The invitation by Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto to the racist Republican candidate Donald Trump sparked widespread indignation, marking the start of what could become a new wave of mass anti-imperialist protests in the country.
Throughout history, Mexico has been forced to submit to colonial and imperialist powers. In the 19th century it was chained to Spain and France. With the annexation of more than 2 million square kilometers of land in 1848, following actions by the US military, the northern giant became positioned as the dominant imperialist power.
This subordination of Mexico includes the plundering of its natural resources by the imperialist countries and the super exploitation of the Mexican working class. It has also meant military and political subordination.
Mexico faces recolonization
U.S. imperialism’s control over Mexico has advanced rapidly in the last 20 years, to the point of becoming a true recolonization process—starting with the signing of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in 1994. Today, the imperialist yoke means handing over natural resources to large global enterprises, such as the mining companies that have permission to utilize about 20 percent of the national territory, or that oil companies that today can exploit territory nationalized in 1938. The government argues that Mexico does not have the equipment to continue extracting oil itself, so they allow foreign companies to extract Mexican oil alongside the state-run PEMEX.
There has been an increase in precarious labor conditions and diminishing rights for workers in industrial sectors like the maquilas that produce auto parts and electronics. These companies make huge profits while Mexican workers are super-exploited, turning the country into a major U.S. resource for production and imports.
Another facet of Mexican subordination to the US can be seen in the ongoing “war on drugs” and the militarization imposed by Plan Mérida, leading to over 150,000 deaths, tens of thousands missing and the escalation of femicide, along with innumerable human rights violations. Behind the disappearance of the 43 Ayotzinapa students, and the massacres in Tlatlaya, Tanhuato, and Apatzingán, lies the meddling of U.S. imperialism. These massacres, perpetrated by the Mexican army, were the consequence of militarization and increased security forces along migrant routes that were brought by Plan Mérida.
The Mexican political caste kneels to the White House
Although there’s a political struggle between Republicans and Democrats over who will succeed President Obama, both candidates are clear representatives of U.S. imperialist interests. Donald Trump is a proven racist that employs hateful rhetoric against immigrants, accusing them of being criminals and terrorists. An major proposal, repeated by Trump again and again, is the construction of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border to stop immigration, together with an aggressive plan of mass deportations of Latin-American workers.
Hillary Clinton — or Killary, as some sectors of youth and left organizations have begun to call her — is part of the old U.S. “political caste,” with strong ties to Wall Street and the military leadership. She has taken interventionist positions to defend the U.S. corporate interests throughout the world, most notably, supporting the coup in Honduras. She opposed the reduction of U.S. forces in Afghanistan and Iraq and calls for the deployment of troops to Syria.
Many believe that she will have a more hawkish foreign policy than even Obama, which is saying a lot considering his many imperialist endeavors. Obama leaves office after eight years of war, military intervention in seven countries, and 3 million deported immigrants. Some within the Republican Party even prefer her as president to their own party’s nominee, Trump.
To Mexican workers, it doesn’t matter which of the two will be residing in the White House. Both candidates mean worse conditions for us. It is naïve to hope that the system can be changed by the parties that continue the subordination of our country.
This is an abridged version of an article that appeared in La Izquierda Diario, Mexico
Translated by Razett
Mexican students and workers joined the #NotWithThem campaign. Check out why they are against both Hillary and Trump.
From Mexico, we say #NotWithThem because racism will persist with Hillary or Trump. I am a teacher.
#NotWithThem because they will never work in favor of workers
#NotWithThem because I have a migrant family and neither Trump nor Hillary represent them
#NotWithThem ‘cause Killary and Trump hate Black and Migrant Workers. From the MTS in Mexico
#NotWithThem because they both represent a empire in decline
#NotWithThem. No to the walls and no to the wars!
#NotWithThem because they do not consider of women or immigrants
From Mexico, we say #NotWithThem because Trump= Wall, Killary= War