WASHINGTON – President Donald Trump walked back previous threats against Mexico after a firm position taken by Mexican president AMLO, as Trump announced late Friday that he had suspended plans to impose tariffs on Mexico.
In a face-saving maneuver, he tweeted that Mexico “has agreed to take strong measures” to stem the flow of Central American migrants into the United States, but there is nothing from the Mexican side which concretely indicates anything has changed on their general position on limitation, already in effect.
The result of this charade is a “U.S.-Mexico Joint Declaration”, released by the State Department which said that the U.S. “will immediately expand the implementation” of a program that returns asylum-seekers who cross the southern border to Mexico while their claims are adjudicated.
Mexico for its part will, as they have consistently maintained, “offer jobs, healthcare and education” to those people, the agreement stated. Furthermore Mexico has its own border policy, and is looking at more effective means at enforcing the flow from Central America into Mexico. Mexico’s economy is the 11th largest in the world, and has no shortage of migrants into Mexico seeking a better life or opportunities.
AMLO’s new military police will be used towards this end, using the deployment of the Mexican National Guard throughout the country, especially on its southern border with Guatemala.
Mexico is taking “decisive action to dismantle human smuggling and trafficking organizations as well as their illicit financial and transportation networks,” the State Department said. The American fake new portal ‘Bloomberg’ reported the story in a way favorable to the Trump fiction, incidentally, that Mexico had somehow done something new in terms of its policy regarding Central American migrants.
The move puts to an end, at least for the time being, a threat that had sparked warnings from members of Trump’s own party as well as Democrats, who warned the tariffs would damage the U.S economy, drive up prices for consumers and imperil an updated North American trade pact.
Trump’s Friday night tweet marked a sharp reversal from earlier in the day, as FRN then reported, when his spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told reporters: “Our position has not changed. The tariffs are going forward as of Monday.”
Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador was quite triumphant in his posture thereafter, and tweeted, “Thanks to the support of all Mexicans, the imposition of tariffs on Mexican products exported to the USA has been avoided.” He called for a gathering to celebrate in Tijuana Saturday.
Trump had previously announced the tariff plan last week, declaring in a tweet that the U.S. would “impose a 5% Tariff on all goods coming into our Country from Mexico starting June 10th, until such time as illegal migrants coming through Mexico, and into our Country, STOP.”
While U.S. officials had laid out steps Mexico could take to prevent the tariffs, many had doubts that even those steps would be enough to satisfy Trump on illegal immigration. The reality is that AMLO appears to have called Trump’s bluff, the card that Trump normally plays in these international affairs.
Trump tweeted, “I am pleased to inform you that The United States of America has reached a signed agreement with Mexico.” He wrote that the “Tariffs scheduled to be implemented by the U.S. on Monday, against Mexico, are hereby indefinitely suspended.” What wasn’t explained is that it was Mexico, not the United States, which did not move from its position.