Whistleblower Alleges ICE Sterilizes Immigrant Women (Video)

In just the past year and a half, the Trump administration’s war on immigrants has perpetrated the following crimes against humanity:

But that’s far from all.

In July, ICE threatened to deport international university students enrolled in online classes, forcing many of them to opt for in-person instruction amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Licensed Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) psychotherapists are violating migrant children’s trust by submitting confidential session notes to ICE, which then uses the information against the children in immigration court to deny them asylum status and deport them.

Several asylum seekers have died in CBP custody.

Last January, an Office of Inspector General (OIG) report revealed not only did the U.S. government separate thousands more children from their parents than previously thought; it was separating them before authorities admitted a child separation policy was in place.

Two years ago we learned about refugee children in U.S. custody were being injected with psychotropic drugs.

Don’t forget the tear gas attack Donald Trump defended as a “minor form” of torture.

But when we hear about “medical experiments,” is anyone able to resist the connotation to Doctor Mengele performing sadistic procedures on concentration camp prisoners during the Holocaust, or to the American eugenics program?

Well, we might be guilty of it too now.

According to whistleblower, nurse, Dawn Wooten, immigrants detained in the private prison company LaSalle Corrections-owned Irwin County detention center in Georgia are being subjected to deplorable conditions and treatment, including “jarring medical neglect.”

Possibly the most horrific complaint is about Dr. Mahendra Amin–the “uterus collector”— who, according to Wooten, performed at least 60 unnecessary hysterectomies on mostly Spanish-speaking women.

Wooten and four lawyers representing clients claim immigrant women are regularly sent to to Amin, who left them bruised.

Wooten said:

“Everybody he sees has a hysterectomy–just about everybody. That’s his specialty, he’s the uterus collector. Everybody’s uterus cannot be that bad.”

One woman subjected to the procedure reported not being properly anesthetized and overheard the doctor state he accidently removed the wrong ovary, rendering her infertile.

Another saw the doctor to have a cyst removed.

He performed a hysterectomy instead.

One detainee claimed:

“When I met all these women who had had surgeries, I thought this was like an experimental concentration camp. It was like they’re experimenting with our bodies.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, calling for an investigation, explained:

“If true, the appalling conditions described in the whistleblower complaint–including allegations of mass hysterectomies being performed on vulnerable immigrant women–are a staggering abuse of human rights.”

More than 160 Democrat signatories to a letter addressed to the DHS inspector general, Joseph Cuffari, state:

 “These reports hearken back to a dark time in US history in which 32 states passed eugenic-sterilization laws, resulting in the sterilization of between 60 and 70 thousand people in the early 1900s. The reports of mass hysterectomies cause grave concern for the violation of the bodily autonomy and reproductive rights of detained people. Everyone, regardless of their immigration status, their language, or their incarceration deserves to control their own reproductive choices, and make informed choices about their bodies.”

Congressional Hispanic Caucus chairman, Rep. Joaquín Castro, extolled Wooten’s “courageous choice to speak up,” adding “these horrors must not remain hidden.”

He commented:

“The American people need to know exactly why and under what conditions that vulnerable women in Ice custody underwent hysterectomies. Were Trump administration officials aware of any coerced procedures, and if so, what actions did they take, if any, to stop this abuse? Congress is already examining this disturbing complaint, and the DHS inspector general must immediately investigate these serious allegations by conducting thorough on-the-ground inspections and not relying on statements from Ice agents and private contractors.”

In a letter to the Dept. of Homeland Security (DHS) Office of Inspector General, urging the agency to “immediately conduct a thorough in-person investigation,” Sen. Cory Booker stated:

“This whistleblower complaint is stunning and, if true, paints a disturbing picture at the Irwin county detention center…Given the serious nature of the complaint, I urge your office to immediately conduct a thorough in-person investigation of the Irwin county detention center.”

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez added:

“It’s astounding that after a massive family separation operation, mass sexual assault of detainees, trapping immigrants in COVID-infected detention centers, and now reports of mass hysterectomies (which the US has done before), abolishing ICE is controversial. Where’s the line?”

NBC contacted Dr. Amin’s office.

The individual who answered hung up.

Human rights group Project South is one group to have filed a report against the Irwin facility in 2017 regarding its unsanitary conditions, inedible food, and refusal of detainees’ medical care.

But things have only gotten worse since the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak.

Azadeh Shahshahani, Project South human rights attorney, explained:

“There is no social distancing possible in a detention center. We are calling for people to be freed immediately, and we have been calling for this facility to be shut down for a long time.”

Shahshahani said the groups also plan to submit its complaint documents to Congress and the United Nations, which defines “imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group” as an act of genocide, an international law crime.

Shahshahani added the Irwin facility is not the only malefactor; detainees confined to the Stewart detention center, also in Georgia, have complained of similar abuse.

This is serious.

ICE recently graduated its first “Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Citizens Academy” class.

In June, shortly after protests over the hyper-militarization of America’s police forces in the wake of the Minneapolis police murder of George Floyd began erupting, anonymous, unidentifiable vigilantes started showing up to intimidate and instigate violence toward peaceful protesters.

As many are now reporting, we are slipping rapidly into fascism.

No matter how we look at it, we have become “that country.”

If this is not enough of an incentive to get out the vote in a month and a half, what is?

Image credit: citizentruth.org

Ted Millar is writer and teacher. His work has been featured in myriad literary journals, including Better Than Starbucks, The Broke Bohemian, Straight Forward Poetry, Caesura, Circle Show, Cactus Heart, Third Wednesday, and The Voices Project. He is also a contributor to The Left Place blog on Substack, and Medium.