Saturday, August 04, 2007

Almost all Cubans now get to U.S. through Mexico

Remember the flotilla of boats attempting to make passage from Cuba to Florida, the Coast Guard stopping them and arresting the Cubans aboard? That was yesterday. Now, the vast majority of Cubans enter the United States through Mexico, after their U.S. relatives pay thousands of dollars to organized crime networks to scoop them off Cuba's westernmost tip in souped-up speedboats.

Some 9,296 Cubans arrived in the United States from Mexico between Oct. 1 and July 22, more than double the 4,589 who crossed or were picked up by the Coast Guard in the Florida Straits during the same period. The Mexico route is now so popular that U.S. immigration officials call those who follow it 'dusty foot' Cubans, a play on Washington's 'wet-foot/dry foot' policy that lets Cuban migrants captured on U.S. soil stay in America, but sends those picked up at sea back to the island.

A speedboat smuggler making the 120-mile dash from Cuba to Mexico's Yucatan peninsula can earn $30,000 per haul of 30 or more Cubans. They often rendezvous with yachts that can ferry large groups to shore undetected, using satellite phones and GPS technology to coordinate late-night pickups in Cuba's western-most Pinar del Rio province.

Unlike other migrants, the Cubans have no need to run from the Border Patrol. They simply announce their nationality and ask to stay. As long as they don't have criminal records or dangerous health problems, they are allowed to remain in America and seek permanent residency after a year.

1 comment:

  1. Why not? Everybody else is doing it. They know our government won't secure the border "Bush". How do you think all the muzzies are coming in!!!!! With a good neighbor like meXico, as Bush puts it, we don't need enemies. Secure the damn borders!!!!!!!!


Please be civil. Thank you.