Posted on January 9, 2024

A Special Relationship: Comparing US and UK Immigration

Mark Gullick, American Renaissance, January 9, 2024

Subscribe to future audio versions of AmRen articles here.

The phrase “special relationship” to describe the links between the US and the UK came to prominence in the 1980s, when the countries’ heads of government were Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher. The expression was in fact coined by Winston Churchill in the 1940s but resonated once again due to the obvious historical links between the two nations at a time of relative economic prosperity.

Now, in more precarious times, the US and the UK have more in common than a mutual language and shared values: Both have an escalating illegal immigration crisis. In the US, Donald Trump apparently represents the only possible antidote, while neither of the two main British parties are likely to stem the flow of illegal and undocumented immigrants.

The American invasion comes via Latin America, although the various caravans and flotillas are becoming increasingly diverse, with ethnicities from outside the Americas growing in number both at the southern border and by sea from Cuba and Haiti. Chinese migrants are showing up in Florida and the southwestern border states, and I have seen waiting rooms crowded with African blacks at the border between Costa Rica and Nicaragua.

Britain’s influx comprises migrants who have travelled across Europe — mostly Muslims from the Middle East and, increasingly, Africa, who cross from Tunisia to the tiny Italian island of Lampedusa. From there, they are processed in Sicily and proceed to mainland Italy. Italian prime minister Georgia Meloni was elected on an anti-immigration ticket but has been unable to secure her country’s borders. A large number of those migrants have no interest in Europe except as a waystation, and are intent on getting to Britain — specifically England.

While migrants from Latin America can wade across the Rio Grande into the land of the free, migrants into England must cross the somewhat deeper waters of the English Channel, often on motorized dinghies. There was a time when England’s maritime defense was the greatest in the world. Now, the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI), whose remit is supposed to be to save those in peril at sea, has become a taxi service for illegal immigrants.

Migrants land on a beach in Dungeness, Britain on Nov. 24, 2021. (Credit Image: © Steve Finn/Xinhua via ZUMA Press)

The French coastal authorities make no attempt to prevent the dinghies from leaving their shores. Instead, they escort them into English waters, and the RNLI does the rest. The migrants typically arrive in Kent, on the south English coast. Although the migrants keep their documentation to get across Europe, they ditch it once on the water. Doing so prevents British authorities from determining their country of origin and thus makes them more difficult to remove. If the English Channel were trawled tomorrow, more passports and cellphones would be netted than fish. Similarly, illegal migrants coming into the United States often discard their documents at the border as well.

This constant stream of undocumented migrants means that neither nation really knows if it has let the “right” ones in. As in America, the UK suffers from what the US Border Patrol calls “gotaways” — those illegals who cross the border or make landfall on the coast and simply vanish. Donald Trump famously charged that Latin America was not sending its best to the US. In Britain, though Muslim countries may well be sending their “best,” these arrivistes are not the best at useful occupations, although they might well be their countries’ best terrorists and drug dealers.

As for terrorism, a Syrian terror cell was recently on the run in Britain, while drug dealing is widespread among Albanian migrants. Europe’s “white Muslims” — as Albanians are called — are not coming to open smoothie franchises or work in care homes; they are coming to deal cocaine in London.

There is probably significant ideological unity among America’s new arrivals, many of whom share a common Latin identity as defined by such groups as La Raza. In the UK, however, although Muslims seem to be a united, monolithic bloc in the same way as Catholic Hispanics, Islam is fiercely sectarian, and the West is importing internecine warfare as well as the natural antipathy many Muslims have toward Western culture.

Although both countries must inevitably reach a demographic tipping point, that will impact Britain long before it does the US. Mark Twain advised everyone to buy land because they have stopped making it, and physical space is obviously finite. It is especially limited in Britain, which currently receives a million immigrants a year, both legal and illegal, with around half a million people leaving (can anyone blame them?) for a net increase of half a million. This is expected to rise to an annual figure of 700,000 — a 1 percent yearly increase in the UK population. Great Britain is already one of Europe’s most overcrowded land masses, with a current population officially at 68 million.

Figures from 2018 ranking the world’s roughly 200 countries by population density place the United Kingdom in thirty-fourth place, with the US way down the list at 148. Americans seem to have a talent for turning apparently uninhabitable land into livable space, and there is a lot more of that land. Give a bunch of Arabs a desert and you’ll probably end up with a desert. Leave a desert in the hands of Americans and it’s “Viva Las Vegas!”

The crises in migrant accommodation have developed at a different pace in the US than in the UK. New York City has suddenly and vocally woken up to the influx, while Britain has been placing migrants in high-end hotels for some time. Some American cities have — in British slang — “made a rod for their own backs” by proclaiming themselves “sanctuary cities,” perhaps never expecting it was a pledge they would have to honor. In Britain, London’s Muslim mayor Sadiq Khan has made it clear that he still wants more migrants.

The problem in Britain is not simply the immigrants themselves and the stress they place on public services and infrastructure. It is also the lawyers who obstruct every attempt to remove the illegals once they are in the UK. Despite the Brexit vote of 2016, the UK remains shackled to the European Convention on Human Rights, which is making it almost impossible to deport immigrants regardless of any crimes they may have committed aside from their original illegal entry. The latest of many cases saw a Somalian gang-rapist finally deported after five years. He was taken off his original deportation flight after sympathetic passengers protested as the plane was taking off. The process of removing this one criminal is estimated to have cost the British taxpayer £1 million (around $1.25 million).

Politicians like to distract the media, and by extension the public, in the same way as magicians gesture with one hand while producing or hiding a card or coin with the other. In Britain, the latest distraction is Rwanda, which agreed to take immigrants waiting for UK asylum decisions in return for money. This was never a good deal, as the government downplayed the fact that for every immigrant sent to Rwanda, a Rwandan would come to the UK, like some bizarre hostage exchange. What this could mean is Rwanda will empty its jails and hospitals and send them to Britain. To date, though, there have been no deportations to Rwanda due to legal obstructions. Rwanda, however, still got the money.

Governments give themselves away when they so blatantly fail to protect their own borders. America is importing fentanyl mules, cartel desperadoes, and any other criminal-minded migrant who can jump on a caravan, while Britain is allowing Muslims who despise Western freedoms to land at the seaside like day-trippers and then vanish. Both countries have native populations who will be pushed only so far. If the governments of both our nations wanted to stoke civil strife, it is difficult to see what they would be doing differently.