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Breaking up families is longstanding American policy: Analyst

Nazi concentration camps

The United States was built on the genocide of the indigenous population and a common practice was to steal children from tribal homes and send them to schools to “civilize” them, according to Myles Hoenig, an American political analyst and activist.

Hoenig, a former Green Party candidate for Congress, made the remarks in an interview with Press TV on Wednesday on US President Donald Trump's controversial immigration policy which is separating families and causing psychological damage and irreversible harm to children, according to experts.

“To anyone with a moral conscience, separating children from their parents, and especially moving them thousands of miles away, is abhorrent and a violation of all norms of human decency. Even people like Senator Cruz of Texas seems to be offended. The Trump administration seems to have no conscience regarding this issue,” Hoenig said.

“Attorney General Sessions uses his interpretation of his religion to justify it, as the KKK often used the Bible for their justification. Trump himself says he’s bothered by it but to him it’s a political and strategic maneuver to pass an anti-immigration bill, something that does not happen quickly,” he added.

“As horrible as this is, this is American policy going back centuries. European and then early Americans enslaved Africans and once brought here, often separated children from their parents as well as breaking up families, depending on the monetary value they can bring to the slave owner,” he noted.

“The US was built on not just the enslavement of Africans but the genocide of the indigenous population. A common practice was to steal children from tribal homes and send them to schools to ‘Christianize’ and ‘civilize’ them.  During WW2 Japanese American families were also broken up. George Takei, an actor, activist, and former internee has said that what is happening today on our border is even worse than what he, his family, and others experienced,” the analyst said.

“Even tangentially to US foreign policy, the US continually support Israel in its terror campaigns against Palestinian children by raiding their homes at night and taking children away to prison for crimes like throwing stones. It was also probably not lost on US foreign policy makers that the military of Argentina during their reign of terror in the 70s killed men and women and gave their surviving children to their officer corp,” he noted.

“What Trump is doing is simply playing politics with the lives of innocent children and parents fleeing persecution in their home countries. He is willing to pick and choose which laws to enforce and even which federal laws to ignore. As a signatory to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, separating children from their parents without consent is a violation, and a violation of US federal law,” the activist said.

“The lack of human decency from this administration is appalling. Even the notorious Michael Hayden, former director of the CIA, compared Trump’s border policy to Nazi concentration camps, yet all of Trump’s spokes people simply blame past administrations and say they’re simply following the law, not that they can cite any which calls for such separations,” he stated.

In May, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a "zero tolerance" policy towards undocumented migrants and refugees, promising to prosecute those who crossed the southern border illegally.

Part of that approach has been separating children from their families and putting them in custody while their parents are processed.  

More than 11,000 migrant children are currently being held in overcrowded shelters run by the Department of Health and Human Services. Since the policy was announced, more than 2,300 children have been taken away from their parents at the southern border.

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