Minister of Foreign Affairs Luis Ernesto Derbez discussed Mexico’s relationship with the United States after 9/11, on Nov. 17 in the Campus Center Ballroom.
Derbez spoke to an audience of more than 50 students and faculty before being presented the Model United Nations Speaker of the Year award.
Associate Professor of Political Science Juli Minoves-Triquell introduced Derbez and touched on his past success improving the relationship between Mexico and the rest of Latin America.
“He’s a great person to talk to,” Minoves-Triquell said. “He’s been a reliable friend to me.”
Derbez began by giving background on 9/11.
“A group of people were able to feel the insecurity of a country,” Derbez said. “There used to be an idea that U.S. soil was safe until then. It changed everyone’s perspective on the country.”
He explained how the Afghanistan government was blamed as a result of the Bush administration’s lack of preparation. This sparked the Afghanistan invasion.
Derbez immediately drew a comparison to the rise of Hitler due to forcing Germany to pay for the damage caused by World War I.
The United States’ reaction to 9/11 had a negative impact on the migration of Mexican citizens to the United States.
“You are afraid of immigrants and globalization because it is mining your standard of living,” Derbez said.
As a result of how politicians managed Mexico, Derbez concluded his speech by emphasizing the importance of Mexican immigration to the United States.
“They’re not coming because they want to come, they’re coming because they need to come,” Derbez said.
Being of Mexican descent, senior political science major Mariela Martinez explained the significance of what Derbez spoke about.
“He’s such a genuine and honest individual,” Martinez said. “He gave us an insight perspective on issues that had been misinterpreted and misunderstood for so long.”
Joshua Bay can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.