Border Fence

Big

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If you don’t know French this video basically says poor Haitian it is all the Dominican fault. DR has the economy that is dynamic and growing and not the poorest in this hemisphere. It unfortunately does not show the reverse impact to the Dominican Republic. Watching documentaries like leaves the viewer thinking DR is a first world country that is not doing its part. I am sure you can read in between the lines what I think is missing from such pieces.
well, he is in fact speaking French' so the Haitians won't be able to understand it.
 

windeguy

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Jul 10, 2004
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Unfortunately this article is behind a paywall now.
But in my opinion it is a comprehensive and accurate assessment of the boondoggle known as the Border wall of the 🇩🇴 .

A 102-Mile Wall Is Separating an Island's Haves and Have-Nots​

The Dominican Republic is building a barrier to insulate one of the region’s most successful economies from chaos in Haiti.
By
Jim Wyss
September 28, 2022 at 12:01 AM GMT-4

Share this article​


Santiago Riverón likes to project the image of rugged, frontier lawman. The mayor of a bustling little outpost along the Dominican Republic’s border with Haiti, he’s partial to white cowboy hats and blue jeans. On the wall of his office hangs a Winchester pump-action shotgun.
It’s mounted just above a flag of the Dominican Republic, and it symbolizes, he says, the same thing as the border wall that’s being built just miles down the road: “our sovereignty.” When finished, the wall, an imposing 13-foot-tall structure built out of concrete and steel, will stretch some 102 miles (164 kilometers), blanketing all but the most inhospitable parts of the frontier. Only one border wall in all of the Americas — the one separating the US from Mexico — is longer.

(the rest of it is blocked even with my paywall unblocker)....
 

Big

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Apr 24, 2019
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113

A 102-Mile Wall Is Separating an Island's Haves and Have-Nots​

The Dominican Republic is building a barrier to insulate one of the region’s most successful economies from chaos in Haiti.
By
Jim Wyss
September 28, 2022 at 12:01 AM GMT-4

Share this article​


Santiago Riverón likes to project the image of rugged, frontier lawman. The mayor of a bustling little outpost along the Dominican Republic’s border with Haiti, he’s partial to white cowboy hats and blue jeans. On the wall of his office hangs a Winchester pump-action shotgun.
It’s mounted just above a flag of the Dominican Republic, and it symbolizes, he says, the same thing as the border wall that’s being built just miles down the road: “our sovereignty.” When finished, the wall, an imposing 13-foot-tall structure built out of concrete and steel, will stretch some 102 miles (164 kilometers), blanketing all but the most inhospitable parts of the frontier. Only one border wall in all of the Americas — the one separating the US from Mexico — is longer.

(the rest of it is blocked even with my paywall unblocker)....
they can't build it fast enough or strong enough
 
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jd426

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I am trying to understand why its the Dominican Republics FAULT that the Haitian People are the " Have nots" ?
If anything , they are allowed into the DR ( Illegally) to WORK and send Money back to their People.
what more is the DR supposed to do ? provide a WELFARE system for the whole Country of Haiti .
Haiti Govt is an has always been Corrupt to the Core, and yes their people are suffering because of it .
Not even a TRILLION DOLLARS can fix Haiti .
I agree with the Wall, the DR is allowed to secure their Border.
 
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CristoRey

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Apr 1, 2014
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Unfortunately this article is behind a paywall now.
But in my opinion it is a comprehensive and accurate assessment of the boondoggle known as the Border wall of the 🇩🇴 .

Interesting article.
Unfortunately the Dominican Republic is not in the position to absorb an influx of illegals.
 

NALs

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Jan 20, 2003
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If you don’t know French this video basically says poor Haitian it is all the Dominican fault. DR has the economy that is dynamic and growing and not the poorest in this hemisphere. It unfortunately does not show the reverse impact to the Dominican Republic. Watching documentaries like leaves the viewer thinking DR is a first world country that is not doing its part. I am sure you can read in between the lines what I think is missing from such pieces.
France 24

If their is a country that has done the most damage to Hispaniola, it’s a particular place north of Spain and Italy, south of Great Britain. They should do a story about that.

Oh wait… (How do you say that in French?)
 
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AlaPlaya

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A 102-Mile Wall Is Separating an Island's Haves and Have-Nots​

The Dominican Republic is building a barrier to insulate one of the region’s most successful economies from chaos in Haiti.
By
Jim Wyss
September 28, 2022 at 12:01 AM GMT-4

Share this article​


Santiago Riverón likes to project the image of rugged, frontier lawman. The mayor of a bustling little outpost along the Dominican Republic’s border with Haiti, he’s partial to white cowboy hats and blue jeans. On the wall of his office hangs a Winchester pump-action shotgun.
It’s mounted just above a flag of the Dominican Republic, and it symbolizes, he says, the same thing as the border wall that’s being built just miles down the road: “our sovereignty.” When finished, the wall, an imposing 13-foot-tall structure built out of concrete and steel, will stretch some 102 miles (164 kilometers), blanketing all but the most inhospitable parts of the frontier. Only one border wall in all of the Americas — the one separating the US from Mexico — is longer.

(the rest of it is blocked even with my paywall unblocker)....
I opened it in an incognito browser. Below is the text and some of the photos. Some of the graphs are interactive and couldn't be copied:

A 102-Mile Wall Is Separating an Island's Haves and Have-Nots​

The Dominican Republic is building a barrier to insulate one of the region’s most successful economies from chaos in Haiti.
By Jim Wyss
September 28, 2022 at 12:01 AM GMT-4

Santiago Riverón likes to project the image of rugged, frontier lawman. The mayor of a bustling little outpost along the Dominican Republic’s border with Haiti, he’s partial to white cowboy hats and blue jeans. On the wall of his office hangs a Winchester pump-action shotgun.

It’s mounted just above a flag of the Dominican Republic, and it symbolizes, he says, the same thing as the border wall that’s being built just miles down the road: “our sovereignty.” When finished, the wall, an imposing 13-foot-tall structure built out of concrete and steel, will stretch some 102 miles (164 kilometers), blanketing all but the most inhospitable parts of the frontier. Only one border wall in all of the Americas — the one separating the US from Mexico — is longer.

Dominican Republic border wall

Santiago Riverón Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

Riverón, a burly, graying man of 50, describes his town, Dajabón, as a flash point of the immigration debate that’s raging in societies across the globe — in Poland, Hungary, Chile, the US — after the pandemic sank hundreds of millions of people deeper into poverty in developing countries. Riverón knows that his tiny town wouldn't exist without the cross-border trade with Haiti and yet, in language that borrows from the playbook of Donald Trump and Viktor Orban, he says everything is spinning out of control now. Haitians fleeing the poorest country in the Americas — one beset by the world’s worst levels of food insecurity, an all-but failed government and land made infertile by deforestation and climate change — are, as he sees it, overwhelming local hospitals, strewing garbage on the street and depressing the wages earned by Dominicans.

“There are simply too many Haitians here,” he said on a recent afternoon. “I don’t want to use the word ‘invaded,’ but there are parts of this town that have been completely saturated.”

Painful Necessity​

Back in the capital, Santo Domingo, government officials diplomatically describe the barrier as a painful necessity to insulate one of the region’s most successful economies from one of the hemisphere’s most intractable problems. Haiti has been rocked by widespread gang violence, kidnappings and political instability that has only grown worse since the 2021 murder of President Jovenel Moise.

The wall is also, at some level, a reproach to an international community that has spent billions in Haiti but has been unable or unwilling to alleviate the growing humanitarian crisis.

Dominican Republic border wall

Workers build a border wall to stop the flow of migrants fleeing Haiti. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

Haiti's violence has become “a low intensity civil war” that threatens the entire region, Dominican Republic President Luis Abinader said in a speech to the Organization of American States this month. “We are facing the real possibility that criminal gangs that operate in Haiti will try to threaten our territorial integrity, try to threaten citizen security in our country.”

The wall is highly controversial on both sides of the island of Hispaniola, where animosity and mistrust run deep. Some of the resentment is anchored in nationalistic grievances tied to Haiti’s 1822 invasion and 22-year occupation of its neighbor; along the border, memories still linger of the 1937 massacre that killed an estimated 9,000 to 20,000 Haitians on the orders of Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo. Part of the acrimony is also rooted in racism and xenophobia directed at the first Black republic in the Western Hemisphere. Riverón himself peppers his speech with language — “they have their way of living and we have ours” — that betrays a nativist bent.

‘Unimaginable Consequences’​

In recent weeks, the Dominican capital has seen marches demanding the ouster of Haitians, who protesters blame for crime and soaking up jobs, and newspapers have been choked with fear-filled editorials expressing sentiments very similar to those held by the US immigration hawks that backed Trump’s efforts to seal the US border with Mexico.
Dominican Republic border wall

A Haitian merchant organizes textiles to sell at the Dajabón Border Market. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

“We’re on the cusp of a migratory explosion that will have catastrophic and unimaginable consequences for the American continent, and most directly, for the Dominican Republic,” the Listin Diario, a prominent daily newspaper, wrote Aug. 24.

It’s unclear how many Haitians are in the Dominican Republic. A 2017 census found about half a million Haitians living there, although officials say the true tally could be twice as high. And Haitian workers — both with official papers and the undocumented — are the backbone of the Dominican Republic’s agriculture and construction sectors. In addition, tens of thousands of Haitians make day trips seeking work and supplies.
Dominican Republic border wall

A Specialized Corps of Land Border Security agents directs Haitians entering a border crossing in Dajabón. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

Abinader's top aides don't deny that there are long-standing racist currents in Dominican society pushing for a hardline stance. This can make it difficult, they say, to separate the ugly nativism from the legitimate need for an orderly border.

“There’s a profound racism in this society that has been cultivated since the time of Trujillo, and there’s a deep anti-Haitian sentiment that our own educational system perpetuates,” said Pável Isa Contreras, the country's economy minister. “It’s against Haitians, because they’re seen as Black and poor.”

Despite sharing the island of Hispaniola, the two nations often seem worlds apart.

The Spanish-speaking Dominican Republic saw its economy grow 12% last year and it’s forecast to grow 5% this year, one of the region’s fastest rates. Tourism is setting records, with a surge in arrivals from the US. Exports and foreign direct investment are near all-time highs.
relates to A 102-Mile Wall Is Separating an Island's Haves and Have-Nots

People take part in a protest against the rising gasoline prices in Port-au-Prince, on, Sept. 13. Photographer: Georges Harry Rouzier/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

On the other side of the border, Haiti is in free fall. The Creole-speaking country, which won its independence from France in 1804, has per-capita income one-fifth that of the Dominican Republic. It’s mired in political instability and in the grip of powerful, murderous gangs. Electricity and gasoline are often scarce. Nearly half of Haiti’s 11 million people regularly go hungry, according to the World Food Program.

Amid bloodshed and poverty, tens of thousands of Haitians are internally displaced and the number of people fleeing the country for the Dominican Republic and elsewhere has surged. Deportations in the first half of 2022 already surpassed the total for all of last year.

It’s in this context that the Dominican Republic recently awarded a $32 million contract to the Cofah Consortium to build the first 33 miles of the wall.

‘Not Just a Wall’​

Contreras, the economy minister, says the wall is more than just a brute obstacle to keep Haitians out. “This is not just a fence, it’s not just a wall. It’s part of a larger development package where the fence simply provides security,” he said in an interview. “Our border is terribly porous and very insecure, and we need to deal with that.”

The wall will reduce the illegal immigration, drug running, arms trafficking, cattle theft and contraband that plague both nations, he said. It will also channel migrants, goods and services through legal checkpoints. In addition, the government is earmarking money for a port, a tourism hub and trade projects along the border that Contreras says will generate jobs for both nations.

While dozens of border walls exist worldwide, they’re exceedingly rare in Latin America, a region that has relied on imposing natural barriers such as rivers, mountains or deserts to keep neighbors in check. Fences have been proposed for parts of the Ecuador-Peru frontier, and between Guatemala and Belize, but they’ve never fully materialized. The US-Mexico border wall's various sections total more than 700 miles, the longest in the hemisphere.
Dominican Republic border wall

Dominican Republic’s economy minister says the wall is more than just a brute obstacle to keep Haitians out. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

“Every wall in the world has been a failure — from the Berlin wall to President Donald Trump’s wall” on the US-Mexico border, said Joseph Cherubin, the head of Mosctha, a non-profit that helps Haitian workers in the Dominican Republic. The Dominican wall “is a waste of money meant to satisfy a group of nationalists.”

He argues that only comprehensive economic development in Haiti will stop the tide of migrants.

Dayanna, a 25-year-old Haitian who asked to be identified only by her first name, said the wall won't keep her out. It doesn't matter how high or how long they build it, she said during a recent interview in Dajabón. Almost every day, she walks 40 minutes from her home in the town of Ouanaminthe into the Dominican Republic seeking work, sometimes as an assistant in a clothing store, to buy food for her 7-year-old daughter. She often slips border guards a couple of dollars to look the other way.

“As long as people are hungry, they will keep coming.”
 
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Yourmaninvegas

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I opened it in an incognito browser. Below is the text and some of the photos. Some of the graphs are interactive and couldn't be copied:

A 102-Mile Wall Is Separating an Island's Haves and Have-Nots​

The Dominican Republic is building a barrier to insulate one of the region’s most successful economies from chaos in Haiti.
By Jim Wyss
September 28, 2022 at 12:01 AM GMT-4

Santiago Riverón likes to project the image of rugged, frontier lawman. The mayor of a bustling little outpost along the Dominican Republic’s border with Haiti, he’s partial to white cowboy hats and blue jeans. On the wall of his office hangs a Winchester pump-action shotgun.

It’s mounted just above a flag of the Dominican Republic, and it symbolizes, he says, the same thing as the border wall that’s being built just miles down the road: “our sovereignty.” When finished, the wall, an imposing 13-foot-tall structure built out of concrete and steel, will stretch some 102 miles (164 kilometers), blanketing all but the most inhospitable parts of the frontier. Only one border wall in all of the Americas — the one separating the US from Mexico — is longer.

Dominican Republic border wall

Santiago Riverón Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

Riverón, a burly, graying man of 50, describes his town, Dajabón, as a flash point of the immigration debate that’s raging in societies across the globe — in Poland, Hungary, Chile, the US — after the pandemic sank hundreds of millions of people deeper into poverty in developing countries. Riverón knows that his tiny town wouldn't exist without the cross-border trade with Haiti and yet, in language that borrows from the playbook of Donald Trump and Viktor Orban, he says everything is spinning out of control now. Haitians fleeing the poorest country in the Americas — one beset by the world’s worst levels of food insecurity, an all-but failed government and land made infertile by deforestation and climate change — are, as he sees it, overwhelming local hospitals, strewing garbage on the street and depressing the wages earned by Dominicans.

“There are simply too many Haitians here,” he said on a recent afternoon. “I don’t want to use the word ‘invaded,’ but there are parts of this town that have been completely saturated.”
Sr. Riverón should have just used the word he really means. Since he said invaded that is the way he thinks about it.

Painful Necessity​

Back in the capital, Santo Domingo, government officials diplomatically describe the barrier as a painful necessity to insulate one of the region’s most successful economies from one of the hemisphere’s most intractable problems. Haiti has been rocked by widespread gang violence, kidnappings and political instability that has only grown worse since the 2021 murder of President Jovenel Moise.

The wall is also, at some level, a reproach to an international community that has spent billions in Haiti but has been unable or unwilling to alleviate the growing humanitarian crisis.
This is telling. Why is the international community sitting on its hands during this crisis in Haiti?
Can we all say...vested interests ❓
Dominican Republic border wall

Workers build a border wall to stop the flow of migrants fleeing Haiti. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

Haiti's violence has become “a low intensity civil war” that threatens the entire region, Dominican Republic President Luis Abinader said in a speech to the Organization of American States this month. “We are facing the real possibility that criminal gangs that operate in Haiti will try to threaten our territorial integrity, try to threaten citizen security in our country.”

The wall is highly controversial on both sides of the island of Hispaniola, where animosity and mistrust run deep. Some of the resentment is anchored in nationalistic grievances tied to Haiti’s 1822 invasion and 22-year occupation of its neighbor; along the border, memories still linger of the 1937 massacre that killed an estimated 9,000 to 20,000 Haitians on the orders of Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo. Part of the acrimony is also rooted in racism and xenophobia directed at the first Black republic in the Western Hemisphere. Riverón himself peppers his speech with language — “they have their way of living and we have ours” — that betrays a nativist bent.
History thrown in the face of those who wish to deny it.

‘Unimaginable Consequences’​

In recent weeks, the Dominican capital has seen marches demanding the ouster of Haitians, who protesters blame for crime and soaking up jobs, and newspapers have been choked with fear-filled editorials expressing sentiments very similar to those held by the US immigration hawks that backed Trump’s efforts to seal the US border with Mexico.
Dominican Republic border wall

A Haitian merchant organizes textiles to sell at the Dajabón Border Market. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

“We’re on the cusp of a migratory explosion that will have catastrophic and unimaginable consequences for the American continent, and most directly, for the Dominican Republic,” the Listin Diario, a prominent daily newspaper, wrote Aug. 24.

It’s unclear how many Haitians are in the Dominican Republic. A 2017 census found about half a million Haitians living there, although officials say the true tally could be twice as high. And Haitian workers — both with official papers and the undocumented — are the backbone of the Dominican Republic’s agriculture and construction sectors. In addition, tens of thousands of Haitians make day trips seeking work and supplies.
Dominican Republic border wall

A Specialized Corps of Land Border Security agents directs Haitians entering a border crossing in Dajabón. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

Abinader's top aides don't deny that there are long-standing racist currents in Dominican society pushing for a hardline stance. This can make it difficult, they say, to separate the ugly nativism from the legitimate need for an orderly border.
Truth. Keeping it 💯 right here.
“There’s a profound racism in this society that has been cultivated since the time of Trujillo, and there’s a deep anti-Haitian sentiment that our own educational system perpetuates,” said Pável Isa Contreras, the country's economy minister. “It’s against Haitians, because they’re seen as Black and poor.”
More truth being thrown up into the faces of those up in here who think otherwise.
Despite sharing the island of Hispaniola, the two nations often seem worlds apart.

The Spanish-speaking Dominican Republic saw its economy grow 12% last year and it’s forecast to grow 5% this year, one of the region’s fastest rates. Tourism is setting records, with a surge in arrivals from the US. Exports and foreign direct investment are near all-time highs.
relates to A 102-Mile Wall Is Separating an Island's Haves and Have-Nots's Haves and Have-Nots

People take part in a protest against the rising gasoline prices in Port-au-Prince, on, Sept. 13. Photographer: Georges Harry Rouzier/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

On the other side of the border, Haiti is in free fall. The Creole-speaking country, which won its independence from France in 1804, has per-capita income one-fifth that of the Dominican Republic. It’s mired in political instability and in the grip of powerful, murderous gangs. Electricity and gasoline are often scarce. Nearly half of Haiti’s 11 million people regularly go hungry, according to the World Food Program.

Amid bloodshed and poverty, tens of thousands of Haitians are internally displaced and the number of people fleeing the country for the Dominican Republic and elsewhere has surged. Deportations in the first half of 2022 already surpassed the total for all of last year.

It’s in this context that the Dominican Republic recently awarded a $32 million contract to the Cofah Consortium to build the first 33 miles of the wall.

‘Not Just a Wall’​

Contreras, the economy minister, says the wall is more than just a brute obstacle to keep Haitians out. “This is not just a fence, it’s not just a wall. It’s part of a larger development package where the fence simply provides security,” he said in an interview. “Our border is terribly porous and very insecure, and we need to deal with that.”

The wall will reduce the illegal immigration, drug running, arms trafficking, cattle theft and contraband that plague both nations, he said. It will also channel migrants, goods and services through legal checkpoints. In addition, the government is earmarking money for a port, a tourism hub and trade projects along the border that Contreras says will generate jobs for both nations.

While dozens of border walls exist worldwide, they’re exceedingly rare in Latin America, a region that has relied on imposing natural barriers such as rivers, mountains or deserts to keep neighbors in check. Fences have been proposed for parts of the Ecuador-Peru frontier, and between Guatemala and Belize, but they’ve never fully materialized. The US-Mexico border wall's various sections total more than 700 miles, the longest in the hemisphere.

Dominican Republic’s economy minister says the wall is more than just a brute obstacle to keep Haitians out. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

“Every wall in the world has been a failure — from the Berlin wall to President Donald Trump’s wall” on the US-Mexico border, said Joseph Cherubin, the head of Mosctha, a non-profit that helps Haitian workers in the Dominican Republic. The Dominican wall “is a waste of money meant to satisfy a group of nationalists.”

He argues that only comprehensive economic development in Haiti will stop the tide of migrants.

Dayanna, a 25-year-old Haitian who asked to be identified only by her first name, said the wall won't keep her out. It doesn't matter how high or how long they build it, she said during a recent interview in Dajabón. Almost every day, she walks 40 minutes from her home in the town of Ouanaminthe into the Dominican Republic seeking work, sometimes as an assistant in a clothing store, to buy food for her 7-year-old daughter. She often slips border guards a couple of dollars to look the other way.

“As long as people are hungry, they will keep coming.”
Thank you @AlaPlaya for posting the complete article.
Gives a few people something to chew on.
Let's see if they bite.
😂
 

Big

Well-known member
Apr 24, 2019
3,374
2,449
113
I opened it in an incognito browser. Below is the text and some of the photos. Some of the graphs are interactive and couldn't be copied:

A 102-Mile Wall Is Separating an Island's Haves and Have-Nots​

The Dominican Republic is building a barrier to insulate one of the region’s most successful economies from chaos in Haiti.
By Jim Wyss
September 28, 2022 at 12:01 AM GMT-4

Santiago Riverón likes to project the image of rugged, frontier lawman. The mayor of a bustling little outpost along the Dominican Republic’s border with Haiti, he’s partial to white cowboy hats and blue jeans. On the wall of his office hangs a Winchester pump-action shotgun.

It’s mounted just above a flag of the Dominican Republic, and it symbolizes, he says, the same thing as the border wall that’s being built just miles down the road: “our sovereignty.” When finished, the wall, an imposing 13-foot-tall structure built out of concrete and steel, will stretch some 102 miles (164 kilometers), blanketing all but the most inhospitable parts of the frontier. Only one border wall in all of the Americas — the one separating the US from Mexico — is longer.

Dominican Republic border wall

Santiago Riverón Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

Riverón, a burly, graying man of 50, describes his town, Dajabón, as a flash point of the immigration debate that’s raging in societies across the globe — in Poland, Hungary, Chile, the US — after the pandemic sank hundreds of millions of people deeper into poverty in developing countries. Riverón knows that his tiny town wouldn't exist without the cross-border trade with Haiti and yet, in language that borrows from the playbook of Donald Trump and Viktor Orban, he says everything is spinning out of control now. Haitians fleeing the poorest country in the Americas — one beset by the world’s worst levels of food insecurity, an all-but failed government and land made infertile by deforestation and climate change — are, as he sees it, overwhelming local hospitals, strewing garbage on the street and depressing the wages earned by Dominicans.

“There are simply too many Haitians here,” he said on a recent afternoon. “I don’t want to use the word ‘invaded,’ but there are parts of this town that have been completely saturated.”

Painful Necessity​

Back in the capital, Santo Domingo, government officials diplomatically describe the barrier as a painful necessity to insulate one of the region’s most successful economies from one of the hemisphere’s most intractable problems. Haiti has been rocked by widespread gang violence, kidnappings and political instability that has only grown worse since the 2021 murder of President Jovenel Moise.

The wall is also, at some level, a reproach to an international community that has spent billions in Haiti but has been unable or unwilling to alleviate the growing humanitarian crisis.

Dominican Republic border wall

Workers build a border wall to stop the flow of migrants fleeing Haiti. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

Haiti's violence has become “a low intensity civil war” that threatens the entire region, Dominican Republic President Luis Abinader said in a speech to the Organization of American States this month. “We are facing the real possibility that criminal gangs that operate in Haiti will try to threaten our territorial integrity, try to threaten citizen security in our country.”

The wall is highly controversial on both sides of the island of Hispaniola, where animosity and mistrust run deep. Some of the resentment is anchored in nationalistic grievances tied to Haiti’s 1822 invasion and 22-year occupation of its neighbor; along the border, memories still linger of the 1937 massacre that killed an estimated 9,000 to 20,000 Haitians on the orders of Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo. Part of the acrimony is also rooted in racism and xenophobia directed at the first Black republic in the Western Hemisphere. Riverón himself peppers his speech with language — “they have their way of living and we have ours” — that betrays a nativist bent.

‘Unimaginable Consequences’​

In recent weeks, the Dominican capital has seen marches demanding the ouster of Haitians, who protesters blame for crime and soaking up jobs, and newspapers have been choked with fear-filled editorials expressing sentiments very similar to those held by the US immigration hawks that backed Trump’s efforts to seal the US border with Mexico.
Dominican Republic border wall

A Haitian merchant organizes textiles to sell at the Dajabón Border Market. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

“We’re on the cusp of a migratory explosion that will have catastrophic and unimaginable consequences for the American continent, and most directly, for the Dominican Republic,” the Listin Diario, a prominent daily newspaper, wrote Aug. 24.

It’s unclear how many Haitians are in the Dominican Republic. A 2017 census found about half a million Haitians living there, although officials say the true tally could be twice as high. And Haitian workers — both with official papers and the undocumented — are the backbone of the Dominican Republic’s agriculture and construction sectors. In addition, tens of thousands of Haitians make day trips seeking work and supplies.
Dominican Republic border wall

A Specialized Corps of Land Border Security agents directs Haitians entering a border crossing in Dajabón. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

Abinader's top aides don't deny that there are long-standing racist currents in Dominican society pushing for a hardline stance. This can make it difficult, they say, to separate the ugly nativism from the legitimate need for an orderly border.

“There’s a profound racism in this society that has been cultivated since the time of Trujillo, and there’s a deep anti-Haitian sentiment that our own educational system perpetuates,” said Pável Isa Contreras, the country's economy minister. “It’s against Haitians, because they’re seen as Black and poor.”

Despite sharing the island of Hispaniola, the two nations often seem worlds apart.

The Spanish-speaking Dominican Republic saw its economy grow 12% last year and it’s forecast to grow 5% this year, one of the region’s fastest rates. Tourism is setting records, with a surge in arrivals from the US. Exports and foreign direct investment are near all-time highs.
relates to A 102-Mile Wall Is Separating an Island's Haves and Have-Nots's Haves and Have-Nots

People take part in a protest against the rising gasoline prices in Port-au-Prince, on, Sept. 13. Photographer: Georges Harry Rouzier/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

On the other side of the border, Haiti is in free fall. The Creole-speaking country, which won its independence from France in 1804, has per-capita income one-fifth that of the Dominican Republic. It’s mired in political instability and in the grip of powerful, murderous gangs. Electricity and gasoline are often scarce. Nearly half of Haiti’s 11 million people regularly go hungry, according to the World Food Program.

Amid bloodshed and poverty, tens of thousands of Haitians are internally displaced and the number of people fleeing the country for the Dominican Republic and elsewhere has surged. Deportations in the first half of 2022 already surpassed the total for all of last year.

It’s in this context that the Dominican Republic recently awarded a $32 million contract to the Cofah Consortium to build the first 33 miles of the wall.

‘Not Just a Wall’​

Contreras, the economy minister, says the wall is more than just a brute obstacle to keep Haitians out. “This is not just a fence, it’s not just a wall. It’s part of a larger development package where the fence simply provides security,” he said in an interview. “Our border is terribly porous and very insecure, and we need to deal with that.”

The wall will reduce the illegal immigration, drug running, arms trafficking, cattle theft and contraband that plague both nations, he said. It will also channel migrants, goods and services through legal checkpoints. In addition, the government is earmarking money for a port, a tourism hub and trade projects along the border that Contreras says will generate jobs for both nations.

While dozens of border walls exist worldwide, they’re exceedingly rare in Latin America, a region that has relied on imposing natural barriers such as rivers, mountains or deserts to keep neighbors in check. Fences have been proposed for parts of the Ecuador-Peru frontier, and between Guatemala and Belize, but they’ve never fully materialized. The US-Mexico border wall's various sections total more than 700 miles, the longest in the hemisphere.
Dominican Republic border wall

Dominican Republic’s economy minister says the wall is more than just a brute obstacle to keep Haitians out. Photographer: Tatiana Fernandez Geara/Bloomberg

“Every wall in the world has been a failure — from the Berlin wall to President Donald Trump’s wall” on the US-Mexico border, said Joseph Cherubin, the head of Mosctha, a non-profit that helps Haitian workers in the Dominican Republic. The Dominican wall “is a waste of money meant to satisfy a group of nationalists.”

He argues that only comprehensive economic development in Haiti will stop the tide of migrants.

Dayanna, a 25-year-old Haitian who asked to be identified only by her first name, said the wall won't keep her out. It doesn't matter how high or how long they build it, she said during a recent interview in Dajabón. Almost every day, she walks 40 minutes from her home in the town of Ouanaminthe into the Dominican Republic seeking work, sometimes as an assistant in a clothing store, to buy food for her 7-year-old daughter. She often slips border guards a couple of dollars to look the other way.

“As long as people are hungry, they will keep coming.”
How dare he take pride in his community and country. He should get jail time for expressing his opinion on security and for wearing a western hat
 

D'Arcy (Apostropheman)

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they can't build it fast enough or strong enough
Walls don't work. The Great Wall of China failed to keep out invaders many times. The Berlin Wall didn't work. The previous wall between the US/Mexico leaked like a sieve, and the new version by the previous POTUS was an abject failure. There's no reason to think that a wall between the DR and Haiti will be any more of a deterrent.
 

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Walls don't work. The Great Wall of China failed to keep out invaders many times. The Berlin Wall didn't work. The previous wall between the US/Mexico leaked like a sieve, and the new version by the previous POTUS was an abject failure. There's no reason to think that a wall between the DR and Haiti will be any more of a deterrent.
it's all about mitigation, since they can't use what N.Korea and Cuba use its a useful component.
 

D'Arcy (Apostropheman)

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Interesting comment.
Unfortunately I fail to see your point.
What country in the world is in the position to absorb refugees from an armed conflict ❓
Haitians make up large percentages of the workforce in the DR, at lower wages, in areas that most Dominicans don't wish to work in or are able to avoid. They're an integral part of building and maintaining infrastructure and other essential areas. More of them are needed and will be needed. Unfortunately, they will still be treated as the lowest of the low, discriminated against, and widely derided and undervalued.
 

D'Arcy (Apostropheman)

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well, he is in fact speaking French' so the Haitians won't be able to understand it.
Depending on where one gets their statistics, upwards to 40% of Haitian speak and understand (at least basic or better) French, even if not fully fluent. I've been asking my Haitian friends what languages they speak and how well and what their perception is of how common it is for them, Haitians, to speak and understand French, and about 80% say they speak French. These are all Haitians living in, or that have lived in, the DR.

When they realize that I am Canadian, they bust my chops about not being fluent in French too LOL
 
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Depending on where one gets their statistics, upwards to 40% of Haitian speak and understand (at least basic or better) French, even if not fully fluent. I've been asking my Haitian friends what languages they speak and how well and what their perception is of how common it is for them, Haitians, to speak and understand French, and about 80% say they speak French. These are all Haitians living in, or that have lived in, the DR.

When they realize that I am Canadian, they bust my chops about not being fluent in French too LOL
they don't speak French! Not even passable French, they speak Haitian creole. That is one of their main barriers. As someone who speaks a useless language "Afrikaans" as well, I can tell you their language is a huge obstacle.
 

Yourmaninvegas

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they don't speak French!
This statement is flat out wrong.
And if you chose to disagree with me then quote a source.
Not even passable French, they speak Haitian creole. That is one of their main barriers. As someone who speaks a useless language "Afrikaans" as well, I can tell you their language is a huge obstacle.
My research shows:
10% are bilingual in French and Haitian creole.
90% only speak Haitian creole.

I will agree with you that "language is a huge obstacle" but that applies to anyone who is in a situation where they need to communicate and cannot.

Here is mine:


Only Spanish, DOP and USD will help with border crossing.