OLD BAD NEWS

Those photos of immigrant children “caged” by the US? They’re from 2014

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"America First"
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This post has been updated.

Update, June 18: Since this story was published, new photos have been released by the US Customs and Border Protection, revealing current detainment conditions for immigrants apprehended at the border. The current conditions closely resemble the Obama-era “cages” depicted in photos from 2014. In both cases, children are shown separated from their families, sleeping on the floor within steel-wire enclosures. Here’s what one detainment facility looks like today:

Photo inside U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) detention facility shows detainees inside fenced areas at Rio Grande Valley Centralized Processing Center in Texas. Picture taken on June 17, 2018, provided by US Customs and Border Protection.
Children separated from their parents are provided with metal foil blankets. (US Customs and Border Protection)
Photo inside U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) detention facility shows detainees inside fenced areas at Rio Grande Valley Centralized Processing Center in Texas. Picture taken on June 17, 2018, provided by US Customs and Border Protection.
Children who are separated from their parents are supposed to be quickly moved to foster homes or the care of relatives. (US Customs and Border Protection)
Photo inside U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) detention facility shows detainees inside fenced areas at Rio Grande Valley Centralized Processing Center in Texas. Picture taken on June 17, 2018, provided by US Customs and Border Protection.
Thousands of immigrant children have been separated from their parents in detention, according to the Department of Homeland Security. (US Customs and Border Protection)
Photo inside U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) detention facility shows detainees inside fenced areas at Rio Grande Valley Centralized Processing Center in Texas. Picture taken on June 17, 2018, provided by US Customs and Border Protection.
Wire faces enclose detainees. (US Customs and Border Protection)
Photo inside U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) detention facility shows detainees inside fenced areas at Rio Grande Valley Centralized Processing Center in Texas. Picture taken on June 17, 2018, provided by US Customs and Border Protection.
Inside the Trump administration’s “cages” for detained immigrants. (US Customs and Border Protection)

The Obama-era photos, shown below, were initially referenced in May as proof of the cruelty of the Trump administration’s crackdown on immigration. At the time, some decried the pictures as left-leaning propaganda. On May 29, Donald Trump tweeted that the images predate his administration, and accused Democrat of trying “to make us look bad.” However, the newest photos released by US Customs and Border Protection show very similar conditions under the Trump administration.

The Obama-era photos were originally shot for the Associated Press by photographer Ross D. Franklin, during a Jun. 18, 2014 visit to the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) placement center in Nogales, Arizona. The shelters in those photos have since been closed.

This is not the first example of apparently harsh US treatment toward immigrants being attributed to the Trump administration. The recent examples below all date from the Obama administration:

  • the existence of a special bus for detained children
  • a Senate report (pdf) about a dozen immigrant children in the US government’s custody who were released to human traffickers
  • an American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) report detailing “a pattern of intimidation, harassment, physical abuse, refusal of medical services, and improper deportation” by the US Customs and Border Patrol between 2009 and 2014

Here are the 2014 photos from the Nogales facility.

Immigrant Children Schools Arizona
Two young girls watch a 2014 World Cup soccer match on a television from their holding area. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Young boys sleep in a holding cell where hundreds of mostly Central American immigrant children are being processed and held at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Nogales Placement Center on Wednesday, June 18, 2014, in Nogales, Ariz.  CPB provided media tours Wednesday of two locations in Brownsville, Texas, and Nogales, that have been central to processing the more than 47,000 unaccompanied children who have entered the country illegally since Oct. 1. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, Pool)
Young boys sleep in a holding cell. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Immigration Overload
Detainees sleep and watch television in a holding cell. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Immigration Overload Photo Gallery
Young boys sleep in a holding cell. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Immigration Overload
A young boy walks over to use the toilet while in his holding area. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Immigrant Children
Young detainees escorted to an area to make phone calls. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Immigration Overload Photo Gallery
Hundreds of mostly Central American immigrant children are separated into age and gender holding areas as they are being processed and held at the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Nogales Placement Center on Wednesday, June 18, 2014, in Nogales, Ariz.  CPB provided media tours Wednesday of two locations in Brownsville, Texas, and Nogales, that have been central to processing the more than 47,000 unaccompanied children who have entered the country illegally since Oct. 1. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, Pool)
Hundreds of mostly Central American immigrant children are separated into age and gender holding areas as they are being processed. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Trump Immigration
Two female detainees sleep in a holding cell. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
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