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Parshat Shlach: Resisting Peer Pressure (June 29, 2019)

Can you stand with God when everyone is against you?

It's Bible Study Coffee Time - June 29, 2019.

Parashat Sh'lach / פרשת
--Primary reading: Numbers 13:1 - 15:41
--Supplemental reading: Joshua 2:1 - 2:24

In this week's portion, Moses sends a group of men to check out the Land of Israel before the Jewish people go in to conquer it.

Most of them come back with a bad report, biased & made to stoke fear.

Joshua and Caleb stand steadfast, and the Jews decide to murder them (they fail).

It is interesting to note how the Bible tells us the truth. There is no idealized portrait of the Jews here. It's basically one shitty episode after another, and the behavior here is nothing short of shocking.

Because you'd think that after everything God did for the Jews, saving them from brutal slavery, making a covenant with them (us), giving them (us) the Torah, the naysayers would finally shut up already.

Unfortunately, however, that did not happen, and we tell the story from the vantage point of thousands of years later, as if everything is just so obvious, when in the time it happened people argued back and forth.

You see the very same exact dynamics at work with President Trump and what he's trying to do. There are a few people who are willing to speak up. The rest are naysayers, and they threaten those who stand firm.

You see that the very people you look to for moral guidance vanish as soon as things get difficult.

Or worse yet, they come after YOU to attack YOU for doing what is right.

This is Kate Cronin-Furman.

She has added her own ignorant two cents to the chorus of voices out there attacking our law enforcement agents, who are in danger of dying every single day, as they cope with the mass invasion of migrants from the south.

Cronin-Furman calls for the public to identify Border Patrol agents by name. This is a threat, and the New York Times has published this threat.

Quote: “The identities of the individual Customs and Border Protection agents who are physically separating children from their families and staffing the detention centers are not undiscoverable."

Headline: "The Treatment of Migrants Likely ‘Meets the Definition of a Mass Atrocity’"

Subhead: "Children are suffering and dying. The fastest way to stop it is to make sure those responsible, including the foot soldiers, face consequences."


Cronin-Furman: "The debate over whether 'concentration camps' is the right term for migrant detention centers on the southern border has drawn long-overdue attention to the American government’s dehumanizing treatment of defenseless children."


Cronin-Furman: "A pediatrician who visited in June said the centers could be compared to 'torture facilities.' Having studied mass atrocities for over a decade, I agree."


The media has gotten away with publishing fake news like this for so long, on such a scale, that their continued activity in this regard can only be viewed as a seditious conspiracy. …

Title 18 USC Section 2384:

"If two or more persons in any State or Territory, or in any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, conspire to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them--"

"--, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, they shall each be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both."

A conspiracy doesn't require that you sign an oath in blood. It means that you are coordinating with other people. If the media environment is such that anyone pro-Trump is targeted, then there is a conspiracy happening to overthrow the President and thus the government.

What percentage of Trump coverage is negative?
"A Harvard study found that 80 percent of Trump coverage was negative during his first 100 days in office."

Another, more recent study: 98% negative.

Cronin-Furman's curriculum vitae is here.

Ph.D., 2015.

Worked at Harvard and University College London as a researcher and lecturer.

Has written about mass atrocities and accountability.

Fair enough.

But has she studied what's going on at the Southern border?

Lots of interesting good work...but it appears the answer is no...and she just published an article in the New York Times which (wordplay aside) basically calls detention centers concentration camps, with torture, and says Border Patrol agents should be personally accountable

In the Bible, the spies spoke wrong, but they spoke from evidence.

Based on what is this inexperienced academic saying that agents should "face consequences?"


Where are the Nazis, exactly?

34) Donde esta? …

Cronin-Furman "heard" that someone called it "torture" - did she bother to watch what the person in charge had to say about all this, let alone go there herself?

Please don't get me wrong. I don't doubt this professor's sincerity.

But she has no business writing such an incendiary article, particularly considering the fact that she has never studied it, & offers secondhand evidence from "someone who went somewhere and saw something"

To be fair, anyone who takes an objective look at the situation would conclude that there are or were children suffering under inhumane conditions, and that the government is responsible.

But the reason for this horrendous situation is about as far from Nazi Germany as can be.
Whereas the Nazis were deliberately rounding up Jews and others in order to kill them, the United States is coping with a massive horde of people -- some legitimately needing asylum, others not -- taking advantage of a legal loophole.

The tactics are dirty and underhanded, much like the Hamas playbook - create the victim, show the victim suffering, blame the hapless authority for being cruel and establishing an apartheid state.

This video of Speaker Pelosi surrounded and in danger pretty much sums up the true situation. This is a border invasion - for votes, for traffickers, for gangs, for drug running, and more - and anyone who truly cared about people would reform the asylum law.

The evil spies who returned from Israel said that it was a land filled with giants who would eat the Jews alive.

People like Cronin-Furman are no different. They just use a different kind of scenario, calling our Border Patrol agents who eat the suffering ones alive.

When you lose your God-compass, everything you think of seems like morality in the moment.

And your own moral compass can make you do some horrendous things.

That, perhaps, is the scariest thing of all.

By Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal. All opinions are the author's own. Public domain. Free photo via Pixabay.

Conceptual Framework For Assessing Prosocial Behavior

By Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal. All rights reserved.

"A New Day"

Kamala Harris tweeted “a new day is coming” - this could be code.

"My message to immigrants: You are not alone. We stand with you. We will fight for you and your rights every day. Do not live in fear. A new day is coming after this election."

2) New day - sounds like sun worship. Did some googling. This came up. …

3) Jan 26 2010:
“hidden symbolism of the ‘The New Dawn’ motif - the Rising Sun beaming over the horizon....from the ancient mythological worlds... to modern times in major corporations, religious groups and...President Barack Obama's Administration.” …

4) “
“A light will shine down from somewhere. It will light upon you. You will experience an epiphany. And you will say to yourself, I have to vote for Barack. I have to do it.”

-Barack Obama

5) The video link does not work. See quote linking the Masons to the sun motif.

“These were the men of 'towardness,' those sons of tomorrow, whose symbol was... a blazing sun rising over the mountains of the east."

-Manly P. Hall
Masonic Orders of Fraternity” …

"Obama's Rising Sun

Everywhere I go I am seeing these Obama bumper stickers and yard signs with his campaign's trademark logo of the rising sun.”

“While Obama's cult followers cannot fathom the idea that Obama does not represent them, but rather the international banking cartels he works for, also little do they understand the significance of his campaign logo”

Link to logo graphic - …

Interesting status update here.

And here.

“Masonic Fraternal Police Department” scandal - Kamala Harris (@latimes) …

“So what exactly is the esoteric significance of the rising sun? As James H. Billington describes in his book, Fire in the Minds of Men (p. 6): “—


“A recurrent mythic model for revolutionaries -early romantics, the young Marx, the Russians of Lenin's time-was Prometheus, who stole fire from the gods for the use of mankind.“

“The Promethean faith of revolutionaries resembled in many respects the general modem belief that science would lead men out of darkness into light.“

“But there was also the more pointed millennial assumption that, on the new day that was dawning, the sun would never set.“

“The Promethean faith of revolutionaries resembled in many respects the general modem belief that science would lead men out of darkness into light.”

“But there was also the more pointed millennial assumption that, on the new day that was dawning, the sun would never set.”

“Early during the French upheaval was born a 'solar myth of the revolution,' suggesting that the sun was rising on a new era in which darkness would vanish forever.”

“This image became implanted 'at a level of consciousness that simultaneously interpreted something real and produced a new reality.'”

“The new reality they sought was radically secular and stridently simple. The ideal was not the balanced complexity of the new American federation, but the occult simplicity of its great seal: an all-seeing eye atop a pyramid over the words Novus Ordo Seclorum."

“The rising sun represents the dawn of a "new day" or, more precisely, a new age—the New Age of Aquarius. In the case of Obama's campaign logo, the rising sun is also used in reference to Obama himself, implying that—“

“Obama is one of the "sons of tomorrow" referenced by occultist Manly P. Hall.

“Is Obama that Promethean figure who "stole fire from the gods for the use of mankind"?”

“Could this be why the media seems so adamant on casting Obama in an almost godlike image? What is the true reason for this?” … …

"It's not what you look at that matters. It's what you see." - Henry David Thoreau

“Set to Pink Floyd's classic song of the same name, Set Control for the Heart of the Sun is a composition that I did,”—

“that takes a video and pictorial odyssey into the Sun symbolism highlighting the ritualism associated with President Barack Obama; popular culture advertisement; masonic overtures from entertainers like Jay-Z, Rihanna and Kanye West;”

“the Fellowship of the Sun from the HBO series True Blood; the Vatican Church State; the movie Lord of the Rings; crop circles; the rising Phoenix; and the Winged Disk.”

“Ultimately illustrating the link between these modern symbols and the resonance with ancient mythology and archetypes such as with Shamash the Babylonian God, King Pharaoh Ahkenaton, Horus, Osiris, Isis, Mithra and countless others.”

I never would have thought of all this in a million years.

Just like  “a thousand points of light.”

Like someone said - Lucifer the light bringer.

Also, look - CNN "New Day."

And NBC's "Today."

Maybe something, maybe not.

By Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal. All opinions are the author's own. Public domain. Free photo via Pixabay.

NY Times Advocates Obstruction of Justice and Sedition

Today the New York Times published an op-ed by Kate Cronin-Furman who states:
“The identities of the individual @CBP agents who are physically separating children from their families & staffing the detention centers are not undiscoverable.”

To the government: Please implement protections for CBP, ICE, USCIS and all personnel associated with immigration and border enforcement. This is urgent.

Cronin is not an American citizen but her words, if she were, could encompass a number of crimes, including sedition.

Here is a simple definition of sedition.
"Sedition is overt conduct, such as speech and organization, that tends toward insurrection against the established order. Sedition often includes subversion of a constitution and incitement of discontent towards, or resistance against established authority."
18 U.S. Code Section 2384 defines the crime of seditious conspiracy.
"If two or more persons in any State or Territory, or in any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, conspire to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, they shall each be fined or imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both."
Separately, the New York Times should be investigated for publishing a threat against Federal officials (118 USC section 115). well  as 18 US Code Chapter 73, Obstruction of Justice.

The newspaper is using its publishing platform to threaten the safety of law enforcement and interfere as well.

Just like was enabling child sex trafficking and was seized, the New York Times can’t hide behind "it's free speech, we're not responsible" anymore.
By Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal. All opinions are the author's own. Public domain. NY Times logo via Wikimedia.

Fragment of Memory Regarding Q - From DINFOS Speech (March 2018)

In March 2018, I gave a speech about government communication at DINFOS.  There, I made the point that Q is 100% real in my view, and even if you don't think so, you must take seriously as a government communicator that people trust screenshots more than the government. (This was not the first time I'd made such an argument.)

At the time, this discussion was unexpected and did not win me many friends except for one person in the audience who said "great speech," and another who recognized and approached me a year to shake my hand. 

A lot of people actually didn't know what I was talking about when I said "Q" and I even drew the "Q" in the air when I was speaking. 

I think they were more pissed that I said they weren't ready to be good communicators, but they could become "more ready" over time. 

By Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal. All opinions are the author's own. Public domain.

Miscellaneous Memories From The Obama Administration

During the Obama administration I became extremely concerned that the government, in its communication effort, was substituting technical prowess (knowing how to send a good tweet) for substantive and strategic prowess (saying the right things accurately). 

I surmised that this was due to the communication skill exhibited by the Obama team; that they just didn't want feds in the way; and I did not think of this as especially nefarious, although I had my suspicions due to Fast & Furious, Ambassador Stevens, etc. 

I remember expressing my suspicions and being told that all administrations are essentially the same, they want to do what they want to do, and Obama is no different, and I tried to live with that but felt very uneasy. 

An acquaintance used to message me over Facebook. She was afraid to speak out loud her grave concerns.  We were all afraid. It wasn't like in the Trump years. If you opposed Obama, you were basically considered an awful, racist person. 

For me it wasn't so much about him, although I used to read this blog called "The Ulsterman Report," and it gave me the shudders. 

It was more like a sense that something was very wrong. I had a colleague who called it "the pod people," like "the pod people" are coming into town and you are interacting with individuals who *seem* like humans but are really sort of possessed. 

I thought my friend was a bit dramatic and extreme but she turned out to be right about the things she said. Example - sexual harassment and domestic abuse practiced by the most senior people, and they and their buddies walked off scot-free. 

Friend said that the people in power actually want to hire bad people so they can control them. She also said that the real insider threat always looks like you, not the "bogeyman" they show you on TV; and they show up on time and act professional and normal in every way, so they can do their dirty deeds unsuspected. 

Unfortunately every industry and administration has its bad people no matter who is in charge and that is a totally separate matter; it's not a "deep state" thing; it's an "abuse of power" thing and some just do. 

I remember when I worked at USAID under Obama, and the civil servants I worked for were very much in favor of the wonderful things we were doing, but had to ensure fiscal control and accountability. 

This was a challenge because people would go off to the mission in the field -- all they wanted to do was help people -- and it would be hard to track what they were doing. 

This, to me, again is normal government stuff, it is not nefarious but part of being in a helping profession. The problem came about with Obama, that the agency felt extraordinarily politicized - it did not feel like there was any distinction between the civil service & him. 

I was not a political type but this made me really uncomfortable. 

By Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal. All opinions are the author's own. Public domain.

The Vital Importance Of Government Communication In This Undeclared Civil War - Notes 6/29/2019

Yesterday I started a discussion on the Federal Communicators listserv regarding why the gov hadn't responded to a sitting Member of Congress calling  U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement and U.S. Customs and Border Protection "radicalized, criminal agencies". 

These are law enforcement agencies - making this seditious. 

The saga with the Federal Communicators Network has been interesting and difficult as I have been involved with them since I started working for the government in 2004 and take great pride in being a government communicator (all opinions are my own). 

I have organized events for them, recruited best practice speakers, and when they were almost dismantled in 2012, I worked with an unbelievably awesome team of volunteers to re-constitute it with a governance structure. 

But I have disagreed with their official refusal to take on substantive issues.  As a result, recently, I was blocked by them on Twitter over my open support for @NSA_QIL2 being a government-backed entity, and calling them out on it. (Admittedly, I shouldn't have done that - it was too much for the level of consciousness we have right now - my bad.) 

In any case, expressed this concern to the listserv about a Congressperson calling federal law enforcement agencies "criminal" - this is an obvious threat to public safety and totally undermines citizens' confidence in government. 

A couple of people said "we shouldn't discuss this here" and there were a couple of other negative comments. But shockingly, a few people stepped forward and said we should discuss it, it has value to discuss.

Keep in mind, my question was not a political one, and I would have asked it regardless of who was running the country. The issue is - if government communicators can't respond to the most basic accusations - what are we doing here? 

No, we don't control what is said by leadership (a fact many people don't understand) - but shouldn't we at least discuss it? 

And then - this was unbelievable - someone said "wait - there is a press conference happening in a few minutes" - and there was indeed a press conference with acting DHS Secretary McAleenan. (My notes are here.)

Not sure as to how the timing worked out on that, but Secretary McAleenan answered all the accusations and nobody seems to have tuned in, picked it up, watched for themselves, or reported on it. Which tells me that the media doesn't want to cover the truth. 

There is a larger point at hand. 

The psychological mindset among anti-Trump people (at least here in DC) is that he somehow isn't entitled to be President, he isn't a legitimate President, "orange man bad," and so everything else just flows from this basic illegitimacy. 

The fact that more than a few people stepped up to say - let's at least have a conversation about how we handle accusations - is a sign of psychological health breaking through this brainwashing. 

I have to tell you that I do not understand why the communication function is so poor during this Administration, to the point where agencies literally cannot clarify what they are doing. Not talking does make you look nefarious. 

To those who criticized me for bringing up the topic, I said - I would defend any agency - and this includes agencies I routinely criticize, such as the FBI and CIA, because we know that despite the bad that exists everywhere, we need them. 

Last point, and as I previously mentioned this is foundational, particularly to understanding the vital importance of government communication 

President Trump absolutely did not decide on his own to run for President, in my opinion. He was recruited by the military intelligence community and has their support.

The reason I believe this is that there is 100% no way that any individual could survive the dangerous cesspool that is Washington DC without the support of the military intelligence community. Even if they're significantly divided in many ways, that base has to be there. 

The arrests are coming, I do believe that as well, but more importantly the public has to be educated and aware as to why those arrests should come, and why President Trump is not the ogre that his detractors want people to believe. 

God bless you all. God bless our great Nation. God bless all branches of the military, all law enforcement agencies, all volunteers, all of you who put yourselves on the line for the rest of us. 


By Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal. All opinions are the author's own. Public domain. Free photo via Pixabay

Notes on Press Conference With Acting DHS Secretary Kevin McAleenan 6/28/19

(DHS) Acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan Holds Press Conference on Supplemental Funding Request:

McAleenan: Change the law. “We want to be able to address immigration the border” to “keep families together.”

McAleenan: Apply for asylum from the home country.

McAleenan had a third one but he said it too fast.

McAleenan - recommendations come from task force are not arbitrary.

McAleenan - not waiting for Congress - working with Mexico to stop the smugglers

McAleenan - Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador helping to stop human smuggling criminal networks

McAleenan - anticipate 25% fewer illegal crossings in June

...when they tally the numbers

McAleenan - “for months warning of increasing numbers of children arriving at border” - 7 testimonies to Congress since May 1 - “breaking point” 14,000 in custody - “facilities not enough”

McAleenan “unsubstantiated allegations” re Clint Station - actual conditions clean

McAleenan - $500 million invested - care of migrants - “contrary to reporting children are receiving access to key supplies”

McAleenan - “real story” is about Border Patrol agents and numerous others “working tirelessly” - story is about “vulnerable populations” “smuggling cycle” “children in danger”

(Valeria - this is the child who died with her father Oscar)

McAleenan - border enforcement has to happen not only at the border but in the “interior” - that is a “balanced” process

McAleenan - the story is the children and families victimized by smugglers

Question about El Paso (this is going fast) - “huge area, logistical challenge”

Question - what will you do if supplemental is passed - how will you spend the money

McAleenan - identify children crossing without passport - “Guatemala addressing that”

McAleenan - stop human smuggling at the source - DNA testing, children trafficked from Guatemala and Honduras are “rented” and sold - these countries are very concerned about their children!

McAleenan - DHS is working with partner countries to share intelligence to stop human smuggling at the source

McAleenan - HHS identifying facilities in Texas and Oklahoma - teenage boys a focus - unaccompanied minors

McAleenan (my paraphrase) - DHS wants to keep families together and children away from smugglers who steal them

McAleenan - “the supplemental is for the humanitarian mission”

McAleenan - “it’s more about the pull factors” than weather (don’t know what “pull factors” are)

Looking for “continued reduction in numbers” which should address “capacity” - focus is on “the criminals who are profiting from it”

The press conference is over.

This sounds exactly like the DHS/CBP I know very well.

Thank you to these selfless law enforcement agents and those who are helping them.


Opinions are the author’s own. Public domain. Free stock photo via Pixabay.

The Truth About Migrant Deaths And The Border Patrol

I used to work for @CBP as a public affairs specialist (2005-2012), rebranded, won IABC Silver Inkwell Award, and was managing editor for agency magazine "Frontline" for some time. This is my name in the first edition of the magazine in Spring 2008 …

Like everyone else I was very upset to see a story in the news about a father and daughter who died trying to cross into the United States after a frustrating wait. Something seemed off about this story however and so I kept reading.What follows are nonpartisan facts/analysis.

CBP's mission is to protect the borders at and between the ports of entry. ICE's job is to remove people from the United States who are not legally allowed to be here. …

We had border fencing more than a decade ago, it was controversial more than a decade ago, and so CBP called itself a "border management" agency to help alleviate some of those concerns.

The job of a Border Patrol agent is to keep illegal crossers out. It is not their job to let people in because the country they are coming from is uninhabitable.

Border Patrol agents routinely stop criminals.

The National Guard has been helping to put up barriers on the southern border for more than a decade.

Illegal cross-border traffic is a "risk to society."

A 2006 @USGAO report said the Border Patrol needed oversight because "Border-Crossing Deaths Have Doubled" 1995-2005 (over 1985-1995). The GAO is nonpartisan. …

Here is a Congressional Research Service report from 2010 on the role of the U.S. Border Patrol with respect to U.S. border security. …

Here is a visualization from the report (p. 26) of the data. You can see the downward trend in the first decade, followed by the upward trend in the second.

The discovery of the dead father and daughter several days ago is by no means the first, as you can see from the report. Undocumented migrants suffer and die daily.

The report notes the difficulty of collecting data due to the multiple hands in the pot. (p. 25)

The report notes that "border crossings have become more hazardous since the (Border Patrol) 'Prevention through Deterrence' policy went into effect in 1995, resulting in an increase in illegal migrant deaths along the Southwest border." The Border Patrol took steps here--

Because the mortality rate per apprehension significantly rose in a decade.

"From 1.6 deaths per 10,000 apprehensions in FY1999 to 7.6 deaths per 10,000 apprehensions in FY2009."

Remember, this is 2010: "The Border Patrol has taken several steps to address this problem in recent years, including the previously discussed Border Safety Initiative and the specialized BORSTAR search and rescue teams."

These agents help people in distress.

Efforts continued & were written about in the agency's publication at least as far as June 2016. …

"The U.S. Border Patrol and its partners are once again marshaling resources this summer to rescue migrants who succumb to the Southwest's brutal deserts"

How many undocumented migrants die and why do they die? per the June 2016 article:

"Border Patrol statistics vary, but upwards of 300 illegal immigrants die in the Southwest each year before completing their long, arduous and dangerous trek"

"—and those numbers are just those who perish after entering the U.S. During fiscal year 2015, 240 died; 2014, 308; and in 2013, 445."

"Nature takes its toll, but so do the smugglers with little regard for life and safety. Smugglers often abandon migrants when they can’t keep pace. Robbery, violence, torture, rape, kidnapping, slavery and even murder by human trafficking rings are among the risks"--

"--during their up to 1,600-mile journey from Central America through Mexico to the U.S. border."

"Many migrants, including unaccompanied children, perished well before reaching the U.S. riding atop freight trains for days to avoid Mexican checkpoints. Fatigued, they fall off the car while asleep, explained Manuel Padilla, Rio Grande Valley chief patrol agent."

The 2010 CRS report noted that Border Patrol agents face violence in their assigned border duties. …

2011 Congressional testimony from the Border Patrol about the ways the U.S. government tries to prevent these tragedies. …

So the "migrant death border crisis," as Time magazine calls it, is not new.
But the cause is not the United States. …

"it is easier to blame the gringos,but what are the governments of Central America doing to solve this humanitarian crisis?"
- comment on the original story concerning the death of Salvadoran migrant Óscar Alberto Martínez Ramírez & his daughter Valeria …

Several odd things about this story, first reported here.

How did a photojournalist happen to be present?
If the bodies were missing overnight, why weren't they bloated?
Why are the photos of the bodies lacking anyone around them? …

These are the 3 photos from the article for reference.

Julia Le Duc is the photojournalist who took the photos. In 2014 Reporters Without Borders noted that she has been the target of threats. …

"MEXICO - Endangered Internet
Online coverage of drug-trafficking under threat in Tamaulipas
4 August 2014"

"The authorities in Mexico’s northeastern border state of Tamaulipas are said to (be) behind smear campaigns and acts of intimidation targeting journalists and bloggers in this region."

"Julia Le Duc, a reporter for the news website La Jornada, is also one of the targets of the same online smear campaign by the same users."

This kind of headline is an immediate tearjerker and rightfully so. …

But we need to do some critical thinking, too. The @guardian published an interview with the photojournalist Julia Le Duc. …

"Julia Le Duc is a reporter for La Jornada in Matamoros, the Mexican city directly across the Rio Grande from Brownsville, Texas. Her shocking photographs...cast a fresh spotlight on the migration crisis at America’s southern border."

"Here she describes how the images came into being."

"On Sunday there was an emergency call about a woman who was in a desperate way down by the river. We heard the report and went down to the river where she was shouting and screaming that the current had taken her daughter." -- but she doesn't photograph this.

"They’d arrived here earlier that morning and they went straight to the [international] bridge to ask about applying for asylum, but they were told the American migration office was closed because it was a weekend...lots of other people in the line ahead of them."

"A few months ago there were about 1,800 people waiting in Matamoros for an asylum interview. It’s gone down to about 300 now" --> isn't that good?

"So the family were walking back from the bridge when [Martínez] stopped and looked at the river – and said 'Here’s where we cross'”. -- so the father decided not to wait at all.

"He crossed first with the little girl and he left her on the American side. Then he turned back to get his wife, but the girl went into the water after him. When he went to save her, the current took them both." -- this is the story I have seen.

"Someone called the rescue services...and the search went on until after 11pm, but even with boats and lamps they couldn’t find them." -- So this happened the previous day? They were missing for an entire day, not an hour?

"The next morning, they continued in the light of day and, at about 10.15 in the morning, the firemen found the two bodies. That’s when I took the pictures, before the scene was taped off." -- How long were they in? The child is clearly wearing a diaper; it looks fresh.

"I’ve been a crime reporter for many years, and I’ve seen a lot of bodies – and a lot of drownings. The Río Bravo [Rio Grande] is a very strong river: you think it’s just shallow, but there are lots of currents and whirlpools." -- this doesn't look like people caught in that.

And again, why did she take so few pictures? There is nothing around the victims at all. There is nothing of the officials near the victims, either.

"You get numb to it, but when you see something like this it re-sensitizes you. You could see that the father had put her inside his T-shirt so the current wouldn’t pull her away."

-- Clearly we see this. But the question is, why do we see so little else?
By Dr. Dannielle Blumenthal. All opinions are the author's own. Public domain.