Friday, August 12

They were all so white they looked Russian

They were all so white that they looked Russian. there wasn’t a fucking Black in the photos, man. In the photos of Madrid, I say. The ones in the palace, the ones in the museum, the ones in the embassy hall. Even the brunettes were blondes. They looked Russian. Because they were white, they looked like people: in their blazers, in their draped dresses, with their tie pin and stiletto heel. They came to Madrid to put their arms around each other’s shoulders as they negotiated weapons of mass destruction and to smile broadly when the word war. Her smile was not as white, however, as that of the dead in the photo of Melilla. Pity dentures, what a waste (didn’t those people make soap with the body fat of the victims?).

The thing is about bodies, yes. I mean, lives. Black matters less. Or nothing, like the ones on the fence. While the white feet stepped on carpets like clouds, the black feet fell to the earth of the mass grave. Let it be known, 37 lives. Since they were black, they don’t look like people. Immigrants. Sub-Saharan. Africans. Blacks. This is what people who are victims of border violence are called. In addition to the 37 dead, hundreds of wounded whose status is unknown. Hardly survivors, hardly people. With his biography, his family, his plans, his extreme undertaking. His photo ended up being a mass of smiles cut short by police brutality. White on black.

There is a kind of poetic justice in the coincidence of both photos, the white photo and the black photo. That way no one is fooled and everything fits together better, even the gigantic military base that Mohamed VI allowed the Pentagon to build in Tan-Tan, on the Atlantic coast of Morocco, at the foot of Western Sahara. They don’t even go around with rhetorical dissimulations: in 2008, the United States installed the Africa Command there. Military jargon can become transparent. No command, of course, has ruled on the inhumane treatment and the omission of relief that occurred on June 24 on the border with Spain. The Pentagon, NATO, the kings of both sides, the ministers and the presidents of the government are so busy with the business of militarization that migration policies are pure leisure for them. As if those policies were not about people. All in all, they are black.

The majority of the survivors of the border violence came from Sudan and Chad, as confirmed by the group from Melilla Solidarity Wheels. They arrived traumatized by the war, impoverished, uprooted, separated from their loved ones, discriminated against, exploited and mistreated on their long and painful journey. They dreamed of the international protection of the Spain of white Sánchez, the Spain of white Grande-Marlaska, the Spain of white -almost albino- Albares. But those who did not die in the crime of the fence or are in some basement of the El Hassani hospital in Nador, are detained de facto at the CETI (Centre for Temporary Stay of Immigrants) in Melilla. Illegally detained and also denouncing violence by security agents of the Clece company. The blacks. The whites have said that everything is correct.

If the dead on the fences could see the photos that the whites of the war have taken in Madrid in recent days, they would be invaded by a once again deadly desolation. If they could, from the black pit, see the red and green of the shawls, the blue of the suits, the yellow teeth. The desolation of being black. The desolation of not even looking like a person for being a fucking black, friend. The desolation that your life doesn’t matter because you’re black. Not like the lives, so important, of the white people in those photos. All so white they looked Russian.



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