That one little thing the caravan organizers got caught flatfooted on...
Pueblo Sin Fronteras, the open-borders group that organized the migrant caravan, has had an easy time of it, racking up propaganda victory after propaganda victory as its group snaked through Mexico.
They put the tiny number of women and children in the group up front for the news cameras with the media obliging them to create the perception that the entire group was just women and children fleeing gangs instead of largely military-aged unemployed young men.
They brazenly waved the Honduran, Guatemalan, Mexican and Salvadoran flags in a bid to signal they aren't looking for 'mercy' from the U.S., they consider entering the U.S. a matter of right as nationals of those countries.
They busted down the gates of Mexico's southern border to signal to the world that Mexico's efforts to enforce its own border are utterly useless.
They kept the group together when there were signs it was splitting apart, the better to retain their power of numbers in order to make demands.
They got the Mexican authorities to feed, house, bed, medicate, and escort them throughout their journey to the U.S. border, signalling their clout over that sovereign nation. And it helped that like revolutionaries swimming among fishes, as Mao used to say, they got the Mexican locals to offer aid as well in the hopes that the group would continue on their way away from them.
The list goes on. Arriving in Tijuana, they hopped the border fence and danced around in plain view of U.S. lawmen, daring them to stop them, presumably through opening fire, and then when they didn't, they racked up another propaganda victory by exposing U.S. powerlessness to stop them. After that, they hopped back into Mexico with no consequences.
There's just one thing they didn't calculate for: The rage of Tijuana's locals, whose anger is growing at the prospect of migrants camping out all over their city streets and neighborhoods, bringing crime, garbage, homeless encampments and disorder. Here's a screengrab from KGTV and you can see the whole confrontation at this link here:
Tijuana is a pretty orderly and prosperous place in Mexico, much more so than Mexico's impoverished south (where Mexico's government cordially invited the migrants to settle), and the prospect of caravan migrants setting up camps for months in TJ as they await to be processed for their fake asylum claims into the U.S, is bringing about the same reaction you'd expect to see from the Rancho Bernardo or La Jolla areas of San Diego, were the thousands of migrants to set up camp there instead.
Based on two local television news reports, from ABC10 and CBS 8 of San Diego, the problem is worse than it's being reported in the national press.
KGTV, the ABC affiliate, and KFMB, the CBS affiliate, both reported that violent fights have broken out with rocks, punches, hurled beer cans and other thuggery. The San Diego Union-Tribune reported that at least a thousand of the Tijuana residents have banded together into a social media group to save their neighborhoods from the migrants. There are also reports that the Tijuana cops aren't putting up with this, and already have arrested and jailed five of the caravan migrants, two for starting fights and three for doing drugs. How nice to think they traveled 2,000 miles to reach the inside of a Tijuana jailhouse. Here's some of the local sentiment from KGTV:
Some Tijuana residents are frustrated with the growing number of Central American migrants that have gathered along the border in hopes of gaining asylum in the U.S.
Tijuana resident Cesar Baltazar, who legally crosses the border on a regular basis to work in the U.S., told 10News, "In Plaza Tijuana, they're already fighting. I mean, all the residents there don't want them there."
On Wednesday night, a confrontation between Mexican nationals and some members of the immigrant caravan escalated into violence. The fight inflicted injury on both sides, including one man seen on cell phone video with a bloody eye.
“They're unknown, that's the thing,” Baltazer said. "They're unknown. They're strangers."
"[Tijuana] has a lot of crime. They have a lot of murders. They have a lot of drug usage. So, they don't want those problems from Central America to come over here,” he told 10News.
Tijuana resident Georgina Parra added, "Everyone is in disagreement. Aside from them trashing our city, they're making caravans outside and talking badly about Tijuana."
The Tijuana people don't like those insults, and rightly so - Tijuana is so much nicer a place than the countries these migrants left, and to see new arrivals coming in by the busload to insult them is kind of rich, so the local disgust is understandable. Nor is it warranted. Few of the real Tijuana residents ever move to San Diego, given the ease they would have do that, and the fact that they actually don't.
And it's actually getting some coverage, something the migrant caravan planners didn't calculate for. With the prospect of migrants having to camp out in TJ for six months before they can get released into the U.S. to work a few years before their asylum claims are rejected, there is going to be resistance. And it will only get worse as time grinds on and frustrations build. I can see some of the TJ people and their elected officials pressuring the U.S. to process the fake asylum claims more quickly, but the U.S. may be in a position to resist that. If it does, the caravan is going to be left to explain why it shouldn't be run out of town as angry Tijuana residents get angrier.
Who would have thought it would come to this?