Alex Gourevitch

Alex Gourevitch is currently a graduate student at Columbia University studying international relations and a former American Prospect writing fellow.

Recent Articles

Alien Nation

I n the midst of the Washington-area sniper attacks last fall, Montgomery County (Md.) Police Chief Charles Moose was forced to make an unusual televised appeal to immigrants. "Perhaps some of our immigrant community members feel like there would be some problem for them because of their status ... if they come forward," Moose said. "We hope that is not the case, but if that is the case, we want to stress that that is not our interest in this matter." He was responding to an incident the previous day in which two immigrants had been apprehended for questioning in the sniper case, cleared but then dumped in deportation proceedings. What was odd was that Moose had to make the appeal at all. It is a policy in local and state police departments across the country not to enforce civil-immigration law because they want immigrants to be forthcoming about crimes -- such as homicide. It is even the official legal opinion of the U.S. Department of Justice that local and state police do not have...

The Whole Lott

Incoming Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.) may well be a racist, but it's time to put this controversy into perspective before Republicans wash their hands of him and end up looking tough on race. With Sen. Don Nickles (R-Okla.), the party's minority whip, calling for new leadership, President Bush rebuking Lott publicly and conservative media outlets such as The Wall Street Journal asking for his resignation, you have to wonder if Republicans are trying to use Lott as a scapegoat to distract the public from their own sorry record on civil rights. You also have to wonder whether the Democrats will have the courage to turn a piece of political theater into a serious discussion of race and equality. Lott may have an unhealthy interest in the Confederacy, but his stance on civil rights is indistinguishable from that of other conservative Republicans -- and just as disturbing. Consider how the NAACP rated Lott and his likely successors, Nickles and Sens. Bill Frist (R-Tenn.),...

Lula Hoop

Standing in the lobby of the National Press Club around noon yesterday, one could hear the standard quantity of rapid-fire chatter and Capitol Hill buzz. Everyone wore suits, yammered into cell phones and smoked cigarettes with an impatience specific to Washington. The only deviation from the norm was that most of the people were speaking Portuguese: Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was about to arrive for his first visit to the United States since being elected president of Brazil, and everyone was waiting to hear what the newly minted leader of Latin America's largest economy would say. This was an unprecedented visit -- never before had a Brazilian president-elect visited the United States. Lula, as the socialist-cum-populist-nationalist is widely known, is perhaps the only president in the Americas receiving as much attention these days as George W. Bush. Many see him as the harbinger of a leftist resurgence in Latin America. He was introduced Lula yesterday as a representative figure of...

Lula's Rules

J ust when it was looking as if the Bush administration would stamp its economic model on the entire Western Hemisphere, a credible challenge has emerged. South America's largest and most self-reliant economy is very likely to elect a popular moderate leftist. Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva of the Workers Party in Brazil has campaigned vigorously against President George W. Bush's proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA). First imagined by Ronald Reagan, it would essentially extend the North American Free Trade Agreement from the Arctic Circle to Tierra del Fuego. With a crucial negotiating session co-chaired by the United States and Brazil in Quito, Ecuador, set for just after Brazil's Oct. 27 runoff elections, and negotiations scheduled to continue until January 2005, the FTAA will not be the cakewalk the United States wants. But the United States has substantial leverage to impose its vision -- or impose heavy costs on those who reject it. The International Monetary Fund, working...

The Victimhood

T he police were disciplined; the protesters were organic. The police had one purpose; the protesters had many. The police said little and did much; the protesters said much -- and did little. The day began earlier for the policemen than for the protesters. Arriving as early as 4 a.m. -- from Boston and Virginia and Chicago and elsewhere -- they formed a perimeter around the International Monetary Fund and World Bank stretching from 15th to 20th streets and from Constitution Avenue to I Street. By 9:30 a.m. they looked bored ("Where are they at?" asked a Baltimore policeman) and hungry ("We haven't been told much; we haven't even been told what time lunch is. We gotta eat!" said a D.C. Metro policewoman). Another Baltimore policeman offered me five bucks to buy him a cheeseburger. I declined. Nerves and fatigue occasionally showed through: "Have a good night sir," said the D.C. Metro policewoman as I walked away. It was 10 a.m. And not a protestor to be seen. But they were there,...

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