U.S. Army soldiers with the 889th Engineering Support Company, lay concertina wire along the Gateway International Bridge in Brownsville, Texas, November 2018.
U.S. Air Force Handout via REUTERS

On the Gateway to the Americas International Bridge on November 14, U.S. President Donald Trump’s new asylum policy had already begun to take effect. Laura, a mother of two from Nicaragua, stood on the pavement over the Rio Grande between Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, and Laredo, Texas, and pulled a knit hat tight over her ears. The temperature had dropped below freezing the night before, and she and her children had been waiting there, suspended between two countries, for three days.

“They said that they were going to let us through but that it’s full inside,” she said as

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