Skip to content

An Elite Soccer Team Protests ICE After Their Teammate Is Detained

An Elite Soccer Team Protests ICE After Their Teammate Is Detained
By David Zirin

Donald Trumps immigration policies and the marching orders he has given to Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE) are destroying lives. Many people intuit this in the abstract, but when it hits home it gets very real, very quickly.

Its a reality that recently smacked the members of the elite Bethesda Soccer Club right between the eyes: Their teammate and friend Lizandro Claros Saravia was detained by ICE, along with his older brother Diego. Both were deported on Wednesday.

Lizandro, like many players on the Bethesda Soccer Club, has an athletic scholarship waiting for him at Louisberg College in North Carolina. He is considered one of the top 50 soccer players in the extremely competitive DMV region. He didnt always have access to a car, but he was at every training session, whether he had to take the bus or walk, said Matt Ney, who coached Lizandro for two years on the Bethesda club, according to The Washington Post. He would show up no matter what.

The brothers migrated to this country as children in 2009, fleeing widespread violence in El Salvador. Their status in 2012 again, as child refugees fleeing violence involved voluntary check-ins with immigration officials. But that was ICE under the Obama administration (which was brutal enough). When they went in for a check-in under Trump, they were imprisoned like criminals and immediately scheduled for deportation. Lizandro had a promising future as a soccer player, and Diego worked in a car-repair shop in Baltimore. Neither brother had a criminal record. None of that mattered to ICE.

Their heartless imprisonment and wrenching separation from family and friends speaks to the Trump agenda of using ICE as a tool of psychological and physical violence against non-European immigrant families. Its perfectly in line with the Stephen Miller/Bannon/Gorka wing of the White House, which is obsessed with racial demography and openly contemptuous of the immigrant journey that their own parents and grandparents had to make. This seething trio is a part of Trumps inner circle that has been conspicuously untouched by firings and resignations.

The one satisfaction in this horror story is imagining their mottled faces when learning that Lizandros teammates many of them white, private-school educated, and economically comfortable protested the pending deportations outside the Department of Homeland Security headquarters in northwest Washington this past week. They must have choked on their coffee when reading about young people like Lizandros former teammate St. Albans graduate Foster McCune, who was out there in the summer heat protesting the DHS. McCune has a full athletic ride to Georgetown, one of the top soccer programs in the country. This is about so much more than soccer now, he said to The Washington Post. We want our friend back. People like Foster McCune were standing side by side with Lizandro and Diegos sister, Fatima, who wept during the teams demonstration and held a sign that read: Stop separating families. Let my brothers live their American dream.

The sports world is currently in a flutter over LaDainian Tomlinsons Hall of Fame speech, where he said:

All our ancestors, unless were American Indian, came from another country, another culture. America is the land of opportunity. Lets not slam the door on those who may look different from us. Rather, lets open it wide for those who believe in themselves, that anything is possible, and are willing to compete and take whatever risks are necessary to work hard, to succeed.

Its a lovely sentiment. But journalists and athletes should back their glowing tweets with deeds, and stand with a great young athlete whose life is being destroyed by an amoral administration running an anti-immigration operation straight out of the West Wing. I want to plead with my fellow journalists to report on this story in the name of athletic solidarity and basic human justice. We should fight to get the Claros brothers back to Maryland where they can live their lives in the home of their choice. There is a pressing need for all of us to take a lead from the Bethesda Soccer Club a sentence I never thought Id write and stand up. Those of us who are not threatened by deportation have a duty to our friends and neighbors. In the decades to come, you dont want the shame of telling your grandchildren that you looked the other way.

First published in The Nation

Dave Zirin is the author of Bad Sports: How Owners are Ruining the Games we Love (Scribner). He can be reached at: [email protected]. Read other articles by David, or visit David’s website.

View the original article at

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Posted in Analysis & Review.

Tagged with , , , .

Support #altnews & keep Dark Politricks alive

Remember I told you over 5 years ago that they would be trying to shut down sites and YouTube channels that are not promoting the "Official" view. Well it's happening big time. Peoples Channels get no money from YouTube any more and Google is being fishy with their AdSense giving money for some clicks but not others. The time is here, it's not "Obama's Internet Cut Off Switch" it's "Trumps Sell Everyones Internet Dirty Laundry Garage Sale".

It's not just Google/YouTube defunding altenative chanels (mine was shut), but Facebook is also removing content, shutting pages, profiles and groups and removing funds from #altnews that way as well. I was recently kicked off FB and had a page "unpublished" with no reason given. If you don't know already all Facebooks Private Messages and Secret Groups are still analysed and checked for words related to drugs, sex, war etc against their own TOS. Personally IU know there are undercover Irish police moving from group to group cloning peoples accounts and getting people booted. Worse than that I know people in court at the moment for the content they had on their secret private group. Use Telegrams secret chat mode to chat on, or if you prefer Wickr. Or if you need to, buy a dumb phone with nothing for the NSA to hack into if you are that paranoid. Ensure it has no GPS tracking on it and the battery can be removed. These are usually built for old people to get used to technology storing only a set of numbers to call. However they have no games, applications to install and other ways people can exploit the computer tracking device you carry round with you most of the day.

So if your not supporting this site already which brings you news from the Left to the Right (really the same war mongering bollox) then I could REALLY do with some..

Even if it's just £5 or tick the monthly subscription box and throw a few pound my way each month, it will be much appreciated. Read on to find out why.


Any support to keep this site would be appreciated. You could set up a monthly subscription for £2 like some people do or you could pay a one off donation as a gift.
I am not asking you to pay me for other people's articles, this is a clearing house as well as place to put my own views out into the world. I am asking for help to write more articles like my recent false flag gas attack to get WWIII started in Syria, and Trump away from Putin. Hopefully a few missiles won't mean a WikiLeaks release of that infamous video Trump apparently made in a Russian bedroom with Prostitutes. Also please note that this article was written just an hour after the papers came out, and I always come back and update them.

If you want to read JUST my own articles then use the top menu I have written hundreds of articles for this site and I host numerous amounts of material that has seen me the victim of hacks, DOS plus I have been kicked off multiple hosting companies, free blogging sites, and I have even had threats to cease and desist from the US armed forces. Therefore I have to pay for my own server which is NOT cheap. The more people who read these article on this site the more it costs me so some support would be much appreciated.

I have backups of removed reports shown, then taken down after pressure, that show collusion between nations and the media. I have the full redacted 28/29 pages from the 9.11 commission on the site which seems to have been forgotten about as we help Saudi Arabia bomb Yemeni kids hiding in the rubble with white phosphorus, an illegal weaapon. One that the Israeli's even used when they bombed the UN compound in Gaza during Operation Cast Lead. We complain about Syrian troops (US Controlled ISIS) using chemical weapons to kill "beautiful babies". I suppose all those babies we kill in Iraq, Yemen, Somalia and Syria are just not beautiful enough for Trumps beautiful baby ratio. Plus we kill about 100 times as many as ISIS or the Syrian army have managed by a factor of about 1000 to 1.

I also have a backup of the FOX News series that looked into Israeli connections to 9.11. Obviously FOX removed that as soon as AIPAC, ADL and the rest of the Hasbra brigade protested.

I also have a copy of the the original Liberal Democrats Freedom Bill which was quickly and quietly removed from their site once they enacted and replaced with some watered down rubbish instead once they got into power. No change to police tactics, protesting or our unfair extradition treaty with the USA but we did get a stop to being clamped on private land instead of the mny great ideas in the original.

So ANY support to keep this site running would be much appreciated! I don't have much money after leaving my job and it is a choice between shutting the server or selling the domain or paying a lot of money just so I can show this material.

Material like the FSB Bombings that put Putin in power or the Google no 1 spot when you search for protecting yourself from UK Police with "how to give a no comment interview". If you see any adverts that interest you then please visit them as it helps me without you even needing to give me any money. A few clicks per visit is all it takes to help keep the servers running and tag any tweets with alternative news from the mainstream with the #altnews hashtag I created to keep it alive!

However if you don't want to use the very obvious and cost free ways (to you) to help the site and keep me writing for it then please consider making a small donation. Especially if you have a few quid sitting in your PayPal account doing nothing useful. Why not do a monthly subscription for less money instead. Will you really notice £5 a month?

0 Responses

Stay in touch with the conversation, subscribe to the RSS feed for comments on this post.

Some HTML is OK

or, reply to this post via trackback.