). Elle a pour fonction d’héberger […]

  • The wall and the city / Il muro e la città / Le mur et la ville

    The book explores the intersections between the material artifact ‘wall’ and its strategic and tactical relevance in the contemporary city. It deals with urban spatiality, public places, trajectories, and territoriality; visibility, urban surfaces, and urban visual landscape; materiality and immateriality; governmental and corporate strategies in the use of walls; writings in public space, graffiti, murals, street art, public art, outdoor advertisement, logos; use of space, right to the city, social practices, social actors, resistance, subcultures.


    Introduzione / Introduction
    Béatrice Fraenkel, Actes d’écriture: quand écrire c’est faire
    Ella Chmielewska, Writing on the ruins, or #graffiti as a design gesture
    Lorenzo Tripodi, Towards a #vertical_urbanism. Space of exposure as a new paradigm for public space
    Andrea Mubi Brighenti, Walled urbs to urban walls – and return? On the social life of walls
    Cristina Mattiucci, Il muro come dispositivo percettivo
    Claudio Coletta, Francesco Gabbi, Giovanna Sonda, Muri come trame e infrastrutture urbane. Organizzare la città attraverso sensi, pratiche, narrative, controversie
    Francesca Cozzolino, Un exemple de prise de parole sur le mur. Les #peintures_murales d’#Orgosolo
    Luciano Spinelli, Un regard vidéo participatif: les #graffitis sur le web
    Marco Solaroli, Illegal business? La costruzione dell’identità culturale dei #graffiti_writers nella pubblicità visuale: il caso #Montana
    Ricardo Campos, On urban graffiti. #Bairro_Alto as a liminal space

    #murs #villes #urban_matter #géographie_urbaine #espace_public #identité_culturelle #livre #géographie_urbaine

    Pour télécharger la version pdf, gratuitement:

  • Before the Trump Era, the “Wall” Made In Arizona as Political Performance

    “Trump’s Wall” illustrates the US obsession with ever-greater militarization of the Mexican border, independently of the actual numbers of unauthorized crossings. Yet these debates began revolving around the slogan “Build The Wall” long before the rise of Trump. Between 2010 and 2013, the activities of a coalition of activists, politicians and Arizona security experts had already legitimized recourse to a “wall”. Border-security debates thus concern more than mere control of border crossings. More crucially, they structure local and national political life in accordance with the interests and agendas of the political players whom they bring together.

    The Governors of California and Arizona reacted unevenly to President Trump’s announcement on April 4th, 2018, that National Guard soldiers were to be sent to the Mexican border1 to reinforce the Border Patrol and local police. Doug Ducey, Republican Governor of Arizona, displayed his enthusiasm: “I’m grateful today to have a federal administration that is finally taking action to secure the border for the safety of all Americans” 2. Jerry Brown, Democrat Governor of California, was more circumspect. He insisted upon the limits of such a measure: “”This will not be a mission to build a new wall […] It will not be a mission to round up women and children or detain people escaping violence and seeking a better life. […] Here are the facts: There is no massive wave of migrants pouring into California3”. These contrasting reactions illustrate the US rift over migration and border-security issues. To the anti-migrant camp, the border is insufficiently secured, and is subject to an “invasion4”. For opponents of the border’s militarization, this deployment is futile.

    On the anti-migrant side, between 2010 and 2013, Republican state congressmen in Arizona set up a unified Committee to gather all the political players who demanded of President Obama that he increases militarization of the border5. This included Sheriffs and Arizona State ministers—but also a breeders’ organization, the border Chambers of Commerce, militiamen who patrol the desert, and Tea Party groups. In May 2011, this Committee launched a fundraising drive dubbed “Build the Border Fence”. They portrayed cross-border migration as a threat to the public, consecrated the “Fence” as a legitimate security tool, and, seeking to force the hand of the Federal Government, accused it of failing in its duty to protect. Examining this mobilization prior to Trump’s election enables illustrating how militarization and the debates around it came to acquire legitimacy—and therefore to shed light on its current crystallization around the rhetoric of the “Wall”. This article will, first, briefly describe stages in the performative militarization of the border within which this political mobilization is embedded. It then presents three stages in the legitimization of the “Wall”, drawing on pro-“Border Wall” activism in Arizona.

    #Militarization by One-Upmanship

    Parsing differences over migration debates in the United States requires situating them within the framework of the long-term political performance of militarization of the border. The process whereby the border with Mexico has become militarized has gone hand in hand with the criminalization of unauthorized immigration since the 1980s-6. In the border area, militarization is displayed through the deployment of technology and surveillance routines of transborder mobility, both by security professionals and by citizen vigilantes7. The construction of “fences”8 made the borderline visible and contributed to this policy of militarization. The Trump administration is banking on these high-profile moments of wall-construction. In doing so, it follows in the footsteps of the G.W.Bush administration through the 2006 Secure Fence Act, and California Republicans in the 1990s. This is even while the numbers of unauthorized crossings are at historically low levels9, and federal agencies’ efforts are more directed towards chasing down migrants within the US. At various stages in the development of this policy, different players, ranging from federal elected officials through members of civil society to the security sector, local elected officials and residents, have staged themselves against the backdrop of the territory that had been fenced against the “invaders”. They thereby invest the political space concerned with closing this territory,against political opponents who are considered to be in favor of its remaining open, and of welcoming migrants. The latter range from players in transborder trade to religious humanitarian and migrant rights NGOs. Border security is therefore at the core of the political and media project of portraying immigration in problematic and warlike terms. Beyond controlling migrants, the issue above all orbits around reassuring the citizenry and various political players positioning themselves within society-structuring debates.
    Why Demand “Fences”?

    First and foremost, Arizona’s pro-fence players package transborder mobility as a variety of forms of violence, deriving from interpretation, speculation and—to reprise their terms—fantasies of “invasion”. In their rhetoric, the violence in Mexico has crossed the border. This spillover thesis is based on the experience of ranchers of the Cochise County on the border, who have faced property degradations since the end of the 1990s as a result of migrants and smugglers crossing their lands. In January 2013, the representative of the Arizona Cattlemen Association struck an alarmist tone: “Our people are on the frontline and the rural areas of our border are unsecured10”. The murder of an Association member in March 2010 was cited as evidence, swiftly attributed to what was dubbed an “illegal alien11”.

    “Border security also reflects domestic political stakes.”

    Based on their personal experiences of border migration, the pro-fence camp has taken up a common discursive register concerning the national stakes tied to such mobility. As Republican State Senator Gail Griffin explains, they express a desire to restore public order over the national territory, against the “chaos” provoked by these violent intrusions:

    “People in larger communities away from the border don’t see it as we do on the border but the drugs that are coming in though my backyard are ending up in everybody’s community in the State of Arizona and in this country. So it’s just not a local issue, or a county issue or a state issue, it’s a national issue 12.”

    In their view, the threat is as much to public order as it is to national identity. These fears denote a preoccupation with the Hispanization of society and cultural shifts affecting a nation that they define as being “Anglo-Saxon”. When the Build the Border Fence fundraising drive was launched on July 27, 2011, for example, Representative Steve Smith pronounced himself “horrified” by a development that he called “Press 2 for Spanish” in telephone calls. He also condemned the lack of integration on the part of Mexican migrants:

    “If you don’t like this country with you, you wanna bring your language with you, your gangfare with you, stay where you were! Or face the consequences. But don’t make me change because you don’t want to13.”

    Finally, border security also reflects domestic political stakes. It is a variable in the political balance of power with the federal government to influence decisions on immigration policy. Arizona elected representatives condemn the federal government’s inefficiency and lay claim to migration decision-making powers at the state-level. The “fence” is also portrayed a being a common sense “popular” project against reticent decision-making elites.
    “Fences”—or Virtual Surveillance?

    Control of the border is already disconnected from the border territory itself, and virtual and tactical technologies are prioritized in order to manage entry to the US. “Fences” appear archaic compared to new surveillance technologies that enable remote control. In the 2000s, the “virtualization” of border control was favored by the Bush and Obama administrations. Since 2001-2002, it has been embedded in the strategic concept of “Smart Borders” within the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). This aims to filter authorized migration through programs that grant expedited- and preregistered-entry to US ports of entry, and through the generalization of biometric technologies. This strategy also rests upon integrating leading-edge technologies, such as the Secure Border Initiative (SBI) program that was in place from 2006 to 2011. At the time, the border area (including South-West Arizona) acquired watchtowers equipped with cameras and radar. Fences are, moreover, costly—and the financial and human costs of the construction, guarding and upkeep of these fences raise doubts over the benefits of such infrastructure. These doubts are expressed at security-technology fairs, where security professionals and industrialists gather14. There, the “fence” is ultimately understood as being a marginal control technology.

    Regardless, pro-fence activism in Arizona grants a key role to those military and police who help legitimate the recourse to “fences”. In particular, they draw on such models of securitization as the California border, that has been gradually been sealed since 1991, as well as, since 2006-07, the triple-barrier of Yuma, in South-West Arizona. Sheriff Paul Babeu, an ex-military National Guardsman who erected the “fences” in Yuma, assesses that they provide a tactical bonus for Border Patrol agents in smuggling centers, urban areas and flatlands15. Mainly, Arizona security professionals articulate their defense of the “fence” within the pursuit of personal political agendas, such as Republican sheriffs who are both security and political professionals.

    Attacking the Federal Government for Failure to Protect

    The spread of the pro-fence narrative largely rests upon widely-covered events designed to symbolize the process of militarization and to call for federal intervention. The materiality of “fences” elicits easy media coverage. The pro-fence camp are well aware of this, and regularly stage this materiality. During such public events as the 4thof July national holiday, they erect fake wooden fences on which they encourage participants to write “Secure the Border”. These pro-fence political players also seek out media coverage for their public statements.

    “Republicans consecrate Arizona as their laboratory for immigration and border security policy.”

    Such media as Fox News follow their activities to the extent of turning pro-fence events into a regular series. On August 25, 2011, on the Fox News program On The Record, presenter Greta Van Susteren invited Republican Representative Steve Smith and publicized the fundraising drive using visuals drawn from the initiative’s website 16. The presenter framed the interview by gauging that Arizona parliamentarians had “got a grip on things to get the White House’s attention”. At no point was Steve Smith really challenged on the true cost of the fence, nor on opposition to the project. This co-production between the channel’s conservative editorial line and the pro-fence narrative enables the border area to be presented as a warzone, and amplifies the critique of the federal government.

    This staging of the debate complements lobbying to set up direct contact with federal decision-makers, as well as legal actions to pressure them. Pro-barrier activists in Arizona thus set out plans to secure the border, which they try to spread among Arizona authorities and federal elected officials-17. Sheriff Paul Babeu, for instance, took part in consultations on border security conducted by Senator John McCain and Presidential candidate Mitt Romney. By passing repressive immigration laws and mobilizing Arizona legal advisors to defend these laws when they are challenged in court, Republicans consecrate Arizona as their laboratory for immigration and border security policy.
    Twists and Turns of “Build The Wall”

    Portraying transborder mobility as a “problem” on the local and, especially, the national levels; Legitimizing a security-based response by promoting the “fence” as only solution; And accusing the federal government of failing to protect its citizens. These are the three pillars of “The Fence”, the performance by pro-fence activists in the early 2010s. These moves have enabled making militarization of the border and the “Build The Wall” trope banal. Its elements are present in the current state of the discourse, when Donald Trump resorts to aggressive rhetoric towards migrants, touts his “Wall” as the solution, and stages photo-ops alongside prototypes of the wall—and when he accuses both Congress and California of refusing to secure the border. The issue here has little to do with the undocumented, or with the variables governing Central American migration. It has far more to do with point-scoring against political opponents, and with political positioning within debates that cleave US society.

    #performance #performance_politique #spectacle #murs #barrières #barrières_frontalières #USA #Etats-Unis #Arizona #surveillance #surveillance_virtuelle #sécurité

    signalé par @reka

  • Biennale Venezia: muri protagonisti dell’esposizione di Architettura

    Mentre il governo italiano chiude i porti alle ong per lo sbarco di migranti alzando così una barriera immaginaria in mezzo al mediterraneo, quattro padiglioni della Biennale di Architettura di Venezia invitano i visitatori a riflettere su muri e confini. Un’esplicita critica all’attuale momento politico mondiale, segnalato da chiusure e separatismi.

    Freespace è il titolo scelto dalle architette irlandesi Yvonne Farrell e Shelley McNamara per parlare di libertà, generosità ed etica per arrivare alla valorizzazione degli spazi collettivi, senza tralasciare la rappresentazione politica che determinano le scelte nell’architettura. Secondo McNamara «dobbiamo essere consapevoli delle questioni politiche, l’architettura ha una profonda agenda sociale che ha una vasta portata politica».

    Partendo da questo principio, i padiglioni di Brasile, Stati Uniti, Germania e Israele hanno portato alla Biennale la loro ricerca basata sulla rappresentazione e percezione di muri, barriere e confini. Se in un momento della storia i muri erano indispensabile all’umanità per poter difendersi, oggi sono archetipi di conflitti e intolleranza.
    Biennale Venezia 2018: il muro nell’identità brasiliana

    Il viaggio tra interpretazioni ed esplorazioni, anche immaginarie, di muri e confini inizia dal padiglione brasiliano. A fare da cornice alla mostra Muros de Ar (Muri d’aria), si incontra una grande sala bianca dove sono state appese dieci gigantesche mappe suddivise per temi che attraverso la grafica mettono in relazione i problemi del paese con l’ambiente stesso.

    Attraverso la ricerca collettiva, i curatori Gabriel Kozlowski, Laura González Fierro, Marcelo Maia Rosa e Sol Camacho invitano a riflettere sulle condizioni archetipiche dei muri per il Brasile. Per i curatori «il muro è un elemento dell’architettura, della cultura e dell’identità brasiliane e la sua trasposizione si oppone all’omogeneizzazione, all’intolleranza e all’estremismo delle reclusioni».

    Le contraddizioni tra confine e divisione è vista alla luce del giorno nel paese verdeoro, dove la barriera sociale fra ricchi e poveri è sempre più evidente. Questa zona di confine costringe un’intera popolazione a vivere in uno stato di mancanza permanente di diritto.

    A dimostrazione di questo ci sono i dati l’istituto di ricerca Ipea. Soltanto nel 2016 più di 60 mila persone sono state assassinate nel paese e la maggior parte delle vittime sono giovani dai 15 ai 19 anni, neri e abitanti delle favelas.

    I dati rafforzano il pensiero di Ian Bremmer, presidente di Eurasia Group e professore della New York University, che durante un incontro a San Paolo a ottobre del 2017 aveva dichiarato che i governi dei paesi ricchi non daranno una risposta efficace all’aumento della disuguaglianza e che tensioni sociali e la violenza rafforzeranno i processi di esclusione e costruzione di muri, reali o virtuali.

    Oltre il muro di Trump alla Biennale di Venezia

    Su filone del pensiero di Bremmer si trova la mostra Dimensions of citizenship presentata dal padiglione degli Stati Uniti. Curata da Niall Atkinson, Ann Lui, Mimi Zeiger, l’esposizione si interroga sul significato della cittadinanza al giorno d’oggi, quando alcuni governi, compreso quello statunitense, limitano questo diritto. Per il team di curatori «è urgente che l’architettura agisca come uno strumento per comprendere, modellare e immaginare ciò che significa essere un cittadino oggi».

    Fra le opere della mostra, l’istallazione Mexus di Estudio Teddy Cruz + Fonna Forman ha riempito le parete di una delle sale del padiglione con una serie di fotografie intitolate La Nazione contro la Natura. Le immagini evidenziano una zona di confine fra Messico e Stati Uniti dove scorrono otto bacini fluviali che fanno una divisione geologica fra i due paesi.

    Arte e Biennale: 29 anni dopo la caduta del Muro

    Se gli Stati Uniti si sono interrogati sul senso della cittadinanza ai nostri giorni, la Germania ha fatto i conto con la propria storia. Ha presentato un’esposizione in cui il muro è mostrato come un’ombra oscura del passato, che deve essere ricordato perché non succeda più. Unbuilding Walls, curata da Marianne Birthler e dallo studio Graft, impressiona subito.

    Nella sala centrale del padiglione, l´istallazione di Alexander Lubic e cfk architetti riprende un muro alto, tagliato a pezzi, percorribile fra gli spazi vuoti. La parte davanti è dipinta di nero, mentro sul retro ci sono informazioni sui progetti costruiti nel 1989 lungo la striscia della morte che separava le due Germanie. L’istallazione gioca anche con la luce, proiettando sul pavimento l’ombra nera del muro frammentato, un chiaro richiamo al periodo buio del nazismo.

    Nelle due sale adiacenti, sei schermi fissi alle parete, messi uno accanto all’altro riprendendo l’impostazione di un muro, proiettavano la video-installazione Wall of Opinions. Ad ogni schermo un frammento di video documentava le testimonianze di persone che vivono in luoghi dove i muri esistono e fanno da barriera sociale, politica e immigratoria. Ad esempio, il muro che separa la Palestina da Israele, il muro di Trump che divide gli Stati Uniti dal Messico, quello della Corea del Nord e Sud e quello che fa da frontiera fra Unione Europea e Ceuta.
    Biennale di Architettura: Terra Santa, coesistenza tra culture

    Anche Israele ha portato il suo muro alla Biennale di Architettura. Statu Quo: Structures of Negotiation, curata da Ifat Finkelman, Deborah Pinto Fdeda, Tania Coen-Uzzielli, Oren Sagiv indaga sul delicato equilibrio coabitativo nei luoghi santi che spesso diventano luoghi di conflitti.

    Attraverso un percorso tra luoghi sacri invita a riflettere sulla coesistenza e le fragili regole di convivenza tra culture diverse che convivono in Terra Santa. L’architettura in questo caso è vista come un agente attivo per il mantenimento dell’equilibrio della regione, diventato molto complicato dopo 1948, l´anno in cui scoppiò la guerra con la Palestina.

    Subito all’ingresso è possibile vedere un modello materico della Chiesa del Santo Sepolcro dipinta di azzurro, bianco, giallo e marrone, dove ogni colore rappresenta una religione diversa. Nel piano superiore una video-installazione attende il pubblico. Nel video si vede il ponte in legno – che ricorda un tunnel – per Mughrabi, unica entrata al tempio per i non musulmani. Impressiona lo sguardo di una donna in un frame del video.

    #murs #art #Venise #biennale #frontières #barrières_frontalières

    @isskein y est, si j’ai bien compris!

  • El Gobierno desempolva un convenio de hace 26 años para expulsar a 116 migrantes

    La operación, de carácter extraordinario, se basa en un pacto que España y Marruecos firmaron en 1992.

    La Policía Nacional ha devuelto a Marruecos a los 116 subsaharianos que este miércoles saltaron la valla de Ceuta. Únicamente permanecen en España los dos menores que participaron en la entrada. El Gobierno ha recurrido para repatriarlos a un convenido firmado en 1992 por los entonces ministros del Interior de ambos países, José Luis Corcuera y Driss Basri, que contemplaba la expulsión en menos de 10 días de los ciudadanos de terceros países que entraran ilegalmente en España desde Marruecos. En sus 26 años, el acuerdo solo se había aplicado de manera excepcional.

    Firmado tras un repunte de la llegada de pateras a las costas andaluzas a comienzo de los noventa, en sus primeros 13 años en vigor el convenio sirvió para expulsar únicamente a 114 migrantes. En 2006, el Gobierno de José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero intentó reactivarlo, pero sin éxito. Tampoco lo logró Jorge Fernández Díaz, ministro del Interior del PP, quien en 2014 llegó a plantear a Marruecos su aplicación solo a aquellos que lograran saltar la valla de “forma violenta”. Desde entonces, se había utilizado en contadas ocasiones y, siempre, con un número de extranjeros muy inferior al de este jueves.

    Fuentes policiales destacan que las reticencias de Rabat a admitir ciudadanos de terceros países por esta vía había convertido su aplicación en excepcional. En los últimos años se aplicaba únicamente a los no marroquíes que arribaban en patera a las Islas Chafarinas, un archipiélago de soberanía española situado a 27 millas náuticas de Melilla y a 1,9 de la costa de Marruecos, en las que solo hay un destacamento militar español.

    La decisión de reactivar el acuerdo de Corcuera más allá de estas pateras la tomó el Ejecutivo de Pedro Sánchez el pasado 26 de julio, después de que más de 600 inmigrantes lograran saltar la valla de Ceuta. Los ministros del Interior y Asuntos Exteriores, Fernando Grande-Marlaska y Josep Borrell, respectivamente, solicitaron entonces a Marruecos que permitiera la entrega de, al menos, una parte de este numeroso grupo, pero Rabat rechazó la propuesta, según detallan fuentes de Interior conocedoras de aquellos contactos. Marruecos sí se comprometió a aplicar el convenio si se volvía a producir un salto masivo, como el que finalmente se produjo este miércoles otra vez en Ceuta. España inició entonces los contactos, pero las autoridades del país magrebí volvieron a mostrar reticencias. Grande-Marlaska entró en contacto esa misma tarde con sus interlocutores magrebíes para desatascar la situación.

    Los responsables de la Comisaría General de Extranjería y Fronteras desplegaron entonces un amplio dispositivo para cumplimentar los trámites en pocas horas. Los migrantes fueron trasladados de 10 en 10 desde el Centro de Estancia Temporal de Inmigrantes (CETI) de Ceuta a dependencias policiales para tramitar el expediente de devolución de forma exprés. Tras tomarles la filiación, se les entregaba la orden de expulsión en presencia de un abogado. De allí, pasaban a los calabozos para su posterior traslado en vehículos a la frontera. Interior ha marcado distancias con las polémicas devoluciones en caliente, en las que no se produce ninguna de estas circunstancias y que ya han costado una condena del Tribunal Europeo de Derechos Humanos de Estrasburgo. Portavoces del ministerio recalcaban que “ninguno” de los 116 inmigrantes ahora devueltos a Marruecos solicitó asilo durante este trámite.
    España pagará los gastos

    Fuentes del equipo de Grande-Marlaska reconocen que el procedimiento habitual es que la devolución se haga directamente con el país de origen. Sin embargo, el acuerdo ahora esgrimido contempla la posibilidad de que regresen al país desde el que han cruzado la frontera, pese a que no sean oriundos de allí. “La clave es que han entrado por Marruecos”, recalcan estas fuentes. El convenio recoge que España se hace cargo tanto de los gastos de transporte a Marruecos como, posteriormente, desde allí a sus países de origen.

    Interior recalca que la entrada de los ahora devueltos se produjo de forma “ilegal y violenta” tras arrojar cal viva, ácido y excrementos a los guardias civiles que custodiaban la frontera. Siete agentes y cinco migrantes resultados heridos. “Legalmente, su situación es muy distinta de los que se les rescata en el mar”, recuerdan desde el ministerio. En el caso del auxilio de las pateras, la normativa internacional establece la obligación de los servicios de salvamento de llevar a los rescatados al puerto seguro más cercano.


    Je mets ici un autre message pour alimenter le tag #walls_don't_work #efficacité #murs #barrières_frontalières #frontières #les_murs_ne_marchent_pas

    ... même si, une fois passé le mur, les autorités marocaines ont procédé au #renvois #expulsions #push-backs des exilé·es qui avaient réussi à passer le barrage...

    #Ceuta #Melilla #Espagne #Maroc

  • Illusion cartographique au Nord, barrière de sable à l’Est : les #frontières mouvantes du #Sahara_occidental

    C’est entre 1981 et 1987 que l’Etat marocain entreprend, avec l’aide de techniciens français, la fortification militaire de lignes de dunes dans une perspective défensive. La fin des années 1970 est alors marquée par des combats violents entre les Forces armées marocaines (FAR) et le Front Polisario, qui agit dès 1976 depuis des bases arrière algérienne et mauritanienne. La prise pour cible du territoire marocain (hors de la zone controversée) et l’occupation ponctuelle de Tan Tan par les indépendantistes (opération « Houari Boumédiene ») sont vécues côté marocain comme un affront et renforcent l’idée d’un nécessaire mur de sécurisation pour protéger les centres névralgiques du Sahara, à savoir les villes, les oasis, les mines de phosphate de Bou Craa et les sources de la Saguia al Hamra (Mohsen-Finan, 2004). Entreprise à la faveur d’un renversement du rapport de forces sur le terrain par les FAR, la fortification de dunes s’étale sur plusieurs années

    #cartographie #Maroc

  • Migration : Sous nos yeux, ils demandent à passer


    Frédéric Worms s’entretient avec le philosophe et historien de l’art

    Georges Didi-Huberman de son ouvrage "Passer, quoi qu’il en coûte" co-écrit avec Niki Giannari (Minuit, 2017).
    Idomeni, frontière entre la Grèce et la Macédoine, mars 2016
    Crédits : Maria Kourkouta

    « Ils », ce sont eux, les « migrants », ils demandent « seulement à passer » comme le dit Nika Gianniri dans le poème qui ouvre le livre qu’elle partage avec Georges Didi-Huberman. Leur livre « du passage » à eux, face à ce passage arrêté, bloqué, ce laissez-passer refusé, cette Europe murée, ici, à Idomeni au Nord de la Grèce. Une cinéaste, une poète qui travaille dans une association, et l’historien des images passantes, survivantes, résistantes, s’unissent pour nous donner à penser ce passage. Nous permettre de le voir. Car cela se passe sous nos yeux, littéralement sous nos yeux et nous ne le voyons pas. Avec en arrière plan tous les passages bloqués, les « spectres qui hantent l’Europe ». L’auteur du « livre des passages », Walter Benjamin, qui se suicide en 1940 à Port-Bou, ville frontière d’un autre temps d’arrêt. Surimpression des images. Regardons « les ». Leur passage, c’est le nôtre. Le temps des laissez passer est revenu.

    Georges Didi-Huberman : Comme dit Hannah Arendt des réfugiés "ils sont notre avant-garde". Ils sont notre passé et notre futur.

    Il n’est pas d’image qui ne soit migrante. Toute image est une migration. Les images ne sont jamais autochtones.

    On pourrait dire que mon idée fixe, c’est le mouvement. Notre tragédie politique aujourd’hui ce sont les mouvements empêchés.

    Il y a des choses qui sont et ces choses qui sont ont, à chaque moment de leur existence, la traîne de leur mémoire et la dynamique de leur futur qui arrive.

    L’art du désir ne doit jamais oublier l’art de la mémoire. L’art de la mémoire ne doit jamais oublier son art du désir.

    #migrations #réfugiés#asyle #frontières #murs #documentaires

  • The History of Civilization Is a History of Border Walls

    When I joined my first archaeological dig at a site near Hadrian’s Wall in 2002, walls never appeared in the nightly news. Britain was still many years away from planning a barrier near the opening of the Chunnel in Calais. Saudi Arabia hadn’t yet encircled itself with high-tech barricades. Israel hadn’t started reinforcing its Gaza border fence with concrete. Kenya wasn’t seeking Israel’s help in the construction of a 440-mile barrier against Somalia. And the idea that India might someday send workers high into the Himalayas to construct border walls that look down on clouds still seemed as preposterous as the notion that Ecuador might commence construction on a 950-mile concrete wall along its border with Peru.

    No one chatted about walls while we cut through sod to expose the buried remains of an ancient fortress in northern Britain. I doubt that anyone was chatting about walls anywhere. The old fortress, on the other hand, was generally considered the crown jewel of British archaeology. For more than 30 years, sharp-eyed excavators at the Roman fort of Vindolanda had been finding writing tablets — thin slivers of wood upon which Roman soldiers had written letters, duty rosters, inventories, and other assorted jottings. At first, the tablets had represented something of a technical challenge; their spectral writing faded almost immediately upon exposure to air, almost as if written in invisible ink. But when the writings were recovered through infrared photography, a tremendous satisfaction came from the discovery that Roman soldiers complained about shortages of beer while the wives of their commanders planned birthday parties. The Romans, it turned out, were a lot like us.

    Archaeology, even at such a special place, was tiring business, but after work I enjoyed taking hikes along the wall. It was beautiful countryside — well lit by an evening sun that lingered late during the Northumbrian summer — and as I ambled over the grassy hills, occasionally enjoying the company of sheep, I sometimes imagined I was a lonely Roman soldier, stationed at the end of the world, scanning the horizon for barbarians while I awaited a resupply of beer. I’m ashamed to say that I took no detailed notes on the wall itself. It made for beautiful photographs, the way it stretched languidly over the countryside, but my real interest lay in other things: the Roman soldiers, the barbarians, the letters. If anything I saw in Britain was to hold any significance for my research, it seemed obvious that I would find it in the wet gray clay of Vindolanda. There I hoped only to discern tiny clues about a particular period of Roman history. Such are the modest goals of the academic. For the duration of my stay, my focus was on the clay. All the while, I was standing right next to a piece of a much bigger story, a fragment of the past that was about to rise up from its ancient slumber to dominate contemporary politics on two continents. I was leaning against it, resting my hand on it, posing for pictures by it. I just didn’t see it.

    It was my interest in the barbarians that finally opened my eyes to the historical importance of walls. The barbarians were, in the main, inhabitants of every North African or Eurasian wasteland — the steppes, the deserts, the mountains. Civilized folk had erected barriers to exclude them in an astonishing array of countries: Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Iran, Greece, Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Russia, Britain, Algeria, Libya, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Afghanistan, Peru, China, and Korea, to give only a partial list. Yet somehow this fact had entirely escaped the notice of historians. Not a single textbook observed the nearly universal correlation between civilization and walls. It remained standard even for specialists to remark that walls were somehow unique to Chinese history, if not unique to Chinese culture — a stereotype that couldn’t possibly be any less true.

    By some cruel irony, the mere concept of walls now divides people more thoroughly than any structure of brick or stone.

    The reemergence of border walls in contemporary political debates made for an even more surprising revelation. Like most people my age, I had watched the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 with great excitement. To many of us, it looked like the beginning of a new era, heralded by no less towering an international figure than David Hasselhoff, whose concert united both halves of Berlin in inexplicable rapture. More than a quarter-century has passed since then, and if it had once seemed that walls had become a thing of the past, that belief has proven sorely wrong.

    Border walls have experienced a conspicuous revival in the 21st century. Worldwide, some 70 barriers of various sorts currently stand guard. Some exist to prevent terrorism, others as obstacles to mass migration or the flow of illegal drugs. Nearly all mark national borders. By some cruel irony, the mere concept of walls now divides people more thoroughly than any structure of brick or stone. For every person who sees a wall as an act of oppression, there is always another urging the construction of newer, higher, and longer barriers. The two sides hardly speak to each other.

    As things turned out, it was the not the beer or the birthday parties that connected the past to the present in northern England. It was the wall. We can almost imagine it now as a great stone timeline, inhabited on one end by ancients, on the other by moderns, but with both always residing on the same side facing off against an unseen enemy. If I couldn’t see that in 2002, it was only because we were then still living in an anomalous stage in history and had somehow lost our instinct for something that has nearly always been a part of our world.

    How important have walls been in the history of civilization? Few civilized peoples have ever lived outside them. As early as the 10th millennium BC, the builders of Jericho encircled their city, the world’s first, with a rampart. Over time, urbanism and agriculture spread from Jericho and the Levant into new territories: Anatolia, Egypt, Mesopotamia, the Balkans, and beyond. Walls inevitably followed. Everywhere farmers settled, they fortified their villages. They chose elevated sites and dug ditches to enclose their homes. Entire communities pitched in to make their villages secure. A survey of prehistoric Transylvanian farming villages determined that some 1,400 to 1,500 cubic meters of earth typically had to be moved just to create an encircling ditch — an effort that would have required the labor of 60 men for 40 days. Subsequently, those ditches were lined with stone and bolstered by palisades. If a community survived long enough, it might add flanking towers. These were the first steps toward walls.

    The creators of the first civilizations descended from generations of wall builders. They used their newfound advantages in organization and numbers to build bigger walls. More than a few still survive. We can estimate their heights, their thicknesses, their volumes, and their lengths. But the numbers can only tell us so much. We will always learn more by examining the people who built the walls or the fear that led to their construction.

    And what about these fears? Were civilizations — and walls — created only by unusually fearful peoples? Or did creating civilization cause people to become fearful? Such questions turn out to be far more important than we’ve ever realized.

    Since 2002, I’ve had ample time to reflect on the Roman soldiers who once guarded Hadrian’s Wall. They certainly never struck me as afraid of anything. Then again, they weren’t exactly Roman, either. They came chiefly from foreign lands, principally Belgium and Holland, which were in those days still as uncivilized as the regions north of the wall. Everything they knew of building and writing, they had learned in the service of Rome.

    As for the Romans, they preferred to let others fight their battles. They had become the definitive bearers of civilization and as such were the target of a familiar complaint: that they had lost their edge. Comfortable behind their city walls and their foreign guards, they had grown soft. They were politicians and philosophers, bread makers and blacksmiths, anything but fighters.

    The Roman poet Ovid knew a thing or two about the soft life, but he also had the unusual experience of learning what life was like for Rome’s frontier troops. The latter misfortune came as a consequence of his having offended the emperor Augustus. The offense was some peccadillo — Ovid never divulges the details — compounded by his having penned a rather scandalous book on the art of seduction. “What is the theme of my song?” he asked puckishly, in verse. “Nothing that’s very far wrong.” Augustus disagreed. Reading Ovid’s little love manual, the moralistic emperor saw plenty of wrong. He probably never even made it to the section where Ovid raved about what a great ruler he was. Augustus banished the poet from Rome, exiling him to Tomis, a doomed city on the coast of the Black Sea, 60-odd miles south of the Danube.

    Tomis was a hardscrabble sort of place, a former Greek colony already some 600 years old by the time of Ovid’s exile in the first century AD and no shinier for the wear. Its distinguishing characteristics were exactly two: First, it was about as far from Rome as one could be sent. Second, it lay perilously close to some of Rome’s fiercest enemies, in an area that didn’t yet have a border wall. Like northern Britain, the region of Tomis would one day receive its share of border walls, but in Ovid’s day, the only barriers to invasion were the fortifications around the city itself.

    Ovid suffered in his new home. It was one thing to live in a walled city, but quite another to be completely confined within those walls. In his letters to Rome, Ovid complained that the farmers of Tomis couldn’t even venture out onto their fields. On the rare occasion when a peasant dared to visit his plot, he guided the plow with one hand while carrying weapons in another. Even the shepherds wore helmets.

    Fear permeated everyday life in Tomis. Even in times of peace, wrote Ovid, the dread of war loomed. The city was, for all intents and purposes, under perpetual siege. Ovid likened the townspeople to a timid stag caught by bears or a lamb surrounded by wolves.

    Occasionally, Ovid reminisced on his former life in the capital, where he’d lived free from fear. He wistfully recalled the amenities of Rome — the forums, the temples, and the marble theaters; the porticoes, gardens, pools, and canals; above all, the cornucopia of literature at hand. The contrast with his new circumstances was complete. At Tomis, there was nothing but the clash and clang of weapons. Ovid imagined that he might at least content himself with gardening, if only he weren’t afraid to step outside. The enemy was quite literally at the gates, separated only by the thickness of the city’s wall. Barbarian horsemen circled Tomis. Their deadly arrows, which Ovid unfailingly reminds us had been dipped in snake venom, made pincushions of the roofs in the city.

    The birth of walls set human societies on divergent paths, one leading to self-indulgent poetry, the other to taciturn militarism.

    There remained a final indignity for Ovid: the feeble, middle-aged author was pressed into service in defense of Tomis. As a youth, Ovid had avoided military service. There was no shame for shirkers back in Rome, a city replete with peaceniks and civilians. Now aging, Ovid had finally been forced to carry a sword, shield, and helmet. When the guard from the lookout signaled a raid, the poet donned his armor with shaking hands. Here was a true Roman, afraid to step out from behind his fortifications and hopelessly overwhelmed by the responsibility of defending them.

    From time to time, a Chinese poet would find himself in a situation much like Ovid’s. Stationed at some lonely outpost on the farthest reaches of the empire, the Chinese, too, longed for home while dreading the nearness of the barbarians. “In the frontier towns, you will have sad dreams at night,” wrote one. “Who wants to hear the barbarian pipe played to the moon?” Sometimes they meditated on the story of the Chinese princess who drowned herself in a river rather than cross beyond the wall. Even Chinese generals lamented the frontier life.

    Oddly, none of these sentiments appear in the letters written by the Roman soldiers at Vindolanda. Transplanted to a rainy land far from home, they grumbled at times about the beer supply but had nothing to say about shaky hands or sad dreams. It was as if these barbarian-turned-Roman auxiliaries had come from another world, where homesickness and fear had been banished. Perhaps they had.

    Almost anytime we examine the past and seek out the people most like us — those such as Ovid or the Chinese poets; people who built cities, knew how to read, and generally carried out civilian labor — we find them enclosed behind walls of their own making. Civilization and walls seem to have gone hand in hand. Beyond the walls, we find little with which we can identify — warriors mostly, of the sort we might hire to patrol the walls. The outsiders are mostly anonymous, except when they become notorious.

    The birth of walls set human societies on divergent paths, one leading to self-indulgent poetry, the other to taciturn militarism. But the first path also pointed to much more — science, mathematics, theater, art — while the other brought its followers only to a dead end, where a man was nothing except a warrior and all labor devolved upon the women.

    No invention in human history played a greater role in creating and shaping civilization than walls. Without walls, there could never have been an Ovid, and the same can be said for Chinese scholars, Babylonian mathematicians, or Greek philosophers. Moreover, the impact of walls wasn’t limited to the early phases of civilization. Wall building persisted for most of history, climaxing spectacularly during a 1,000-year period when three large empires — Rome, China, and Sasanid Persia — erected barriers that made the geopolitical divisions of the Old World all but permanent.

    The collapse of those walls influenced world history almost as profoundly as their creation, by leading to the eclipse of one region, the stagnation of another, and the rise of a third. When the great border walls were gone, leaving only faint traces on the landscape, they left indelible lines on our maps — lines that have even today not yet been obscured by modern wars or the jockeying of nations for resources. Today, a newer set of walls, rising up on four continents, has the potential to remake the world yet again.

    #civilisation #histoire #murs #murs_frontaliers #histoire #frontières #livre #David_Frye

  • Come il Montenegro si prepara a un’emergenza che non c’è

    La percezione di un’emergenza migranti percorre come una febbre i Balcani, ma in nessun paese assume sembianze surreali come nel piccolo Montenegro, dove si lavora alacremente per affrontare arrivi di massa che almeno per ora non sono ancora avvenuti. Christian Elia ha incontrato per noi i protagonisti dell’accoglienza, i rifugiati che ci sono per ora, e i giornalisti sotto minaccia che si occupano anche di immigrazione.

    Negli ultimi due mesi il governo di Podgorica ha prima dichiarato di valutare la costruzione di un muro al confine con l’Albania, le cui forze dell’ordine lascerebbero passare una quota crescente e preoccupante di migranti rifiutandone il respingimento. Pochi giorni dopo, l’esecutivo montenegrino ha discusso di un’adesione a Frontex, l’agenzia delle frontiere europee. Posizioni pubbliche premiate dal governo ungherese, pronto a donare a Podgorica il filo spinato necessario a mettere in “sicurezza” almeno 25 chilometri del proprio confine meridionale.


    #frontières #murs #Albanie #Monténégro #Frontex #asile #migrations #réfugiés #route_des_balkans

  • This European Border Is Still Open. But for How Long?

    The border between Austria and Slovenia runs through Armin Tement’s backyard. Literally.

    Not that you would know it. Neat rows of vines march up and down the valley like military columns with no regard for a frontier laid down by man, why here, no one can quite remember. The Slovene wine workers speak German. The Austrians speak Slovenian, or at least try.

    As for the wine, well, says Mr. Tement, 32, “it tastes exactly the same on both sides.”

    When Mr. Tement’s family started making wine back in the 19th century, there was no border here. The region of Styria, straddling what is now southeastern Austria and northeastern Slovenia, was part of the Hapsburg Empire.

    When the empire was broken up after World War I, Upper Styria became Austrian and Lower Styria became part of Yugoslavia — until the 1990s, when that country, too, was broken up and Slovenia gained its independence.

    The border, a hundred years old this year, was briefly eliminated by advancing Nazi armies, then heavily policed during the Cold War, before vanishing in all but name when Slovenia joined the European Union’s passport-free travel zone in 2007.

    “It was a great moment,” recalled Janez Valdhuber, 53, a winemaker on the Slovenian side. To celebrate, he grabbed his young children, climbed the steep vineyard opposite his house to the top where the border runs, and unfurled a European flag.

    The interrogations at the border stopped, and Mr. Valdhuber’s car trunk was no longer searched when entering Austria.

    But some worry Europe’s open borders might slowly be closing again, one checkpoint at a time.

    This month, Germany announced that at its Bavarian border, it would turn back asylum seekers registered in other European Union countries, a move reintroducing a hard border of sorts with Austria.

    Austria, now run by a conservative government in coalition with the far right, threatened to do the same on its southern border with Italy, Europe’s busiest north-south trade route. And as if to demonstrate its resolve, Austria briefly resurrected checkpoints at the Brenner Pass this month.

    The border at Spielfeld, an Austrian town with barely 1,000 inhabitants, became a stop on the migrant route in 2015, and for a few traumatic weeks that year, tens of thousands of refugees came through.

    Since then, Austrian soldiers have returned.

    They ride in military jeeps along the “Wine Route,” a winding country road that zigzags back and forth across the border. They have built a fence along a small border stretch near Spielfeld and set up makeshift checkpoints in the hills — only sporadically manned, but there — on otherwise deserted lanes.

    No one here reports having seen any refugees in more than two years, and so far the border checks are relatively rare.

    But this month, the Austrian military and police staged a high-profile military exercise, simulating another mass arrival of migrants.

    A platform was set up for the photographers. Two Black Hawk helicopters circled overhead. Two hundred students from the police academy were enlisted as “refugees.” Later, the defense ministry released a video.

    “It feels a bit like we’re backsliding into the old days,” said Marko Oraze, a member of Austria’s Slovene-speaking minority who runs the Council of Carinthian Slovenes.

    Mr. Oraze lives in Austria but gets his car fixed in Slovenia. Many of his friends commute across the border every day.

    “More and more of them are stopped at the border on their way to work,” he said.

    Some in Spielfeld applaud the tougher stance taken by Austria.

    “It’s about time,” said Walpurga Sternad, who runs a restaurant with her husband near the highway connecting Austria and Slovenia. “They should just close all the borders in Europe, go back to what we used to have,” she said, as a group of friends nodded in approval.

    Ms. Sternad remembers the day in October 2015, when some 6,000 migrants poured over the border in Spielfeld, filling the motorway and spilling into her own front yard. “It was scary,” she said. “So many people. They kept coming.”

    #frontières #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Autriche #Slovénie #fermeture_des_frontières #Schengen (fin de -) #militarisation_des_frontières #armée #frontière_sud-alpine

    • Anti-immigration mood drives fear of racist profiling on EU borders

      Europe’s passport-free area under pressure as calls grow for tougher migrant controls.

      Police spot checks have become a part of Fahad’s annual summer holiday when driving through the snow-topped mountains of southern Bavaria.

      “This usually happens,” said the Kuwaiti father of three, when his silver people-carrier with his wife and children was stopped by German border officers in the idyllic Alpine town of #Kiefersfelden.

      Fahad and his family had to wait for more than half an hour at the border post, until they were given a pass to drive from Austria into Germany. During the FT’s three-hour stay at the checkpoint, non-white drivers made up about 70 per cent of cars selected for further checks. Fahad was one of a few drivers with beards, while others included women wearing headscarves and motorists who at first sight did not look like white Europeans. All were waved through once their IDs were checked, vehicle boots searched and luggage examined.

      Racial profiling at Europe’s internal borders is forbidden under EU law. But with a fresh wave of anti-immigrant governments calling for tougher controls on migrant movements, there are concerns that non-white people will come under increasing suspicion when travelling in the continent.

      Europe’s passport-free Schengen zone — an area made up of 26 European states that abolished passport control at their mutual borders — has buckled under twin pressures: Europe’s biggest influx of refugees since the second world war, and a growing number of anti-immigrant governments pushing to crack down on irregular migration flows. “There is such a fear that Schengen won’t survive that countries are being given the discretion to do whatever they can to keep it alive,” said Elizabeth Collett, director of the Migration Policy Institute Europe think-tank.

      Although the number of migrants entering the EU has dropped dramatically since the height of the migration crisis in 2015, emergency powers still allow border controls across 20,000km inside the Schengen zone. Kiefersfelden, a popular skiing destination, has become one of Schengen’s pinch points: it is home to one of three emergency police controls along Germany’s 820km border with Austria.

      Every car travelling on the A12 autobahn through Kiefersfelden must pass a police border stop where officers select vehicles for extra spot checks. The cars that are picked are sent to a tented zone, where drivers and passengers must show valid ID documents.

      Border police said they are told to look for signs of undocumented migrants and people smugglers crossing into Germany from Austria. So far this year, an average of 900 illegal migrants per month have been detained on the Austro-German border, down from 1,120 per month in 2017.

      As racial profiling is outlawed, it is the responsibility of European governments to ensure their police forces carry out checks at random. Rainer Schafer, spokesman for the federal police overseeing the Kiefersfelden controls, said race and ethnicity “can be among the indicators” officers look for when deciding to pull over a vehicle for extra checks.

      “But there are no rules that we just pick out the people who look like they are coming from Africa,” he said. Other factors include registration plates (Italian or eastern European plates draw officers’ attention), blacked-out windows, and the number of passengers, he said.

      Police checks in Bavaria are expected to intensify after the region’s conservative local government last month requested tougher migration controls.

      Horst Seehofer, Germany’s interior minister, has also called on the government to break two decades of EU-wide co-operation on migration and unilaterally send people away at Germany’s internal borders. Observers fear that other Schengen countries, like Austria, could in turn erect their own emergency border controls — and that the EU’s principle of free movement of people is at risk of becoming a privilege enjoyed only by white Europeans.

      A report from La Cimade, a French non-governmental organisation, found French border police “systematically check the identity documents of people who do not have the right skin colour” on inbound trains from Italy.

      Inga Schwarz, a researcher at the University of Freiburg, said Europe’s internal border crossings are becoming “increasingly racialised spaces, constructed not only by border guards profiling according to race, but also by European citizens who witness these racialised control practices”.

      In Kiefersfelden, the majority of the non-white drivers selected for checks were tourists in people-carriers and expensive cars — mostly from the Gulf — and were waved through in less than 15 minutes. Uruj, a 27-year-old teacher from Kuwait, her husband and young daughter waited for nearly an hour in their white Mercedes.

      Although they had valid visa documents, police took away their passports and only permitted the family to continue to their holiday destination in Austria once they had obtained a car seat for their three-and-a-half-year-old daughter, Wafah. Uruj, who was wearing a pink headscarf, said, “I don’t think they liked the look of us.”

      #contrôles_frontaliers #profiling #Allemagne #Autriche #contrôle_au_faciès

    • Réfugiés : la #Slovénie veut toujours plus de #barbelés sur sa frontière avec la #Croatie

      Les autorités slovènes se veulent rassurantes : la sécurité des frontières est assurée et personne n’a d’information sur l’éventuelle réouverture massive de la « #route_des_Balkans ». Pourtant le nouveau gouvernement ne semble pas avoir l’intention d’infléchir la politique migratoire de son prédécesseur et songerait même à étendre les barbelés qui coupent la Slovénie de son voisin croate.

      Par Charles Nonne

      La question des réfugiés semble ces dernières semaines avoir déserté le débat public en Slovénie. Le contrat de coalition signé le 28 août 2018, lapidaire, dédramatise : « Nous élaborerons une stratégie migratoire exhaustive, basée sur la coopération intergouvernementale. Nous protègerons les frontières de l’espace Schengen avec davantage d’efficacité et nous démonterons les obstacles techniques [barrières et panneaux] dès que les circonstances le permettront. »

      Pourtant, les passages de la frontière se poursuivent, notamment dans la région de la Bela Krajina, au sud-est du pays, où la rivière Kolpa sépare Slovénie et Croatie. Selon la police de Novo Mesto, entre le 1er janvier et le 31 septembre 2018, plus de 2400 ressortissants étrangers auraient illégalement franchi la Kolpa, soit douze fois plus qu’en 2017.

      Fin septembre, en marge d’un déplacement dans le centre régional de Črnomelj, le nouveau ministre de l’Intérieur, Boris Poklukar, avait affirmé vouloir maintenir les barrières en l’état, tout en garantissant que la police était préparée à une augmentation des passages frontaliers. Pour la maire de Črnomelj, Mojca Čemas Stjepanovič, « pour le moment, la sécurité est garantie et nous n’avons aucune raison de nous inquiéter. » Dans les communes les plus exposées, le gouvernement a promis l’érection de nouveaux « obstacles techniques » : sur les 670 kilomètres de frontière slovéno-croate, plus de 160 sont parcourus par des barbelés et 56 par de véritables barrières.

      En Slovénie, c’est notamment les tensions à la frontière entre la Bosnie-Herzégovine et la Croatie qui préoccupent. Si le gouvernement se prépare à plusieurs scénarios, il affirme n’avoir « aucune information laissant penser à une augmentation prochaine des flux », indique le ministre Boris Poklukar. Au nord, l’Autriche a d’ores et déjà annoncé qu’elle ne diminuerait pas la surveillance de sa frontière lors des six prochains mois.

      Au-delà du strict contrôle frontalier, d’autres questions divisent : des inquiétudes pèsent notamment sur la possible installation de centres d’accueil, comme à Debeli Rtič, sur la côte slovène, et à Brežice, à 40 kilomètres de Zagreb. La directrice du bureau gouvernemental pour la prise en charge de l’intégration des migrants, Mojca Špec Potočar, a tenu à indiquer qu’« il n’y [aurait] aucune installation permanente de réfugiés. »

      La question secoue également les rangs de la coalition : l’ancienne ministre de l’Intérieur, Vesna Györkös Žnidar, « faucon » régulièrement critiqué par les défenseurs des droits de l’homme, vient de claquer la porte de son parti, le Parti du centre moderne (SMC) de l’ancien Premier ministre Miro Cerar, en raison de désaccords profonds sur les questions migratoires.

      #fermeture_des_frontières #murs #barrières_frontalières