The story

Review: Volume 36 - Military History

Review: Volume 36 - Military History

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The obliteration of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in August 1945 brought the world to a stand still. This unimaginable shock confirmed to the world that the race to develop a working atomic weapon during World War II had been won by the American-led international effort. Horrific and controversial even today, these first uses of the atomic bomb had intense ramifications not only on the continued development of the bomb, but also on politics and popular culture. As well as the technological development, historian James Delgado also examines how the US Army Air Force had to develop the capacity to deliver the weapons, and examines the sites where development and testing took place, in order to give a comprehensive history of the dawning of the nuclear age.

Few people over the last century are better qualified to discuss leadership than Field Marshal Bernard Montgomery, the charismatic and idiosyncratic Second World War leader. It was a subject to which he devoted much thought. 'In one short sentence, it is captaincy that counts', he writes. Using personal studies of famous political military and industrial figures, Monty analyses the qualities that make for effective leadership. Being, by any definition, a frank and honest man he does not hesitate to highlight perceived deficiencies. Among his case studies are the Generals of the two world wars, Haig, French, Gort, Wavell and Alexander. Political leaders include Cromwell and Nehru, Khrushchev, de Gaulle and Mao. In this edition a fascination and contentious comparison of Churchill and Eisenhower appears for the first time. This book was first published as The Path to Leadership in 1961. This is an expanded edition.

In the wake of the bloody civil war that followed Finland's independence from Russia in 1917, the border between the two countries was established across the Karelian Isthmus, an area long fought over by Russia, Finland and Sweden - and only 32km from the military and industrial city of Petrograd. As such, both sides began an intensive period of fortification and defensive planning. When the Winter War broke out in November 1939, the complex and heavily defended Mannerheim Line was fought over fiercely, with the network of fortifications coming under heavy bombardment, air attack and armoured assault.Through an analysis of the background and operational history of the Mannerheim Line, this book attempts to dispel myths and provide an accurate assessment of its great historical importance.

The Red Line and the Rat Line

I n 2011 ​ Barack Obama led an allied military intervention in Libya without consulting the US Congress. Last August, after the sarin attack on the Damascus suburb of Ghouta, he was ready to launch an allied air strike, this time to punish the Syrian government for allegedly crossing the &lsquored line&rsquo he had set in 2012 on the use of chemical weapons. * Then with less than two days to go before the planned strike, he announced that he would seek congressional approval for the intervention. The strike was postponed as Congress prepared for hearings, and subsequently cancelled when Obama accepted Assad&rsquos offer to relinquish his chemical arsenal in a deal brokered by Russia. Why did Obama delay and then relent on Syria when he was not shy about rushing into Libya? The answer lies in a clash between those in the administration who were committed to enforcing the red line, and military leaders who thought that going to war was both unjustified and potentially disastrous.

Obama&rsquos change of mind had its origins at Porton Down, the defence laboratory in Wiltshire. British intelligence had obtained a sample of the sarin used in the 21 August attack and analysis demonstrated that the gas used didn&rsquot match the batches known to exist in the Syrian army&rsquos chemical weapons arsenal. The message that the case against Syria wouldn&rsquot hold up was quickly relayed to the US joint chiefs of staff. The British report heightened doubts inside the Pentagon the joint chiefs were already preparing to warn Obama that his plans for a far-reaching bomb and missile attack on Syria&rsquos infrastructure could lead to a wider war in the Middle East. As a consequence the American officers delivered a last-minute caution to the president, which, in their view, eventually led to his cancelling the attack.

For months there had been acute concern among senior military leaders and the intelligence community about the role in the war of Syria&rsquos neighbours, especially Turkey. Prime Minister Recep Erdoğan was known to be supporting the al-Nusra Front, a jihadist faction among the rebel opposition, as well as other Islamist rebel groups. &lsquoWe knew there were some in the Turkish government,&rsquo a former senior US intelligence official, who has access to current intelligence, told me, &lsquowho believed they could get Assad&rsquos nuts in a vice by dabbling with a sarin attack inside Syria &ndash and forcing Obama to make good on his red line threat.&rsquo

The joint chiefs also knew that the Obama administration&rsquos public claims that only the Syrian army had access to sarin were wrong. The American and British intelligence communities had been aware since the spring of 2013 that some rebel units in Syria were developing chemical weapons. On 20 June analysts for the US Defense Intelligence Agency issued a highly classified five-page &lsquotalking points&rsquo briefing for the DIA&rsquos deputy director, David Shedd, which stated that al-Nusra maintained a sarin production cell: its programme, the paper said, was &lsquothe most advanced sarin plot since al-Qaida&rsquos pre-9/11 effort&rsquo. (According to a Defense Department consultant, US intelligence has long known that al-Qaida experimented with chemical weapons, and has a video of one of its gas experiments with dogs.) The DIA paper went on: &lsquoPrevious IC [intelligence community] focus had been almost entirely on Syrian CW [chemical weapons] stockpiles now we see ANF attempting to make its own CW &hellip Al-Nusrah Front&rsquos relative freedom of operation within Syria leads us to assess the group&rsquos CW aspirations will be difficult to disrupt in the future.&rsquo The paper drew on classified intelligence from numerous agencies: &lsquoTurkey and Saudi-based chemical facilitators,&rsquo it said, &lsquowere attempting to obtain sarin precursors in bulk, tens of kilograms, likely for the anticipated large scale production effort in Syria.&rsquo (Asked about the DIA paper, a spokesperson for the director of national intelligence said: &lsquoNo such paper was ever requested or produced by intelligence community analysts.&rsquo)

Last May, more than ten members of the al-Nusra Front were arrested in southern Turkey with what local police told the press were two kilograms of sarin. In a 130-page indictment the group was accused of attempting to purchase fuses, piping for the construction of mortars, and chemical precursors for sarin. Five of those arrested were freed after a brief detention. The others, including the ringleader, Haytham Qassab, for whom the prosecutor requested a prison sentence of 25 years, were released pending trial. In the meantime the Turkish press has been rife with speculation that the Erdoğan administration has been covering up the extent of its involvement with the rebels. In a news conference last summer, Aydin Sezgin, Turkey&rsquos ambassador to Moscow, dismissed the arrests and claimed to reporters that the recovered &lsquosarin&rsquo was merely &lsquoanti-freeze&rsquo.

The DIA paper took the arrests as evidence that al-Nusra was expanding its access to chemical weapons. It said Qassab had &lsquoself-identified&rsquo as a member of al-Nusra, and that he was directly connected to Abd-al-Ghani, the &lsquoANF emir for military manufacturing&rsquo. Qassab and his associate Khalid Ousta worked with Halit Unalkaya, an employee of a Turkish firm called Zirve Export, who provided &lsquoprice quotes for bulk quantities of sarin precursors&rsquo. Abd-al-Ghani&rsquos plan was for two associates to &lsquoperfect a process for making sarin, then go to Syria to train others to begin large scale production at an unidentified lab in Syria&rsquo. The DIA paper said that one of his operatives had purchased a precursor on the &lsquoBaghdad chemical market&rsquo, which &lsquohas supported at least seven CW efforts since 2004&rsquo.

A series of chemical weapon attacks in March and April 2013 was investigated over the next few months by a special UN mission to Syria. A person with close knowledge of the UN&rsquos activity in Syria told me that there was evidence linking the Syrian opposition to the first gas attack, on 19 March in Khan Al-Assal, a village near Aleppo. In its final report in December, the mission said that at least 19 civilians and one Syrian soldier were among the fatalities, along with scores of injured. It had no mandate to assign responsibility for the attack, but the person with knowledge of the UN&rsquos activities said: &lsquoInvestigators interviewed the people who were there, including the doctors who treated the victims. It was clear that the rebels used the gas. It did not come out in public because no one wanted to know.&rsquo

In the months before the attacks began, a former senior Defense Department official told me, the DIA was circulating a daily classified report known as SYRUP on all intelligence related to the Syrian conflict, including material on chemical weapons. But in the spring, distribution of the part of the report concerning chemical weapons was severely curtailed on the orders of Denis McDonough, the White House chief of staff. &lsquoSomething was in there that triggered a shit fit by McDonough,&rsquo the former Defense Department official said. &lsquoOne day it was a huge deal, and then, after the March and April sarin attacks&rsquo &ndash he snapped his fingers &ndash &lsquoit&rsquos no longer there.&rsquo The decision to restrict distribution was made as the joint chiefs ordered intensive contingency planning for a possible ground invasion of Syria whose primary objective would be the elimination of chemical weapons.

The former intelligence official said that many in the US national security establishment had long been troubled by the president&rsquos red line: &lsquoThe joint chiefs asked the White House, &ldquoWhat does red line mean? How does that translate into military orders? Troops on the ground? Massive strike? Limited strike?&rdquo They tasked military intelligence to study how we could carry out the threat. They learned nothing more about the president&rsquos reasoning.&rsquo

In the aftermath of the 21 August attack Obama ordered the Pentagon to draw up targets for bombing. Early in the process, the former intelligence official said, &lsquothe White House rejected 35 target sets provided by the joint chiefs of staff as being insufficiently &ldquopainful&rdquo to the Assad regime.&rsquo The original targets included only military sites and nothing by way of civilian infrastructure. Under White House pressure, the US attack plan evolved into &lsquoa monster strike&rsquo: two wings of B-52 bombers were shifted to airbases close to Syria, and navy submarines and ships equipped with Tomahawk missiles were deployed. &lsquoEvery day the target list was getting longer,&rsquo the former intelligence official told me. &lsquoThe Pentagon planners said we can&rsquot use only Tomahawks to strike at Syria&rsquos missile sites because their warheads are buried too far below ground, so the two B-52 air wings with two-thousand pound bombs were assigned to the mission. Then we&rsquoll need standby search-and-rescue teams to recover downed pilots and drones for target selection. It became huge.&rsquo The new target list was meant to &lsquocompletely eradicate any military capabilities Assad had&rsquo, the former intelligence official said. The core targets included electric power grids, oil and gas depots, all known logistic and weapons depots, all known command and control facilities, and all known military and intelligence buildings.

Britain and France were both to play a part. On 29 August, the day Parliament voted against Cameron&rsquos bid to join the intervention, the Guardian reported that he had already ordered six RAF Typhoon fighter jets to be deployed to Cyprus, and had volunteered a submarine capable of launching Tomahawk missiles. The French air force &ndash a crucial player in the 2011 strikes on Libya &ndash was deeply committed, according to an account in Le Nouvel Observateur François Hollande had ordered several Rafale fighter-bombers to join the American assault. Their targets were reported to be in western Syria.

By the last days of August the president had given the Joint Chiefs a fixed deadline for the launch. &lsquoH hour was to begin no later than Monday morning [2 September], a massive assault to neutralise Assad,&rsquo the former intelligence official said. So it was a surprise to many when during a speech in the White House Rose Garden on 31 August Obama said that the attack would be put on hold, and he would turn to Congress and put it to a vote.

At this stage, Obama&rsquos premise &ndash that only the Syrian army was capable of deploying sarin &ndash was unravelling. Within a few days of the 21 August attack, the former intelligence official told me, Russian military intelligence operatives had recovered samples of the chemical agent from Ghouta. They analysed it and passed it on to British military intelligence this was the material sent to Porton Down. (A spokesperson for Porton Down said: &lsquoMany of the samples analysed in the UK tested positive for the nerve agent sarin.&rsquo MI6 said that it doesn&rsquot comment on intelligence matters.)

The former intelligence official said the Russian who delivered the sample to the UK was &lsquoa good source &ndash someone with access, knowledge and a record of being trustworthy&rsquo. After the first reported uses of chemical weapons in Syria last year, American and allied intelligence agencies &lsquomade an effort to find the answer as to what if anything, was used &ndash and its source&rsquo, the former intelligence official said. &lsquoWe use data exchanged as part of the Chemical Weapons Convention. The DIA&rsquos baseline consisted of knowing the composition of each batch of Soviet-manufactured chemical weapons. But we didn&rsquot know which batches the Assad government currently had in its arsenal. Within days of the Damascus incident we asked a source in the Syrian government to give us a list of the batches the government currently had. This is why we could confirm the difference so quickly.&rsquo

The process hadn&rsquot worked as smoothly in the spring, the former intelligence official said, because the studies done by Western intelligence &lsquowere inconclusive as to the type of gas it was. The word &ldquosarin&rdquo didn&rsquot come up. There was a great deal of discussion about this, but since no one could conclude what gas it was, you could not say that Assad had crossed the president&rsquos red line.&rsquo By 21 August, the former intelligence official went on, &lsquothe Syrian opposition clearly had learned from this and announced that &ldquosarin&rdquo from the Syrian army had been used, before any analysis could be made, and the press and White House jumped at it. Since it now was sarin, &ldquoIt had to be Assad.&rdquo&rsquo

The UK defence staff who relayed the Porton Down findings to the joint chiefs were sending the Americans a message, the former intelligence official said: &lsquoWe&rsquore being set up here.&rsquo (This account made sense of a terse message a senior official in the CIA sent in late August: &lsquoIt was not the result of the current regime. UK & US know this.&rsquo) By then the attack was a few days away and American, British and French planes, ships and submarines were at the ready.

The officer ultimately responsible for the planning and execution of the attack was General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the joint chiefs. From the beginning of the crisis, the former intelligence official said, the joint chiefs had been sceptical of the administration&rsquos argument that it had the facts to back up its belief in Assad&rsquos guilt. They pressed the DIA and other agencies for more substantial evidence. &lsquoThere was no way they thought Syria would use nerve gas at that stage, because Assad was winning the war,&rsquo the former intelligence official said. Dempsey had irritated many in the Obama administration by repeatedly warning Congress over the summer of the danger of American military involvement in Syria. Last April, after an optimistic assessment of rebel progress by the secretary of state, John Kerry, in front of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Dempsey told the Senate Armed Services Committee that &lsquothere&rsquos a risk that this conflict has become stalemated.&rsquo

Dempsey&rsquos initial view after 21 August was that a US strike on Syria &ndash under the assumption that the Assad government was responsible for the sarin attack &ndash would be a military blunder, the former intelligence official said. The Porton Down report caused the joint chiefs to go to the president with a more serious worry: that the attack sought by the White House would be an unjustified act of aggression. It was the joint chiefs who led Obama to change course. The official White House explanation for the turnabout &ndash the story the press corps told &ndash was that the president, during a walk in the Rose Garden with Denis McDonough, his chief of staff, suddenly decided to seek approval for the strike from a bitterly divided Congress with which he&rsquod been in conflict for years. The former Defense Department official told me that the White House provided a different explanation to members of the civilian leadership of the Pentagon: the bombing had been called off because there was intelligence &lsquothat the Middle East would go up in smoke&rsquo if it was carried out.

The president&rsquos decision to go to Congress was initially seen by senior aides in the White House, the former intelligence official said, as a replay of George W. Bush&rsquos gambit in the autumn of 2002 before the invasion of Iraq: &lsquoWhen it became clear that there were no WMD in Iraq, Congress, which had endorsed the Iraqi war, and the White House both shared the blame and repeatedly cited faulty intelligence. If the current Congress were to vote to endorse the strike, the White House could again have it both ways &ndash wallop Syria with a massive attack and validate the president&rsquos red line commitment, while also being able to share the blame with Congress if it came out that the Syrian military wasn&rsquot behind the attack.&rsquo The turnabout came as a surprise even to the Democratic leadership in Congress. In September the Wall Street Journal reported that three days before his Rose Garden speech Obama had telephoned Nancy Pelosi, leader of the House Democrats, &lsquoto talk through the options&rsquo. She later told colleagues, according to the Journal, that she hadn&rsquot asked the president to put the bombing to a congressional vote.

Obama&rsquos move for congressional approval quickly became a dead end. &lsquoCongress was not going to let this go by,&rsquo the former intelligence official said. &lsquoCongress made it known that, unlike the authorisation for the Iraq war, there would be substantive hearings.&rsquo At this point, there was a sense of desperation in the White House, the former intelligence official said. &lsquoAnd so out comes Plan B. Call off the bombing strike and Assad would agree to unilaterally sign the chemical warfare treaty and agree to the destruction of all of chemical weapons under UN supervision.&rsquo At a press conference in London on 9 September, Kerry was still talking about intervention: &lsquoThe risk of not acting is greater than the risk of acting.&rsquo But when a reporter asked if there was anything Assad could do to stop the bombing, Kerry said: &lsquoSure. He could turn over every single bit of his chemical weapons to the international community in the next week &hellip But he isn&rsquot about to do it, and it can&rsquot be done, obviously.&rsquo As the New York Times reported the next day, the Russian-brokered deal that emerged shortly afterwards had first been discussed by Obama and Putin in the summer of 2012. Although the strike plans were shelved, the administration didn&rsquot change its public assessment of the justification for going to war. &lsquoThere is zero tolerance at that level for the existence of error,&rsquo the former intelligence official said of the senior officials in the White House. &lsquoThey could not afford to say: &ldquoWe were wrong.&rdquo&rsquo (The DNI spokesperson said: &lsquoThe Assad regime, and only the Assad regime, could have been responsible for the chemical weapons attack that took place on 21 August.&rsquo)

T he full ​ extent of US co-operation with Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Qatar in assisting the rebel opposition in Syria has yet to come to light. The Obama administration has never publicly admitted to its role in creating what the CIA calls a &lsquorat line&rsquo, a back channel highway into Syria. The rat line, authorised in early 2012, was used to funnel weapons and ammunition from Libya via southern Turkey and across the Syrian border to the opposition. Many of those in Syria who ultimately received the weapons were jihadists, some of them affiliated with al-Qaida. (The DNI spokesperson said: &lsquoThe idea that the United States was providing weapons from Libya to anyone is false.&rsquo)

In January, the Senate Intelligence Committee released a report on the assault by a local militia in September 2012 on the American consulate and a nearby undercover CIA facility in Benghazi, which resulted in the death of the US ambassador, Christopher Stevens, and three others. The report&rsquos criticism of the State Department for not providing adequate security at the consulate, and of the intelligence community for not alerting the US military to the presence of a CIA outpost in the area, received front-page coverage and revived animosities in Washington, with Republicans accusing Obama and Hillary Clinton of a cover-up. A highly classified annex to the report, not made public, described a secret agreement reached in early 2012 between the Obama and Erdoğan administrations. It pertained to the rat line. By the terms of the agreement, funding came from Turkey, as well as Saudi Arabia and Qatar the CIA, with the support of MI6, was responsible for getting arms from Gaddafi&rsquos arsenals into Syria. A number of front companies were set up in Libya, some under the cover of Australian entities. Retired American soldiers, who didn&rsquot always know who was really employing them, were hired to manage procurement and shipping. The operation was run by David Petraeus, the CIA director who would soon resign when it became known he was having an affair with his biographer. (A spokesperson for Petraeus denied the operation ever took place.)

The operation had not been disclosed at the time it was set up to the congressional intelligence committees and the congressional leadership, as required by law since the 1970s. The involvement of MI6 enabled the CIA to evade the law by classifying the mission as a liaison operation. The former intelligence official explained that for years there has been a recognised exception in the law that permits the CIA not to report liaison activity to Congress, which would otherwise be owed a finding. (All proposed CIA covert operations must be described in a written document, known as a &lsquofinding&rsquo, submitted to the senior leadership of Congress for approval.) Distribution of the annex was limited to the staff aides who wrote the report and to the eight ranking members of Congress &ndash the Democratic and Republican leaders of the House and Senate, and the Democratic and Republicans leaders on the House and Senate intelligence committees. This hardly constituted a genuine attempt at oversight: the eight leaders are not known to gather together to raise questions or discuss the secret information they receive.

The annex didn&rsquot tell the whole story of what happened in Benghazi before the attack, nor did it explain why the American consulate was attacked. &lsquoThe consulate&rsquos only mission was to provide cover for the moving of arms,&rsquo the former intelligence official, who has read the annex, said. &lsquoIt had no real political role.&rsquo

Washington abruptly ended the CIA&rsquos role in the transfer of arms from Libya after the attack on the consulate, but the rat line kept going. &lsquoThe United States was no longer in control of what the Turks were relaying to the jihadists,&rsquo the former intelligence official said. Within weeks, as many as forty portable surface-to-air missile launchers, commonly known as manpads, were in the hands of Syrian rebels. On 28 November 2012, Joby Warrick of the Washington Post reported that the previous day rebels near Aleppo had used what was almost certainly a manpad to shoot down a Syrian transport helicopter. &lsquoThe Obama administration,&rsquo Warrick wrote, &lsquohas steadfastly opposed arming Syrian opposition forces with such missiles, warning that the weapons could fall into the hands of terrorists and be used to shoot down commercial aircraft.&rsquo Two Middle Eastern intelligence officials fingered Qatar as the source, and a former US intelligence analyst speculated that the manpads could have been obtained from Syrian military outposts overrun by the rebels. There was no indication that the rebels&rsquo possession of manpads was likely the unintended consequence of a covert US programme that was no longer under US control.

By the end of 2012, it was believed throughout the American intelligence community that the rebels were losing the war. &lsquoErdoğan was pissed,&rsquo the former intelligence official said, &lsquoand felt he was left hanging on the vine. It was his money and the cut-off was seen as a betrayal.&rsquo In spring 2013 US intelligence learned that the Turkish government &ndash through elements of the MIT, its national intelligence agency, and the Gendarmerie, a militarised law-enforcement organisation &ndash was working directly with al-Nusra and its allies to develop a chemical warfare capability. &lsquoThe MIT was running the political liaison with the rebels, and the Gendarmerie handled military logistics, on-the-scene advice and training &ndash including training in chemical warfare,&rsquo the former intelligence official said. &lsquoStepping up Turkey&rsquos role in spring 2013 was seen as the key to its problems there. Erdoğan knew that if he stopped his support of the jihadists it would be all over. The Saudis could not support the war because of logistics &ndash the distances involved and the difficulty of moving weapons and supplies. Erdoğan&rsquos hope was to instigate an event that would force the US to cross the red line. But Obama didn&rsquot respond in March and April.&rsquo

There was no public sign of discord when Erdoğan and Obama met on 16 May 2013 at the White House. At a later press conference Obama said that they had agreed that Assad &lsquoneeds to go&rsquo. Asked whether he thought Syria had crossed the red line, Obama acknowledged that there was evidence such weapons had been used, but added, &lsquoit is important for us to make sure that we&rsquore able to get more specific information about what exactly is happening there.&rsquo The red line was still intact.

An American foreign policy expert who speaks regularly with officials in Washington and Ankara told me about a working dinner Obama held for Erdoğan during his May visit. The meal was dominated by the Turks&rsquo insistence that Syria had crossed the red line and their complaints that Obama was reluctant to do anything about it. Obama was accompanied by John Kerry and Tom Donilon, the national security adviser who would soon leave the job. Erdoğan was joined by Ahmet Davutoğlu, Turkey&rsquos foreign minister, and Hakan Fidan, the head of the MIT. Fidan is known to be fiercely loyal to Erdoğan, and has been seen as a consistent backer of the radical rebel opposition in Syria.

The foreign policy expert told me that the account he heard originated with Donilon. (It was later corroborated by a former US official, who learned of it from a senior Turkish diplomat.) According to the expert, Erdoğan had sought the meeting to demonstrate to Obama that the red line had been crossed, and had brought Fidan along to state the case. When Erdoğan tried to draw Fidan into the conversation, and Fidan began speaking, Obama cut him off and said: &lsquoWe know.&rsquo Erdoğan tried to bring Fidan in a second time, and Obama again cut him off and said: &lsquoWe know.&rsquo At that point, an exasperated Erdoğan said, &lsquoBut your red line has been crossed!&rsquo and, the expert told me, &lsquoDonilon said Erdoğan &ldquofucking waved his finger at the president inside the White House&rdquo.&rsquo Obama then pointed at Fidan and said: &lsquoWe know what you&rsquore doing with the radicals in Syria.&rsquo (Donilon, who joined the Council on Foreign Relations last July, didn&rsquot respond to questions about this story. The Turkish Foreign Ministry didn&rsquot respond to questions about the dinner. A spokesperson for the National Security Council confirmed that the dinner took place and provided a photograph showing Obama, Kerry, Donilon, Erdoğan, Fidan and Davutoğlu sitting at a table. &lsquoBeyond that,&rsquo she said, &lsquoI&rsquom not going to read out the details of their discussions.&rsquo)

But Erdoğan did not leave empty handed. Obama was still permitting Turkey to continue to exploit a loophole in a presidential executive order prohibiting the export of gold to Iran, part of the US sanctions regime against the country. In March 2012, responding to sanctions of Iranian banks by the EU, the SWIFT electronic payment system, which facilitates cross-border payments, expelled dozens of Iranian financial institutions, severely restricting the country&rsquos ability to conduct international trade. The US followed with the executive order in July, but left what came to be known as a &lsquogolden loophole&rsquo: gold shipments to private Iranian entities could continue. Turkey is a major purchaser of Iranian oil and gas, and it took advantage of the loophole by depositing its energy payments in Turkish lira in an Iranian account in Turkey these funds were then used to purchase Turkish gold for export to confederates in Iran. Gold to the value of $13 billion reportedly entered Iran in this way between March 2012 and July 2013.

The programme quickly became a cash cow for corrupt politicians and traders in Turkey, Iran and the United Arab Emirates. &lsquoThe middlemen did what they always do,&rsquo the former intelligence official said. &lsquoTake 15 per cent. The CIA had estimated that there was as much as two billion dollars in skim. Gold and Turkish lira were sticking to fingers.&rsquo The illicit skimming flared into a public &lsquogas for gold&rsquo scandal in Turkey in December, and resulted in charges against two dozen people, including prominent businessmen and relatives of government officials, as well as the resignations of three ministers, one of whom called for Erdoğan to resign. The chief executive of a Turkish state-controlled bank that was in the middle of the scandal insisted that more than $4.5 million in cash found by police in shoeboxes during a search of his home was for charitable donations.

Late last year Jonathan Schanzer and Mark Dubowitz reported in Foreign Policy that the Obama administration closed the golden loophole in January 2013, but &lsquolobbied to make sure the legislation &hellip did not take effect for six months&rsquo. They speculated that the administration wanted to use the delay as an incentive to bring Iran to the bargaining table over its nuclear programme, or to placate its Turkish ally in the Syrian civil war. The delay permitted Iran to &lsquoaccrue billions of dollars more in gold, further undermining the sanctions regime&rsquo.

T he American decision ​ to end CIA support of the weapons shipments into Syria left Erdoğan exposed politically and militarily. &lsquoOne of the issues at that May summit was the fact that Turkey is the only avenue to supply the rebels in Syria,&rsquo the former intelligence official said. &lsquoIt can&rsquot come through Jordan because the terrain in the south is wide open and the Syrians are all over it. And it can&rsquot come through the valleys and hills of Lebanon &ndash you can&rsquot be sure who you&rsquod meet on the other side.&rsquo Without US military support for the rebels, the former intelligence official said, &lsquoErdoğan&rsquos dream of having a client state in Syria is evaporating and he thinks we&rsquore the reason why. When Syria wins the war, he knows the rebels are just as likely to turn on him &ndash where else can they go? So now he will have thousands of radicals in his backyard.&rsquo

A US intelligence consultant told me that a few weeks before 21 August he saw a highly classified briefing prepared for Dempsey and the defense secretary, Chuck Hagel, which described &lsquothe acute anxiety&rsquo of the Erdoğan administration about the rebels&rsquo dwindling prospects. The analysis warned that the Turkish leadership had expressed &lsquothe need to do something that would precipitate a US military response&rsquo. By late summer, the Syrian army still had the advantage over the rebels, the former intelligence official said, and only American air power could turn the tide. In the autumn, the former intelligence official went on, the US intelligence analysts who kept working on the events of 21 August &lsquosensed that Syria had not done the gas attack. But the 500 pound gorilla was, how did it happen? The immediate suspect was the Turks, because they had all the pieces to make it happen.&rsquo

As intercepts and other data related to the 21 August attacks were gathered, the intelligence community saw evidence to support its suspicions. &lsquoWe now know it was a covert action planned by Erdoğan&rsquos people to push Obama over the red line,&rsquo the former intelligence official said. &lsquoThey had to escalate to a gas attack in or near Damascus when the UN inspectors&rsquo &ndash who arrived in Damascus on 18 August to investigate the earlier use of gas &ndash &lsquowere there. The deal was to do something spectacular. Our senior military officers have been told by the DIA and other intelligence assets that the sarin was supplied through Turkey &ndash that it could only have gotten there with Turkish support. The Turks also provided the training in producing the sarin and handling it.&rsquo Much of the support for that assessment came from the Turks themselves, via intercepted conversations in the immediate aftermath of the attack. &lsquoPrincipal evidence came from the Turkish post-attack joy and back-slapping in numerous intercepts. Operations are always so super-secret in the planning but that all flies out the window when it comes to crowing afterwards. There is no greater vulnerability than in the perpetrators claiming credit for success.&rsquo Erdoğan&rsquos problems in Syria would soon be over: &lsquoOff goes the gas and Obama will say red line and America is going to attack Syria, or at least that was the idea. But it did not work out that way.&rsquo

The post-attack intelligence on Turkey did not make its way to the White House. &lsquoNobody wants to talk about all this,&rsquo the former intelligence official told me. &lsquoThere is great reluctance to contradict the president, although no all-source intelligence community analysis supported his leap to convict. There has not been one single piece of additional evidence of Syrian involvement in the sarin attack produced by the White House since the bombing raid was called off. My government can&rsquot say anything because we have acted so irresponsibly. And since we blamed Assad, we can&rsquot go back and blame Erdoğan.&rsquo

Turkey&rsquos willingness to manipulate events in Syria to its own purposes seemed to be demonstrated late last month, a few days before a round of local elections, when a recording, allegedly of a government national security meeting, was posted to YouTube. It included discussion of a false-flag operation that would justify an incursion by the Turkish military in Syria. The operation centred on the tomb of Suleyman Shah, the grandfather of the revered Osman I, founder of the Ottoman Empire, which is near Aleppo and was ceded to Turkey in 1921, when Syria was under French rule. One of the Islamist rebel factions was threatening to destroy the tomb as a site of idolatry, and the Erdoğan administration was publicly threatening retaliation if harm came to it. According to a Reuters report of the leaked conversation, a voice alleged to be Fidan&rsquos spoke of creating a provocation: &lsquoNow look, my commander, if there is to be justification, the justification is I send four men to the other side. I get them to fire eight missiles into empty land [in the vicinity of the tomb]. That&rsquos not a problem. Justification can be created.&rsquo The Turkish government acknowledged that there had been a national security meeting about threats emanating from Syria, but said the recording had been manipulated. The government subsequently blocked public access to YouTube.

Barring a major change in policy by Obama, Turkey&rsquos meddling in the Syrian civil war is likely to go on. &lsquoI asked my colleagues if there was any way to stop Erdoğan&rsquos continued support for the rebels, especially now that it&rsquos going so wrong,&rsquo the former intelligence official told me. &lsquoThe answer was: &ldquoWe&rsquore screwed.&rdquo We could go public if it was somebody other than Erdoğan, but Turkey is a special case. They&rsquore a Nato ally. The Turks don&rsquot trust the West. They can&rsquot live with us if we take any active role against Turkish interests. If we went public with what we know about Erdoğan&rsquos role with the gas, it&rsquod be disastrous. The Turks would say: &ldquoWe hate you for telling us what we can and can&rsquot do.&rdquo&rsquo

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Online submission: Articles for publication in International Journal of Military History and Historiography can be submitted online through Editorial Manager, please click here.

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Associate and Reviews Editor
Prof. Dr Winfried Heinemann, Center of Military History and Social Sciences – ZMSBw (Germany)
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Associate Editor for North America
Dr Harold E. Raugh, Jr., Command Historian, U.S. Army Europe

Associate Editor for Southern Africa
Prof. Dr André Wessels, Senior Professor, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa

Advisory Board
Prof. Karen Hagemann, University of North Carolina
Prof. Nicola Labanca, Università degli Studi di Siena
Prof. Antonio Marquina Barrio, Universidad Complutense de Madrid
Prof. Sönke Neitzel, Universität Potsdam
Prof. Georges-Henri Soutou, Paris-Sorbonne/Institut de France
Prof. Hew Strachan, University of St Andrews
Prof. Geoffrey Wawro, University of North Texas

Bibliographical Committee of the International Commission of Military History
President: Dr Marco Wyss (see above)
Secretary General: Prof. Dr Winfried Heinemann (see above)

Brg. (Res) Dr Daniel Asher, IDF CSC (Israel)
Prof. Dr Jordan Baev, Defense Advanced Research Institute, G.S. Rakovski National Defense Academy, Sofia (Bulgaria)
Dr Gabriele Bosch, ZMSBw - Bibliothek (Germany)
Prof. Dr Lars Erikson-Wolke, Military History Department, National Defence University, Stockholm (Sweden)
Dr Zisis Fotakis, Lecturer, Hellenic Naval Academy, (Greece)
Prof. Dr Winfried Heinemann (see above)
Dr Andreas Karyos, National Struggle Museum and University of Nicosia (Cyprus)
Coronel Ejercito de Tierra (r), DEM Fernando Fontana de Grassa, Centro Superior de Estudios de la Defensa Nacional, Madrid (Spain)
Col. M.A. José Miguel Moreira Freire, Director of Military Academy Library, Lisbon (Portugal)
Prof. Dr Gianluca Pastori, Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Milano (Italy)
Dr Anselm van der Peet, Netherlands Institute of Military History (The Netherlands)
Prof. Dr Dumitru Preda, Directeur de la direction des Archives Diplomatiques, Ministère des Afffaires étrangères (Romania)
Dr Claudia Reichl-Ham, Research and Publications Department, Austrian Army Museum (Austria)
Dr Robyn L. Rodriguez, Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii (USA)
Dr Max Schiavon, Commission Française d’Histoire Militaire (France)
Prof. Dr Pasi Tuunainen, Senior Lecturer and Adjunct Professor in Military History, University of Eastern Finland, Joensuu (Finland)
Sr. Col. Zhou Xiaoning, Academy of Military Science, Chinese PLA, Beijing (China).

Honorary Presidents:
Col. Daniel Reichel (†) (Founding Member) (Switzerland)
Brig. Jean Langenberger (†) (Switzerland)
Maj. Dr. Dimitry Queloz (Switzerland)

Honorary Member:
Gso. Ma. Jarl E. Kronlund (Finland)

Founding Members:
Mrs. Marie-Annick Hepp (France)
Gen. P. A. Jiline (†) (Russia)
Col. J. Pariseau (†) (Canada)
Col. D. M. Pedrazzini (Switzerland)
Hofrat Dr Manfried Rauchensteiner (Austria)
Prof. Dr Jürgen Rohwer (†) (Germany)
Capt. C. G. Strandman (Sweden)

Dr James Hogue, University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Dr Ann Schreiner

Military History Commander: Europe at War

'A serious World War II grand strategy game on the DS' is right up there with 'Peace in the Middle-East', 'Duke Nukem Forever' and 'A badger at the helm of a Premier League football club' in my Things I Didn't Expect To See In My Lifetime list. The PC is awash with them (serious WW2 grand strategy games, not badger managers) but none have made the scary leap to handheld. None until now.

Trail-blazing Commander: Europe at War is grand strategy not because its panzers have walnut dashboards or its generals swan around in mink pants (though with Goering, who can tell), but because its units represent entire army divisions, fleets, and airforce groups, and its one seamless map encompasses a whole continent. It's serious because it digs deep into the history, and works hard to deliver plausible scenarios and outcomes.

The premise of the game is as simple as the premise of the conflict it seeks to simulate. You either take the role of the goose-stepping fascists and endeavour to enslave Europe, or play as the Allies and struggle to 'free' it (obviously Stalin's version of freedom came with provisos). The first of a string of mild disappointments is the realisation that there's no option to fight the war as an individual nation. Want to be the pudgy-faced cigar-sucking Winston Churchill? Hard Cheddar, you have to be the pudgy-faced cigar-sucking moustache-stroking walking-stick-wielding composite of all three Allied premiers.

Play is chunked into month-long turns and unit movement is prescribed by that staple of wargame and beehive, the hex-grid. A few succinct text pop-ups help you through your first few turns, introducing mechanics you'll know by heart inside an hour. By genre standards this is a sleek and straightforward wargame. There's no elaborate turn phases, no fiddly unit stacking or baffling combined attack rules. To assault you simply move a unit into a hex adjacent to an enemy, tap to target, study the battle odds, then tap to confirm. The little time spent away from the map is spent on the research and unit purchasing screens. Cities generate industrial production points which can be frittered away on twelve different force types (assuming you've got enough manpower) or labs in six different fields. R&D isn't as colourful or deep as it is in rivals like Hearts of Iron, but it is a nice foil to all the military manoeuvring.

Unit and map art is clear and attractive, though sometimes it's hard to tell whether coastal hexes are land or sea.

Sadly, what you don't get to indulge in is diplomacy. CEAW inherits from its PC incarnation rigid geopolitical scripts that after a few days' play can start to grate. Countries like the USSR, Italy and America are programmed to enter the war at roughly historical dates. There's a dash of randomness, but you never get to see what would happen if, say, the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact had held or Franco had thrown his lot in with the Axis. Minor countries such as Turkey and Sweden are there to be invaded, not schmoozed or bullied. The thinking behind this approach has merit: the more chance you give the player to mess with the history the less believable endgames are likely to be. Personally though, I would have appreciated a bit more freedom.

Especially with the AI as it is. Whether you're playing as Axis or Allies, you're guaranteed a good tough war. Robot Rommel blitzes into the Low Countries and France like he's got a Channel ferry to catch, and ersatz Eisenhower will storm into Fortress Europe at the drop of a hat if he thinks he's got a chance of gaining a foothold. The problem is the AI never seems to vary its strategies or consider clever circuitous routes to its goals. The southern half of the map - the Med - and the Northern portion - Scandinavia - rarely if ever seem to figure prominently in its plans.

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Who is Aung San Suu Kyi?

Aung San Suu Kyi, the daughter of independence hero General Aung San, rose to prominence during the 1988 protests. After the crackdown, she and others formed the NLD opposition party. She was detained in 1989 and spent more than fifteen years in prison and under house arrest until her release in 2010. In 1991, Suu Kyi was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize while still under house arrest.

Suu Kyi became Myanmar’s de facto leader in 2015. (The constitution prevents her from assuming the title of president.) She continues to enjoy widespread domestic support, but CFR’s Joshua Kurlantzick says she has little to show for her time in power, as she tried to pacify the military by defending its abuses against the Rohingya and by restricting press freedoms. “She failed to strengthen democracy in recent years and create democratic bulwarks,” Kurlantzick writes.

Escaping Assimilation's Grasp: Aboriginal women in the Australian women's military services

During the assimilation era of the 1930s–60s, most Australian Indigenous women living in proximity to white Australia were forced to work as domestic servants with few other education or employment prospects. One significant yet under-studied exception was employment in the armed services' women's auxiliaries. As a consequence of such employment, Aboriginal ex-servicewomen learned new skills and new opportunities to improve their social statuses. Through analysis of oral histories from four Aboriginal ex-servicewomen who served in the 1940s–60s, this article examines how work in the women's forces empowered Aboriginal women and represented an escape from assimilation policies.


This work was supported by Australian Research Council Discovery grant DP110101627. The author gratefully acknowledges the assistance of Shurlee Swain, Nell Musgrove, Maggie Nolan and Naomi Wolfe in preparing this article. He also thanks the three women interviewed for their time and sharing their life stories. They all reviewed the final draft of this article before publication.

Immortal: A Military History of Iran and its Armed Forces

Iran has had more than its share of wars its history can, to a large extent, be understood by studying the military operations on its soil. With only brief interludes, Iranian leaders during the last century have seen the military as the centerpiece of their rule. That was as true of Reza Shah Pahlavi (r. 1921-41) and his son as of the Islamic Republic, which uses its Pasdaran, or Revolutionary Guard, to maintain its iron grip on the country.

CIA analyst Ward provides detailed accounts of the grand martial dreams envisaged by these regimes—dreams that came crashing down in costly failure. When Iraqi forces unilaterally withdrew from Iranian soil in 1982, for example, the Islamic Republic could have ended the war with Iraq on terms no worse—arguably better—than what it was offered in 1988. By fighting on, the Islamic Republic lost about 200,000 citizens and exhausted its people, who no longer were prepared to sacrifice for the revolutionary cause.

Ward skillfully illustrates how the Islamic Republic in many important ways continues the millennia-long trends of its forebears. He recalls historian Sir Percy Sykes's comment that the ancient Sassanians, the last pre-Islamic Persian empire, "consider[ed] the altar and throne as inseparable," pointing to its continuing relevance to many Iranian regimes, especially today's mullocracy. Another theme is the eventual intervention of the military in political affairs, seen once more in the Revolutionary Guard's assertion of greater control at the expense of clerics and elected leaders.

Finally, he observes that few Iranian regimes have done well in incorporating state-of-the-art technology in an effective manner, noting the dangers for the Islamic Republic in its reliance on a small inventory of uncertain missiles and weapons of mass destruction, which among other things, invite preemptive attack. Most striking is the same pattern displayed in the 1980-88 war with Iraq: Dedicated, self-sacrificing Iranian soldiers undercut by poor leadership, stingy support, and outright maltreatment at the hands of rulers who took a cavalier attitude toward their soldiers' sacrifices. It would behoove today's military planners to absorb these important lessons from the past as they prepare for current contingencies.

If the lessons of the past hold, the ordinary Iranian soldier will perform valiantly and the Iranian commanders will be not especially competent or caring about their men.

Related Topics: History, Iran | Patrick Clawson | Fall 2010 MEQ receive the latest by email: subscribe to the free mef mailing list This text may be reposted or forwarded so long as it is presented as an integral whole with complete and accurate information provided about its author, date, place of publication, and original URL.

M1 Garand

An M1 Garand rifle with a M1917 leather sling. photo from

During World War II, the semi-automatic M1 Garand began to replace the Springfield 󈧇, representing a permanent shift for the U.S. military toward semi-auto gas-operated rifles. In fact, it was the first semi-auto rifle every issued by any military.

As the 󈧇 was the definitive American rifle during WWI, the Garand was such for the Second World War, seeing heavy action and gaining a reputation as a rugged, and reliable rifle, even if it was a little heavy.

The only wide criticism of the rifle was the fact that it had an internal magazine that was loaded by an en-bloc, a metal clip that holds 8 rounds, instead of a detachable box magazine. The clip ejected with the last round, making a distinctive ping sound, which some speculated the enemy could hear and use as an indicator of when to attack, though this is unlikely. Another down-side the Garand shared with almost every rifle of the time was that its wood stock tended swell and warp in humid and wet climates, affecting the rifle’s accuracy.

The Garand was fielded by U.S. troops through the Korean war, until the M14 came along.

A sniper loading his M1C Garand in Korea. You can see the model has an offset M84 scope to allow the en-bloc clip to be loaded from the top. photo from web photo

American Latino Theme Study

This essay explores the history of Latino immigration to the U.S. with particular emphasis on issues of citizenship and non-citizenship, political controversies over immigration policy, and the global economic context in which regional migration and immigration have occurred.

An Historic Overview of Latino Immigration and the Demographic Transformation of the United States
David G. Gutiérrez

Immigration from Latin America&mdashand the attendant growth of the nation's Hispanic or Latino population&mdashare two of the most important and controversial developments in the recent history of the United States. Expanding from a small, regionally concentrated population of fewer than 6 million in 1960 (just 3.24 percent of the U.S. population at the time), to a now widely dispersed population of well more than 50 million (or 16 percent of the nation's population), Latinos are destined to continue to exert enormous impact on social, cultural, political, and economic life of the U.S. [1]Although space limitations make it impossible to provide a comprehensive account of this complex history, this essay is intended to provide an overview of the history of Latino immigration to the U.S. with particular emphasis on issues of citizenship and non-citizenship, the long running political controversies over immigration policy, and the global economic context in which regional migration and immigration have occurred. The essay suggests that the explosive growth of the nation's pan-Latino population is the result of the intricate interplay of national, regional, and global economic developments, the history of U.S. military and foreign policy in the Western Hemisphere, the checkered history of international border enforcement and interdiction efforts, and, not least, the aspirations of Latin American migrants and potential migrants themselves.

Foundational Population Movements: Mexico

The history of Latino migration to the U.S. has complex origins rooted in the nation's territorial and economic expansion. Technically, the first significant influx of Latino immigrants to the U.S. occurred during the California Gold Rush, or just after most of the modern boundary between the U.S. and Mexico was established at the end of the U.S.-Mexican War (1846-48). Under the terms of the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo (signed outside of Mexico City in February 1848), the Republic of Mexico ceded to the U.S. more than one-third of its former territory, including what are now the states of California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado, Texas, and parts of several other states. In addition, the treaty also offered blanket naturalization to the estimated 75,000 to 100,000 former citizens of Mexico who chose to remain north of the new border at the end of the war.[2]

With exception of the approximately 10,000 Mexican miners who entered California during the Gold Rush, migration from Mexico was very light during most of the 19th century, averaging no more than 3,000 to 5,000 persons per decade in the period between 1840 and 1890.[3] This changed dramatically at the beginning of next century. As the pace of economic development in the American West accelerated after the expansion of the regional rail system in the 1870s and 1880s, and as the supply of labor from Asian nations was dramatically reduced by a series of increasingly restrictive immigration laws beginning in 1882, U.S. employers began to look to Mexico to fill a dramatically rising demand for labor in basic industries including agriculture, mining, construction, and transportation (especially railroad construction and maintenance). Drawn to the border region by the simultaneous economic development of northern Mexico and the southwestern U.S. (largely facilitated by the eventual linkage of the American and Mexican rail systems at key points along the U.S.-Mexico border), at least 100,000 Mexicans had migrated to the U.S. by 1900. The outbreak of the Mexican Revolution in 1910 greatly intensified the movement of people within Mexico and eventually across the border, a trend that continued for the first three decades of the 20th century.

Historical migration statistics for this period are notoriously inaccurate because of inconsistent enumeration techniques, changing methods of ethnic and racial classification in the U.S., and the fairly constant movement of uncounted thousands of undocumented migrants into and out of U.S. territory. Extrapolation from both U.S. and Mexican census sources, however, provides a sense of the magnitude of population movement over this period. In 1900, the number of Mexican nationals living in the U.S. reached 100,000 for the first time and continued to rise dramatically thereafter, doubling to at least 220,000 in 1910, and then doubling again to 478,000 by 1920. In 1930, at the beginning of the Great Depression, the number of resident Mexican nationals is conservatively estimated to have increased to at least 639,000. When combined with the original Mexican American population (that is, the descendants of the former citizens of Mexico who lived in the Southwest at the end of the U.S.-Mexican War), the total Mexican-origin or heritage population of the U.S. in 1930 was probably at least 1.5 million, with the largest concentrations in the states of Texas, California, and Arizona, and a smaller yet significant number working in industrial jobs in the Midwest, especially in the metropolitan areas of Chicago, Detroit, and Gary, Indiana.[4]

Despite a brief reversal of migration flows during the Great Depression, when an estimated 350,000 to 500,000 Mexican immigrants and their children were pressured or compelled to leave the country in a mass repatriation campaign coordinated by local, state, and federal officials, Mexican migration trends seen earlier in the century quickly resumed after the U.S. entered the Second World War in 1941.[5]Facing a significant farm labor shortage as a result of conscription and war mobilization, U.S. employer lobbies convinced the Federal Government to approach Mexico about the possibility of implementing an emergency bilateral labor agreement. Still stinging from the humiliation suffered by Mexican nationals and their children during the repatriation campaigns of the previous decade, Mexican government officials were at first reluctant to enter into such an agreement, but after securing guarantees from U.S. officials that contract workers would be provided transportation to and from Mexico, a fair wage, decent food and housing, and basic human rights protections, the two governments signed the Emergency Farm Labor Agreement in the summer of 1942.[6]

Soon dubbed the Bracero Program (from the Spanish colloquial word for manual laborer) this new guest worker program had a number of important long-term effects. On the most fundamental level, the program not only reopened the southern border to Mexican labor, but also more significantly, reinstituted the use of large numbers of immigrant workers in the U.S. economy for the first time since the Depression. The scale of the program remained fairly modest through the war years, with an average of about 70,000 contract laborers working in the country each year during the war. Over time, however, the Bracero Program, which was extended by various means after the war, had the effect of priming the pump for the much more extensive use of such workers. By 1949, the number of imported contract workers had jumped to 113,000, and then averaged more than 200,000 per year between 1950 and 1954. During the peak years of the program between 1955 and 1960, an average of more than 400,000 laborers (predominantly from Mexico, but augmented by smaller numbers of Jamaicans, Bahamians, Barbadians, and Hondurans as well) were employed in the U.S. By the time the program was finally terminated in 1964, nearly 5 million contracts had been issued.[7]

The guest worker program instituted in the early 1940s also had the largely unanticipated effect of increasing both sanctioned and unsanctioned migration to the U.S. from Mexico. By reinforcing communication networks between contract workers and their friends and families in their places of origin in Mexico, increasing numbers of Mexicans were able to gain reliable knowledge about labor market conditions, employment opportunities, and migration routes north of the border. Consequently, the number of Mexicans who legally immigrated to the U.S. increased steadily in the 1950s and 1960s, rising from just 60,000 in the decade of the 1940s to 219,000 in the 1950s and 459,000 in the 1960s.[8]

More importantly over the long run, the Bracero Program helped to stimulate a sharp increase in unauthorized Mexican migration. Drawn to the prospect of improving their material conditions in the U.S. (where wages were anywhere from seven to ten times higher than those paid in Mexico), tens of thousands of Mexicans (almost all of them males of working age) chose to circumvent the formal labor contract process and instead crossed the border surreptitiously. This was seen in the sudden increase in the apprehension of unauthorized immigrants, which rose from a negligible number in 1940, to more than 91,000 in 1946, nearly 200,000 in 1947, and to more than 500,000 by 1951.[9]

The increasing circulation of unauthorized workers in this era suited employers, who sought to avoid the red tape and higher costs associated with participation in the formal labor importation program, and would-be Mexican braceros who were unable to secure contracts through official means. Indeed, the mutual economic incentives for unsanctioned entry (bolstered by ever more sophisticated and economically lucrative smuggling, communication, and document-forging networks) increased so much in this period that it is estimated that at different times, the ratio of unauthorized workers to legally contracted braceros was at least two-to-one, and in some cases, was even higher in specific local labor markets. That the use of unauthorized labor had become a systemic feature of the U.S. economy is further reflected in that fact that over the 24 years of the Bracero Program, the estimated number of unauthorized persons apprehended&mdashnearly 5 million&mdashwas roughly equivalent to the total number of official contracts issued. [10]

Although the U.S. government has never achieved an accurate count of the number of unauthorized Mexican migrants circulating or settling in the U.S. at any one time, population movement of this magnitude inevitably contributed to a steady increase in the permanent resident ethnic Mexican population. According to U.S. Census data (which again, significantly undercounted undocumented residents in each census) and recent demographic analyses, the total ethnic Mexican population of both nationalities in the U.S. grew from about 1.6 million 1940, to 2.5 million in 1950, and reached 4 million by 1960.[11]The historical significance of the Bracero Program as a precursor to neoliberal economic practices and a driver of demographic change has recently been recognized in a number of public history projects, including the Smithsonian's ongoing Bracero Archive project and the "Bittersweet Harvest" traveling exhibition.[12]

The growth of the Puerto Rican population in the continental U.S. has even more complicated origins. Almost exactly a half-century after the end of the Mexican War, the island of Puerto Rico became an "unincorporated territory" of the U.S. after Spain ceded the island and other colonial possessions at the end of the Spanish-American War of 1898. In the first years of American rule, Puerto Ricans were governed under the terms of the Foraker Act of 1900, which established the island as unincorporated possession of the U.S. and provided a civil government consisting of a Governor appointed by the U.S. President, an Executive Council comprised of 6 Americans and 5 Puerto Ricans, and an integrated court system. In 1917, the U.S. Congress, responding to an increasingly aggressive Puerto Rican independence movement, passed the Jones Act. The Jones Act sought to quell local unrest by providing a number of political reforms including a bicameral legislature (although still under the ultimate authority of a U.S.-appointed Governor, the U.S. Congress, and President of the U.S.), and a Puerto Rican Bill of Rights. More importantly, the Jones Act granted U.S. citizenship to all Puerto Ricans except those who made a public choice to renounce this option, a momentous decision made by nearly 300 Puerto Ricans at the time.[13]

Although the authors of the Jones Act had not anticipated that their actions would open the door to Puerto Rican migration to the continental U.S., the extension of U.S. citizenship to island residents ended up having just this effect. Indeed, one of the lasting ironies of the U.S. government's action in 1917 was that even though congressional leaders had expected to continue to control Puerto Rico as a remote colonial possession, a Supreme Court ruling soon revealed the Pandora's Box Congress had opened by granting U.S. citizenship to the island's inhabitants. In the case Balzac v. Porto Rico (1922), the Court held that although Puerto Ricans on the island did not have the same constitutional standing as "ordinary" U.S. citizens (based on the logic that the Constitution's plenary power granted Congress almost unlimited authority to decide which specific rights people in unincorporated territory could enjoy), it also ruled that the conferral of citizenship allowed Puerto Ricans the unfettered right to migrate anywhere within U.S. jurisdiction. More importantly, the Court ruled further that once there, Puerto Ricans were by law "to enjoy every right of any other citizen of the U.S., civic, social, and political."[14]

Puerto Ricans soon took advantage of this oversight by exercising one of the most basic rights of U.S. citizenship&mdashthat of free movement within the territorial boundaries of the U.S. and its possessions. Beginning soon after the Balzac ruling, but increasingly after the Great Depression, growing numbers of Puerto Ricans began moving to the continent, and especially to New York City. Migration from the island was spurred by an evolving colonial economy that simply did not provide sufficient employment to keep up with population growth. Prior to the 1930s, the Puerto Rican economy was heavily oriented toward sugar production, which required intensive labor for only half the year and idled cane workers for the rest of the year. With unemployment now a structural feature of the island economy, the first wave of Puerto Ricans began to leave for the mainland, searching either for work or after having been recruited to work in the agricultural industry. Consequently, the mainland population began to grow. Between 1930 and the outbreak of the Second World War, the mainland Puerto Rican population grew modestly from 53,000 to nearly 70,000, though by now, the overwhelming majority of Puerto Ricans (nearly 88 percent) could be found in New York City where they became low-wage workers in the region's expanding clothing manufacturing and service sectors. In addition, Puerto Rican entrepreneurs also began to expand what would soon become a thriving ethnic economy servicing the needs of the region's rapidly expanding population.[15]

Puerto Rican emigration to the mainland accelerated after the war. Facing chronic unemployment on the island (which fluctuated between 10.4 percent and 20 percent for the entire period between 1949 and 1977), and the dislocations in both the rural and urban work forces caused in part by "Operation Bootstrap," a massive government sponsored plan to attract investment and light industry to the island, the Puerto Rican mainland population jumped from fewer than 70,000 in 1940 to more than 300,000 in 1950 and continued to climb to 887,000 by 1960. Although the systematic shift from agriculture to "export-platform industrialization" under Operation Bootstrap was intended to stimulate economic growth and lift workers out of poverty (which occurred for a minority of Puerto Rican workers) chronic unemployment and underemployment&mdashand the economically driven migration that resulted&mdashhave been facts of Puerto Rican economic life since the 1950s.[16]

Demographic Developments since 1960

The demographic landscape of Latino America began to change dramatically in the 1960s as a result of a confluence of economic and geopolitical trends. In 1959, a revolutionary insurgency in Cuba led by Fidel Castro and Ernesto "Ché" Guevara shocked the world by overthrowing the regime of dictator Fulgencio Batista. Although Castro's political intentions remained unclear in the first months of his rule, by 1960 the ruling junta made it plain that it intended to rule Cuba under Marxist principles. In quick succession, a series of political purges and trials, expropriations, the nationalization of key industries and institutions (including labor unions and private schools), and the aborted invasion attempt by Cuban exiles at the infamous Bay of Pigs in the spring of 1961, led to a mass exodus of disaffected Cubans. Although a significant Cuban population had existed in the U.S. since the 19th century (mainly concentrated in Florida and New York City), virtually overnight the exodus of Cubans after the revolution created a major new Latino American population. Numbering fewer than 71,000 nationwide in 1950, the Cuban immigrant population shot up to 163,000 by 1960. [17]

A second wave of Cuban immigration occurred between 1965 and the early 1970s when the Castro regime agreed to allow Cubans who wished to be reunited with family members already in the U.S. to do so. Although initially caught by surprise by the Cuban government's decision, U.S. immigration officials provided a mechanism for the orderly entry of nearly 300,000 additional Cuban refugees. As a result, the Cuban population of the U.S. reached 638,000 by 1970, which accounted for 7.2 percent of nation's Latino population at the time.[18] During the 1980s, a third wave of out-migration from Cuba occurred (the infamous "Mariel boatlift"), swelling the numbers of Cubans in the U.S. by another 125,000.[19] These three major waves of post-1960 immigration provided the foundation for the modern Cuban American population, which currently stands at nearly 1.786 million, or 3.5 percent of the pan-Latino population of the U.S.[20]

The majority of Cubans and their children have tended to congregate in South Florida (nearly 70 percent of all Cubans continue to reside in Florida) but over time, Cubans and Cuban Americans&mdashlike other Latino migrants&mdashhave become more geographically dispersed over time. Although the different socioeconomic profiles of the three distinct waves of Cuban migration created a heterogeneous population in class terms, in aggregate, the immigrants that established the Cuban American population have the highest levels of socioeconomic attainment of the three major Latino subpopulations in the U.S. For example, in 2008, 25 percent of Cubans and Cuban Americans over age 25 had obtained at least a college degree (compared to just 12.9 percent of the overall U.S. Latino population) median income for persons over 16 was $26,478 (compared to median earnings of $21,488 for all Latinos) and 13.2 percent of Cubans lived below the poverty line (compared to 20.7 percent of the Latino population and 12.7 percent of the general U.S. population at that time).[21]

Political turmoil elsewhere in Latin America during the 1970s and 1980s&mdashparticularly in the Central American nations of El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua&mdashalso contributed to significant new Latin American immigration to the U.S. Again, although citizens of each of these nations had established small émigré populations in the U.S. well before the 1970s, the political turmoil of the 1970s and 1980s resulted in an unprecedented wave of migration as hundreds of thousands of Central Americans&mdashmany of them undocumented&mdashfled the violence of their homelands to enter the U.S. Caught between authoritarian regimes (often overtly or covertly supported by elements of the U.S. government) and left-wing insurgencies, Central American migrants became a significant part of the U.S. Latino population by 1990, when they reached an aggregate population of nearly 1.324 million. Reflecting their diverse origins and experiences, Central Americans have clustered in different areas of the country, with Salvadorans prominent in Los Angeles, Houston, San Francisco, New York, and Washington, D.C. Guatemalans in California and Texas Nicaraguans in Miami and Hondurans in Florida, Texas, and elsewhere. Although most of the Central American nations have stabilized politically since the 1990s, the long term economic disruption and displacement caused by protracted civil- and guerilla wars in the region has contributed to the continuing growth of this population (discussed further below).[22]

As dramatic as the story of Cuban and Central American political migration has been, however, the most significant development in Latino migration to the U.S. in recent history is rooted in profound economic shifts occurring both in the U.S. and in countries in the Western Hemisphere since the late 1960s and early 1970s. The first signs of things to come were the end of the Bracero Program in 1964 and a major overhaul of U.S. immigration law in 1965. Although both events have been touted as part of the wave of liberal reforms (including the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965) that characterized this tumultuous era, the end of the contract labor program and revamping of the U.S. immigration system helped hide from view some significant changes both in patterns of immigration and the utilization of immigrant labor in the U.S. These events also tended to obscure important structural changes in both the U.S. economy the economies of Latin America that continue to the present day.

One change that largely escaped public view at the time was the gradual replacement of braceros with unauthorized workers, the vast majority of them originating in Mexico. Although the use of braceros had steadily declined in the early 1960s until Congress allowed the program to lapse at the end of 1964, there is no indication that the steady demand for labor that had driven both authorized and unauthorized migration for the previous quarter-century had suddenly dropped appreciably. Given historical trends, it is much more likely that, as the program ran down, braceros were gradually replaced by unauthorized workers&mdashor, after their contracts expired, simply became unauthorized workers themselves.

In any case, border apprehensions began to rise again almost immediately after the guest worker program's demise. Whereas the INS reported apprehending an average of about 57,000 unauthorized migrants per year in the nine years between Operation Wetback, a federal program that deported illegal Mexican immigrants from the southwestern U.S.,and the end of the Bracero Program, apprehensions approached 100,000 again in 1965 and continued to rise sharply thereafter.[23] In that same year, the passage of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) Amendments (79 Stat. 911) almost certainly exacerbated this trend. Although the new law greatly liberalized extant policy by abolishing the national origins quota system and providing a first-come, first-served system for eligible immigrants, for the first time in history the INA imposed a ceiling of just 120,000 legal immigrants per year for the entire Western Hemisphere. Later adjustments in the law further lowered the number of visas available to Western Hemisphere countries.[24]

On the economic front, the 1973 Arab oil embargo further disrupted the American labor market and eventually helped lay the foundations for an even greater influx of both legal immigrants and unauthorized workers. The extended period of simultaneous contraction and inflation that followed the 1973 crisis&mdashand a series of neoliberal economic reforms that were instituted in response&mdashsignaled a massive reorganization of work and production processes that in many ways continue to the present day. This ongoing restructuring was regionally and temporally uneven, but across the economy the general long term trend was toward a contraction of comparatively secure high-wage, high-benefit (often union) jobs in the manufacturing and industrial sectors and a corresponding growth of increasingly precarious low-wage, low benefit, often non-union jobs in the expanding service and informal sectors of a transformed economy.

In the international arena, the deepening global debt crisis and austerity measures imposed on many Latin American countries over this same period by the World Bank and International Monetary Fund set the stage for even more drastic economic restructuring and displacement abroad.[25] These developments also dramatically altered the gendered composition of immigrant flows. Whereas prior to this time, migration from Latin America to the U.S. was heavily skewed toward males of working age, economic restructuring abroad eventually led to a growing number of women and children entering the migrant stream. The gender breakdown of immigrant populations varies from region to region, (with Mexican migration, for example, remaining somewhat skewed toward males and Dominican migration heavily skewed toward females) but the general trend in Latin American immigration since the 1970s and 1980s has been a pronounced feminization of migratory flows. As a result, although men still outnumber women, the aggregate Latin American population of foreign birth in the U.S. is rapidly approaching gender equilibrium.[26]

The effects of the combination of these dramatic structural shifts have played out differently in different regions of Latin America. In Mexico, the nation that historically has sent the largest numbers of migrants to the U.S., the deepening debt crisis, periodic devaluations of the peso, and natural disasters like the great earthquake of 1985 helped to stimulate even more intense waves of out-migration by both males and females. As already noted, political turmoil and violence had similar effects on the nations of Central America. Moreover, in impoverished Caribbean nations like the Dominican Republic, the attraction of finding work in the U.S. (especially for Dominican women) has led to even more explosive growth in the émigré population. Whereas the Dominican population of the U.S. stood at fewer than 100,000 in 1970, by 1980, it had grown to more than 171,000, and as will be seen below, has continued to grow dramatically since.[27]

At the other end of the economic spectrum, ongoing economic restructuring in South America has led to a situation in which highly educated and highly skilled individuals from countries including Argentina, Chile, Columbia, Peru, Ecuador, and others have emigrated to the U.S. seeking economic opportunities not available to them in their places of origin. For example, according to a recent analysis of 2000 U.S. Census data, whereas only 2.3 percent of all Mexican migrants arriving in the U.S. in the 1980s had bachelor's degrees, 30 percent of those arriving from Peru and Chile, 33 percent of Argentine immigrants, and 40 percent of all Venezuelan immigrants had at least a bachelor's degree. For different reasons, this kind of "brain drain" migration has increased significantly in recent years. For example, between 2000 and 2010, the U.S. population of Chilean and Columbian descent or origin nearly doubled, and the resident population of Argentinian, Bolivian, Ecuadorian, Peruvian, and Venezuelan origin or heritage more than doubled.[28]

As always, the economic dependence of the U.S. labor market on both "legal" and "illegal" immigrants has inevitably cemented and extended links of mutual dependence to immigrant-sending regions and thus has also contributed to the continuing cycle of licit and illicit movement into U.S. territory. Since the 1970s, the same kinds of social networks previously established by European, Asian, and Mexican immigrants have been expanded by more recent migrants, strengthening the bonds of interdependence that have tied some immigrant-source regions to the U.S. for more than a century. The depth of this interdependence becomes clear when one considers the scale of remittances sent by migrants of all statuses to their countries of origin. One study notes that as recently as 2003, 14 percent of the adults in Ecuador, 18 percent of the adults in Mexico, and an astonishing one-in-four of all adults in Central America reported receiving remittances from abroad.[29]In 2007, Mexico alone received more than $24 billion in remittances from its citizens abroad. Before the global economic contraction of 2008, when remittances peaked worldwide, remittances constituted at least 19 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of Honduras, 16 percent of El Salvador's, 15 percent of Haiti's, and 10 percent of the GDP of both Nicaragua and Guatemala.[30]In short, in-sourcing of immigrant labor has become a deeply embedded structural feature of both the supply and demand side of the licit and illicit immigration equation and is, therefore, that much more difficult to arrest with unilateral policy interventions.

The effects of these interlocking trends have been intensified by ongoing neoliberal "free trade" negotiations and agreements designed to reduce trade barriers and foster greater regional economic integration. In the U.S., the two signal developments in this area, the ratification of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in 1994 and a similar initiative, the Central American Free Trade Agreement (which is currently being implemented on an incremental basis with several Caribbean, Central-, and South American nations) have been tremendously successful in increasing trade between the signatories. For example, since the ratification of NAFTA in 1994, trade between the U.S. and Canada has tripled, while that between the U.S. and Mexico has quadrupled. At the same time, however, these agreements also provided the means for U.S-based firms to export parts of their production processes to comparatively low-wage and laxly regulated economies while downsizing production capacities (and shedding higher-wage, often-unionized labor) within the borders of the U.S. Together, these structural changes laid the foundations for an intensification of two trends that have come to define the U.S. economy at the turn of the 21st century: the downsizing and outsourcing of production processes that were once based in the U.S. and a concomitant trend toward what might be called labor "in-sourcing" of ever larger numbers of both authorized and unauthorized immigrants.[31]

The stunning result of structural reshaping of the economy has been seen in two interrelated developments: the explosive growth of a Latino population with origins in virtually all the nations of Latin America, and an unprecedented explosion of the unauthorized population in the U.S. In 1970, the Latino population hovered around 9.6 million and constituted less than 5 percent of the nation's population. After that date, however, the Latino population not only grew dramatically but also became much more diverse. Overall, the nation's Latino population grew to at least 14.6 million by 1980, rose to 22.4 million in 1990, increased to 35.3 million in 2000, and approached 50 million by 2010.[32] Although ethnic Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, and Cubans remain the majority of the Latino population (constituting 63, 9.2, and 3.5 percent of the total, respectively, in 2010), new immigrant influxes from elsewhere in Latin America created a more complex demography in which Central Americans (7.9 percent), South Americans (5.5 percent), and Dominicans (2.8 percent of the total) now also have significant population clusters. The three major Latino subpopulations of ethnic Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, and Cubans grew substantially in the decade between the 2000 and 2010 U.S. Censuses (charting increases of 54, 36, and 44 percent respectively), but other Latino populations from sending regions in Central and South America grew at a much faster rate, ranging from an 85 percent increase in the Dominican immigrant community to a 191 percent increase in the Honduran population.

Overall, the immigrant populations of virtually all Spanish-speaking nations of the Western Hemisphere grew substantially in the decade between 2000 and 2010. The Dominican population of the U.S. increased from 765,000 to 1.4 million the Guatemalan population jumped from 372,000 to 1.04 million Hondurans from 218,000 to 633,000 Nicaraguans from 178,000 to 348,000, and Salvadorans from 655,000 to 1.6 million.[33] As of 2011, the combined pan-Latino population is estimated to have reached a figure of 50,478,000, more than 16 percent of the total population of the U.S.[34]

The number of unauthorized persons&mdashagain predominantly from Latin America but also from virtually every other nation on earth as well&mdashhas grown at similar rates since the 1970s. Reflecting ongoing economic displacement, chronic unemployment and underemployment, simmering civil unrest, and the escalating violence associated with the rise of the drug trade, human trafficking, and other illicit economic activities, unauthorized migration has risen along with legal immigration. It has always been difficult to estimate the actual numbers of undocumented persons within U.S. borders at any one moment, but demographers believe that in aggregate, the unauthorized population of the country rose from approximately 3 million in 1980, to about 5 million by the mid-1990s, reached an estimated 8.4 million by 2000, and peaked at between 11 and 12 million (or about 4 percent of the total U.S. population) before turning downward after the financial crisis of 2008-09. With much of the global economy in a sustained slump since then, the unauthorized population is estimated to have dropped by at least one million since 2009.[35]

While it is difficult to pinpoint the exact causes of slowing rates of unauthorized migration, heightened security measures and the ongoing recession have clearly contributed to the steep declines seen in recent years. Apprehensions reported by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement have dropped from a recent peak of nearly 1.64 million in 2000 to fewer than 450,000 in 2010. By 2011, border apprehensions had dropped even further to 340,252, a number that would have been almost unimaginable just five years earlier.[36] At the same time, deportations and enforced "evoluntary departures" of unauthorized persons have risen sharply in recent years. According to data released by U.S. Immigration and Customs enforcement, deportations and other enforced departures rose from 291,000 in fiscal 2007 to nearly 400,000 in fiscal 2011&mdashand were on an even higher numerical pace though the first five months of fiscal 2012.[37] Whether such trends continue when the economy recovers is an open question, especially given the increasingly integral role unauthorized workers have come to play in the economy.[38]

One other note should be added to this discussion. Although for reasons discussed elsewhere in this essay the phenomenon of illegal immigration has commonly been associated almost exclusively with Mexicans, one should note that most migration scholars agree that somewhere between 40 and 50 percent of all persons not legally in the country are individuals who did not cross the border illegally but rather have overstayed valid tourist, student, or other visas. Thus, although illegal immigration has come to be perceived primarily as a "Mexican problem," Mexicans ultimately accounted for about 58 percent of the estimated total in 2010&mdashthe remaining 42 percent, many of them visa violators, came from virtually every other nation in the world.[39]

It is impossible to predict the future, but the entwined questions of Latin America immigration and the status of the millions of unauthorized Latin American immigrants currently in the U.S. will almost certainly continue to be two of the most complex and vexing issues on the American political landscape. On the one hand, growing international market competition makes it likely that the U.S. economy will continue to depend heavily on the labor of foreigners&mdashand if patterns of regional economic integration continue, it is almost certain that Latin American immigrants of all statuses will continue to play a major role in the economic development of the nation. Indeed, before the current economic contraction, patterns of immigrant labor insourcing had accelerated to the extent that immigrants of all legal statuses were filling jobs in the U.S. at a rate comparable to the one that existed in the great age of industrial migration more than a century ago. Although the ongoing recession has clearly suppressed the hiring of both native and foreign workers, recent data reveals just how much immigrant workers have become crucial components of American economic life.

According to U.S. Census data, as recently as 2007, highly-skilled "legal" immigrants had become essential in many key economic sectors, constituting fully 44 percent of all medical scientists, 37 percent of all physical scientists, 34 percent of all computer software engineers, 31 percent of all economists, 30 percent of all computer engineers, and 27 percent of all physicians and surgeons. With citizen members of the "baby boom" generation entering retirement in ever-increasing numbers, demographers predict that pressure to recruit highly educated and highly skilled immigrants will continue to rise.[40]

In the vast occupational landscape below such elite professions, immigrant workers of all legal statuses (the U.S. Census does not distinguish between "legal" and unsanctioned workers) have also become structurally embedded in virtually every job category in the economy. As would be expected, more than half of all agricultural workers, plasterers, tailors, dressmakers, sewing machine operators, and "personal appearance workers" are immigrants. Authorized and unauthorized immigrant workers are estimated to constitute another 40 to 50 percent of all drywall workers, packers and packaging workers, and maids and housekeepers. In the next tier, immigrants comprised 30 to 40 percent of all roofers, painters, meat and fish processors, cement workers, brick masons, cooks, groundskeepers, laundry workers, textile workers, and dishwashers. Beyond their expected presence in these labor-intensive occupations, however, immigrants of all statuses are estimated to hold 20 to 30 percent of at least 36 additional occupational categories.[41] But in addition to the numbers captured in official labor statistics, it is also important to keep in mind that untold numbers of other noncitizens toil in the vast and expanding reaches of the "informal" or unregulated "gray" and subterranean "black" market economies.[42] Indeed, the turn to licit and illicit immigrant labor at all levels of the economy has been so great that it is estimated that foreign workers accounted for half of all jobs created in the U.S. between 1996 and 2000 and comprised at least 16 percent of the total U.S. work force at the turn of the twenty-first century.[43]

Of course, on the other hand, the increasingly visible use of immigrant workers and the growth and dispersal of the Latino population since the 1980s into areas such as the American South and the industrial Northeast&mdashplaces where few Latinos have ever been seen in substantial numbers before&mdashhave fanned the flames of dissent and nativism among those who are infuriated not only with what they see as the unconscionable expansion of the nation's unauthorized population, but more generally, with the erosion of domestic living standards associated with the ongoing restructuring of the U.S. economy. Fears about the inexorable aging of the "white" citizen population and the rapid growth of a comparably youthful non-white Latino population have tended to heighten resentment against the foreign-born and their children&mdashand especially against those without legal status. (In 2010, the median age of non-Hispanic white persons was 42, compared to a median age of 27 for all Latinos).[44] The widespread sense that the Federal Government&mdashand lawmakers in both political parties&mdashhave not seriously enforced existing law obviously has also added to the frustration of those holding such views.

Consequently, in what is clearly the most dramatic recent development in the debate over immigration and border control policy, states and localities have entered the fray by enacting a range of measures designed to pressure unauthorized persons to leave their jurisdictions. Following precedents set by activists in California and elsewhere, localities such as Hazleton, Pennsylvania in the East, Escondido, California in the West, and at least 130 other American towns and cities in between have passed local ordinances that do everything from criminalizing the hiring of unauthorized day laborers, making it illegal to rent to unauthorized residents, suspending business licenses of firms employing unauthorized workers, and criminalizing the public use of languages other than English. In addition, a number of states&mdashperhaps most notoriously Arizona, and more recently, Indiana, Georgia, Alabama, and others&mdashhave debated and/or enacted a variety of measures designed to pressure unauthorized persons to depart their jurisdictions. In 2010 alone, states passed more than 300 such laws, including measures requiring local law enforcement officials, teachers, social workers, health-care providers, private-sector employers, and others to verify the citizenship of any individual they encounter in their official duties or businesses&mdashand make it a crime for non-citizens not to have documents verifying their legal status. Some have gone so far as to propose that unauthorized persons be prohibited from driving (or, for that matter, be barred from receiving any kind of state license), and that states not recognize the U.S. citizenship of infants born of unauthorized residents, regardless of the birthright citizenship provision of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Federal courts have thus far tended to enjoin or strike down such statutes as violations of federal prerogative in immigration matters, but the future in this arena of immigration and citizenship politics and jurisprudence remains uncertain.[45]

Given the tremendously unstable state of the U.S. and global economies and the highly politicized debate over border enforcement and undocumented immigration in the second decade of the century, it is impossible to predict even partial resolution to these festering controversies. Although the continuing precariousness of the economy may well lay the groundwork for the projection of more force on U.S. borders and an even more hostile climate for Latinos and non-citizens already within U.S. territory, global economic trends will almost certainly continue to create incentives for the ongoing structural use and abuse of both officially authorized and unauthorized Latino immigrant workers. Under these circumstances, it is likely that the historical debate over border enforcement, the continuing growth of the pan-Latino population, and the status of unauthorized persons will persist into the foreseeable future.

David Gutiérrez, Ph.D., is a Professor of History at the University of California, San Diego, and Academic Senate Distinguished Teacher and Vice-Chair, Academic Affairs. He teaches Chicano history, comparative immigration and ethnic history, and politics of the 20th century United States. His major works include Walls and Mirrors: Mexican Americans Mexican Immigrants and the Politics of Ethnicity Between Two Worlds: Mexican Immigrants in the United States and The Columbia History of Latinos in the United States since 1960. His current research is focused on immigration, citizenship, and non-citizenship in 20th-century American history and the demographic revolution, 1970s to the present. He received his Ph.D. in History from Stanford University.

[1] Historical Statistics of the United States: Earliest Times to the Present, Vol. 1, Part A-Population, ed. Susan B. Carter et al., (New York: Cambridge University Press, 2006), 1-177, table Aa 2189-2215, Hispanic Population Estimates, By Sex, Race, Hispanic Origin, Residence, Nativity: 1850-1990 and Seth Motel and Eileen Patten, "Hispanic Origin Profiles," (Washington, DC: Pew Hispanic Center, June 27, 2012), 1.

[2] For brief overviews of the U.S.-Mexican War and the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, see Richard Griswold del Castillo, The Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo: A Legacy of Conflict (Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1990) and Ernesto Chávez, The U.S. War with Mexico: A Brief History with Documents (Boston: Bedford/St. Martin's, 2008).

[3] For detailed data on Mexican immigration during the 19th century, see Historical Statistics of the United States: Earliest Times to the Present, vol. 1, Part A-Population, ed. Susan B. Carter et al., New York: Cambridge University Press, 2006), table Ad 162-172 "Immigration by Country of Last Residence&mdashNorth America": 1820-1997, 1-571.

[4] See Arnoldo De León and Richard Griswold del Castillo, North to Aztlán A History of Mexican Americans in the United States, 2nd ed. (Wheeling, IN: Harlan Davidson, 2006), 87, table 5.1, and 90, table 5.2 and Brian Gratton and Myron P. Gutmann, "Hispanics in the United States, 1850-1990: Estimates of Population Size and National Origin," Historical Methods 33, no. 3 (Summer 2000): 137-153.

[5] For details of the Mexican repatriation campaigns of the 1930s, see Francisco E. Balderrama and Raymond Rodríguez, Decade of Betrayal: Mexican Repatriation in the 1930s, rev. ed. (Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press, 2006).

[6] For trenchant analyses of the politics surrounding the development of the Emergency Farm Labor Program, see Manuel García y Griego, "The Importation of Mexican Contract Labors to the United States, 1942-1964," in The Border That Joins: Mexican Migrants and U.S. Responsibility, ed. Peter G. Brown and Henry Shue (Totowa, NJ: Rowman & Littlefield, 1983): 49-98 and Katherine M. Donato, U.S. Policy and Mexican Migration to the United States, 1942-1992," Social Science Quarterly 75, no. 4 (1994): 705-29. For discussion of the Bracero Program in the global context of other "guest worker" programs, see Cindy Hahamovitch, No Man's Land: Jamaican Guestworkers in America and the Global History of Deportable Labor (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2011).

[7] See United States Congress, Senate, Committee on the Judiciary, History of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, 96th Cong. 2d Sess., Dec. 1980 (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1980): 51, 57, 65.

[8] U.S. Department of Justice, Immigration and Naturalization Service, Statistical Yearbook of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, 1978 (Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1978), table 13, 36.

[10] Philip Martin, "There is Nothing More Permanent Than Temporary Foreign Workers," in Backgrounder (Washington, DC: Center for Immigration Studies, April 2001).

[11] Gratton and Gutmann, "Hispanics in the United States," 143, table 3.

[12] For information on the Smithsonian's Bracero Archive, see, accessed June 19, 2012. For the Bittersweet Harvest project, see, accessed June 19, 2012.

[13] For analysis of the convoluted politics surrounding the annexation of Puerto Rico and the framing of the Jones Act of 1917, see Foreign in a Domestic Sense: Puerto Rico, American Expansion, and the Constitution, ed. Christina Duffy Burnett and Burke Marshall (Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2001).

[14] See Balzac v. Porto Rico 258 U.S. 298 (1922), 308. See also José A. Cabranes, Citizenship and the American Empire: Notes on the Legislative History of the United States Citizenship of Puerto Ricans (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1979).

[15] U.S. Bureau of the Census, Census of the Population, 1970, Subject Report PC (2)-1E, Puerto Ricans in the United States (Washington, D.C., 1973), table 1. For incisive analyses of the establishment and expansion of the Puerto Rican community of greater New York, see Kelvin A. Santiago-Valles and Gladys M. Jiménez-Muñoz, "Social Polarization and Colonized Labor: Puerto Ricans in the United States, 1945-2000," in The Columbia History of Latinos Since 1960, ed. David G. Gutiérrez, (New York: Columbia University Press, 2004): 87-145 and Lorrin Thomas, Puerto Rican Citizen: History and Political Identity in Twentieth-Century New York City (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2010).

[16] See James L. Dietz, Economic History of Puerto Rico: Institutional Change and Capitalist Development (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1986) and Pedro A. Caban, "Industrial Transformation and Labor Relations in Puerto Rico: From ‘Operation Bootstrap' to the 1970s," Journal of Latin American Studies 21, no. 3 (Aug. 1989): 559-91.

[17] Historical Statistics of the United States, 1-177, table Aa 2189-2215

[18] See María Cristina García, "Exiles, Immigrants, and Transnationals: The Cuban Communities of the United States," in The Columbia History of Latinos in the United States Since 1960: 146-86.

[19] See Ibid, 157-67 and Ruth Ellen Wasen, "Cuban Migration to the United States: Policy and Trends (Washington, DC: Congressional Research Service, June 2, 2009)
R40566.pdf, accessed March 25, 2012.

[20] See Sharon R. Ennis, Merarys Ríos-Vargas, and Nora G. Albert, "The Hispanic Population: 2010," 2010 Census Briefs (Washington, DC: U.S. Census Bureau, 2011), table 1.

[21] See Pew Hispanic Center, "Hispanics of Cuban Origin in the United States, 2008&mdashFact Sheet," (Washington, DC: Pew Hispanic Center, April 22, 2010).

[22] See Norma Stoltz Chinchilla and Nora Hamilton, "Central American Immigrants: Diverse Populations, Changing Communities," in The Columbia History of Latinos Since 1960: 186-228.

[23] See INS, Statistical Yearbook, 1978, table 23, 62.

[24] See Patricia Fernández Kelly and Douglas S. Massey, "Borders for Whom? The Role of NAFTA in Mexico-U.S. Migration," Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 610, no. 1 (Mar. 2007): 98-118 Douglas S. Massey, Jorge Durand, and Nolan J. Malone, Beyond Smoke and Mirrors: Mexican Immigration in an Era of Economic Integration (New York: Russell Sage Foundation, 2002) and Raúl Delgado Wise and Humberto Márquez Covarrubias, "Capitalist Restructuring, Development and Labor Migration: The U.S.-Mexico Case," Third World Quarterly 29, no. 7 (Oct. 2008): 1359-74.

[25] For discussion of the broad implications of these worldwide shifts in economic activity, see David Harvey, "Neoliberalism as Creative Destruction," Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 610, no. 1 (Mar. 2007): 21-44 and Cheol-Sung Lee, "International Migration, Deindustrialization, and Union Decline in 16 Affluent OECD Countries, 1962-1997," Social Forces 84, no. 1 (Sept. 2005): 71-88.

[26] For discussion of the changing gender balance of Latin American immigration, see Jacqueline M. Hagan, "Social Networks, Gender, and Immigrant Settlement: Resource and Constraint," American Sociological Review 63, no. 1 (1998): 55-67 Shawn M. Kanaiaupuni, "Reframing the Migration Question: Men, Women, and Gender in Mexico," Social Forces 78, no. 4: 1311-48 Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo, Gender and U.S. Immigration: Contemporary Trends (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2003) and Katherine M. Donato, "U.S. Migration from Latin America: Gendered Patterns and Shifts," Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 630 (2010): 78-92. For a statistical breakdown of the gender balance for both foreign-born and U.S.-born Latinos see, Pew Hispanic Center, Statistical Portrait of Hispanics in the United States: 2010 (Washington, DC: Pew Hispanic Center, 2012), Table 10a&mdashAge and Gender Distribution for Race, Ethnicity, and Nativity Groups: 2010.

[27] See Ramona Hernández and Francisco L. Rivera-Batiz, "Dominicans in the United States: A Socioeconomic Profile, 2000," Dominican Research Monographs (New York: City University of New York, Dominican Studies Institute, 2003), table 1.

[28] See U.S. Census, "The Hispanic Population, 2010," table 1 and Çağlar Özden, "Brain Drain in Latin America," paper delivered at the Expert Group Meeting on International Migration and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean, Population Division, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, United Nations Secretariat, Mexico City, Nov. 30-Dec. 2, 2005, UN/POP/EGM-MIG/2005/10 (Feb. 2006),

[29] See Roberto Suro, "Remittance Senders and Receivers: Tracking the Transnational Channels," (Washington, DC: Pew Hispanic Center, Nov. 23, 2003).

[30] World Bank, Migration and Remittances Unit, Migration and Remittances Factbook, 2011, i migrantandremittances, accessed July 25, 2011.

[31] See Fernández Kelly and Massey, "Borders for Whom?" Wise and Covarrubias, "Capitalist Restructuring" and Raúl Delgado Wise, "Migration and Imperialism: The Mexican Workforce in the Context of NAFTA," Latin American Perspectives 33, no. 2 (Mar. 2006): 33-45.

[32] See Mary M. Kent, Kelvin J. Pollard, John Haaga, and Mark Mather, "First Glimpses from the 2000 U.S. Census," Population Bulletin 56, no. 2 (June 2001): 14 and Jeffrey S. Passel and D'Vera Cohn, "How Many Hispanics? Comparing New Census Counts with the Latest Census Estimates," (Washington, DC: Pew Hispanic Center, March 30, 2011).

[33] See U.S. Census Bureau, "The Hispanic Population: 2010," table 1.

[34] See Passel and Cohn, "How Many Hispanics?" and Pew Hispanic Center, "Statistical Portrait of Hispanics in the United States, 2010," table 1.

[35] See Jeffrey Passel and D`Vera Cohn, "The Unauthorized Immigrant Population: National and State Trends, 2010," (Washington, DC: Pew Hispanic Center, Feb. 1, 2011).

[36] See Richard Marosi, "New Border Foe: Boredom," Los Angeles Times, April 21, 2011: A1.

[37] See U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, "ICE Total Removals through Feb. 20, 2012,", accessed June 15, 2012.

[38] For a recent analysis of the downturn in both authorized and unauthorized migration from Mexico, see Jeffrey Passel, D'Vera Cohn and Ana González-Barrera, "Net Migration from Mexico Falls to Zero&mdashand Perhaps Less," (Washington, DC: Pew Hispanic Center, April 2012).

[39] Passel and Cohn estimate that of the non-Mexican unauthorized population, 23 percent originated in Latin America, 11 percent in Asia, 4 percent in Canada and Europe, and another 3 percent, or about 400,000 persons, in Africa and elsewhere in the world. See Passel and Cohn, "The Unauthorized Immigrant Population: National and State Trends, 2010," 11.

[40] See Teresa Watanabe, "Shortage of Skilled Workers Looms in U.S.," Los Angeles Times, April 21, 2008: A1 and Ricardo López, "Jobs for Skilled Workers Are Going Unfilled," Los Angeles Times, June 8, 2012: B1.

[41] See Steven A. Camarota and Karen Jensenius, "Jobs Americans Won't Do? A Detailed Look at Immigrant Employment by Occupation," (Washington, DC: Center for Immigration Studies, Aug. 2009), especially table 1 American Immigration Law Foundation, "Mexican Immigrant Workers and the U.S. Economy: An Increasingly Vital Role," Immigration Policy Focus 1, no. 2 (Sept. 2002): 1-14 A.T. Mosisa, "The Role of Foreign-Born Workers in the U.S. Economy," Monthly Labor Review 125, no. 5 (2002): 3-14 Diane Lindquist "Undocumented Workers Toil in Many Fields," San Diego Union-Tribune, Sept. 4, 2006: A1 and Gordon H. Hanson, "The Economic Logic of Illegal Immigration," Council Special Report No. 26, (Washington, DC: Council on Foreign Relations, 2007). For an insightful case-study analysis of the structural replacement of domestic workers by the foreign-born in one key industry, see William Kandel and Emilio A. Parrado, "Restructuring the U.S. Meat Processing Industry and New Hispanic Migrant Destinations," Population and Development Review 31, no. 3 (Sept. 2005): 447-71.

[42] See James DeFilippis, "On the Character and Organization of Unregulated Work in the Cities of the United States," Urban Geography 30, no. 1 (2009): 63-90.

[43] See M. Tossi, "A Century of Change: The U.S. Labor Force, 1950-2050," Monthly Labor Review 125, no. 5 (2002): 15-28.

[44] See Pew Hispanic Center, "Statistical Portrait of Hispanics in the United States," table 9.

[45] See J. Esbenshade and B. Obzurt, "Local Immigration Regulation: A Problematic Trend in Public Policy," Harvard Journal of Hispanic Policy 20 (2008): 33-47 Kyle E. Walker and Helga Leitner, "The Variegated Landscape of Local Immigration Policies in the United States," Urban Geography 32, no. 2 (2011): 156-78 Monica W. Varsanyi, "Neoliberalism and Nativism: Local Anti-Immigrant Policy Activism and an Emerging Politics of Scale," International Journal of Urban and Regional Research 35, no. 2 (March 2011): 295-311 and Richard Fausset, "Alabama Enacts Strict Immigration Law," Los Angeles Times, June 10, 2011: A8.

Book Review: History’s 9 Most Insane Rulers

History’s 9 Most Insane Rulers, Scott Rank, Regnery History

Can the insane rule? Can insanity be a leadership quality? The author takes a fascinating look at nine of history’s most notorious rulers. While reading History’s 9 Most Insane Rulers you will meet:

  • King Charles VI of France, who thought he was made of glass
  • Emperor Caligula, who build temples to himself made his horse a senator, and marched his armies all the way to Britain for no reason
  • The Russian tsar who became know as Ivan “the Terrible”
  • King George III of Britain, who not only lost his American colonies, but also lost his mind
  • Bavaria’s “Mad” King Ludwig II, who left the world richer for his fabulous fairy-tale castles built in the late 1800s, long after castles had gone out of style. He had imaginary friends and loved to take dangerously high-speed, midnight sleigh rides through the Alps, even in blizzards

This book is both entertaining and illuminating and is a read for anyone who is interested in the role insanity played in history. This book presents the word’s most unbelievably deranged leaders and their all-consuming addiction to power.

You will also gain insight into North Korean Communist dictator Kim Jong-il and Saddam Hussein as the author gives intimate details of these deeply flawed but powerful men, as he examines the role that madness played in their lives, the repercussions of their madness on history, and what their madness can tell us about the times in which they lived.

Excerpt:”…being mad was perhaps the most appropriate way to rule in mad times”-page xix

Rulers who mad “mad” by our definition could actually have been responding in the most reasonable way in their circumstances. They faced challenges that are unimaginable today. Ivan the Terrible killed thousands of his own subjects, but he did so (by is own reasoning) to secure the Russian Empire against external threats….Caligula behaved horribly toward the Roman Senate and aristocracy, but it could have been a calculated attempt to demean them and weaken their power….From their perspectives, being mad was perhaps the most appropriate way to rule in mad times. With these questions in mind, let us look at the nine most insane rulers in history.

About the Author: Scott Rank is the author of 12 books including the Age of Illumination: Science, Technology, and Reason in the Middle Ages, Lost Civilizations, and Off the Edge of the Map: Travelers and Explorers that Pushed the Boundaries of the Unknown World. His books have been translated into nine languages. Rank is a historian of the Ottoman Empire and modern Turkey, and he is a professor and podcaster. He earned his Ph.D. in history from Central European University in Budapest, Hungary. Before going down the academic route, he worked as a journalist in Istanbul. Rank is the host of the podcast, History Unplugged.

Carol graduated from Riverside White Cross School of Nursing in Columbus, Ohio and received her diploma as a registered nurse. She attended Bowling Green State University where she received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in History and Literature. She attended the University of Toledo, College of Nursing, and received a Master’s of Nursing Science Degree as an Educator.

She has traveled extensively, is a photographer, and writes on medical issues. Carol has three children RJ, Katherine, and Stephen – one daughter-in-law Katie – two granddaughters Isabella Marianna and Zoe Olivia – and one grandson, Alexander Paul. She also shares her life with husband Gordon Duff, many cats, and two rescue pups.

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