The abuse of Asian workers in the oil-rich Gulf countries, the trafficking of undocumented latinos at the US border, the exploitation of African sans papiers in France and the attacks on Sub-Saharan farmhands by the mob in Italy. All these events show how migrants, especially those without legal documents, can be an easy target for violence and discrimination, often with impunity. At least, until they decide to fight back.
In this original, accessible book, Vittorio Longhi, a journalist who specialises in international labour matters, describes an emerging phenomenon of social conflict, in which migrants are not conceived as passive victims of exploitation. Instead they are portrayed as conscious, vital social actors who are determined to organise and claim better rights.
With a global perspective, The immigrant war highlights the 'struggle for human rights, citizenship and equality', in the context of a policy vacuum within the international community towards migration. He demonstrates how these emerging conflicts can break the chain of exploitation and contribute to rethinking failing migration policies and the role of migrants in contemporary societies.
The book will be of interest to labour and migration specialists, students of social sciences, trade unionists and human rights activists, as well as a general readership interested in migration.
Vittorio Longhi is the Editor of the news and opinion website "Equal Times, News at Work". He specialises in international labour rights and policies and has held training courses for media professionals on behalf of the International Labour Organisation (ILO). He is also a contributor and blogger for the Italian daily La Repubblica and UK's The Guardian. He holds a Degree in Economic Sociology (University of Urbino, Italy) and a Masters in Society and the New Media (University of Leicester, UK).
Introduction: The war against immigrants; In the Persian Gulf; In the United States; In France; In Italy; Rethinking migration.
"An extraordinary account in its up-front questioning of how our states and societies construct the immigrant and erase the memory of our own migrant origins. This book shows us how laws have become blunt instruments for bland evasions of our obligations." Saskia Sassen, Columbia University, author of Territory, Authority, Rights
"The Immigrant War is one of the most insightful books ever written on global migration patterns and their consequences from a humane perspective. A must read by International journalist Vittorio Longhi." Devendra Dhungana, Facebook comment
"Longhi expertly combines scholarly analysis with sharp reporting, drawing on his detailed knowledge of the global labour movement and trade unionist activism. The material is admirably well-organized and well-assembled. I know of no other book like this." Matt Carr, journalist
"Here is a book which truly takes forward the struggle for social justice. Vittorio Longhi's comprehensive and vivid study reveals a growing international movement that gets negligible coverage in the mainstream press but yet which requires a radical rethink of dominant approaches to immigration, development and democracy. 'The immigrant war' introduces us to a new generation of migrants who will shape the world in aftermath of neo-liberalism." Hilary Wainwright, Transnational Institute, and co-editor of Red Pepper