Many of these migrants were rejected for asylum based on the truths they told during their first attempt, and the U.N. wants to help them conjure up "repressed memories," meaning fake memories, that will help them to qualify in their second attempt.
Made-up stories about government persecution or other hardships improve a migrant's changes of being granted entry into the U.S., it turns out. And many of them do not know about this when first applying, which is where the U.N.-funded psychological brainwashing techniques come into play.
"Thousands apparently have gone the recovered memory route after they were rejected for asylum because they told Mexican immigration authorities they just wanted to go to the United States to make money – an ineligible claim, unlike official government persecution," writes Todd Bensman for the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS).
"With their newfound memories of more eligible claims, the immigrants get asylum (a term many use interchangeably with refugee status) and Mexican residency cards, which many then promptly use to pass through Mexico and make illegal entry over the American border."
According to Enrique Vidal, coordinator for the Fray Matias de Cordoba human rights center, the U.N. is paying psychologists to manipulate migrants into conjuring up "repressed" memories of torture, persecution and human rights violations to reverse denials on appeal. (Related: Some of these "migrants" bring disease with them as they enter the U.S.)
"The most common mistake migrants make during interviews ... is that they are saying that they are suffering economic hardship," Vidal is quoted as saying. "It's not one of the criteria for refugee status."
"That may cover up one of the true reasons why they are coming. They need psychological help so they can remember the situation they experienced."
When asked if recovering asylum-qualifying memories for better interview outcomes is the main goal of the U.N.-backed program, Vidal responded with a simple yes, adding that this is accomplished "through the psychological help we give them."
This controversial program has technically been taking place for many years under the name "recovered memory therapy." Critics in academia have rightfully pointed out that it amounts to pseudoscience because too often false memories are implanted into people's minds.
According to Vidal, employing it results in a 90 percent approval rate, which is why it remains "the most important part of the process," he says.
"That's when the Mexican authorities listen to the motives of why they left their country. And those motives have to be according to international conventions."
What makes the technique even more questionable is the fact that trained lawyers actually hold classes beforehand to make sure the immigrants fully understand the asylum-winning requirements before they interview. These migrants are being groomed, in other words, to say what they need to say in order to gain relatively easy entry into the country.
"For example, if they have an economic need, that's not necessarily one of the requirements," Vidal admits. "However, once we do our interview with them, we find out they did suffer some type of violence or persecution or anything that qualifies as refugees, we tell them to emphasize those."
In 2019, Vidal's group's lawyers and psychologists successfully got 3,000 migrants approved as refugees. Some 19,000 that same year also received classroom training in how to successfully apply.
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