On Saturday, as many Texans woke up to learn of the extent of damage and devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey, President Donald Trump tweeted about the wall and Mexico. “With Mexico being one of the highest crime Nations in the world, we must have THE WALL,” he wrote. “Mexico will pay for it through reimbursement/other.” A few hours later, Mexico reiterated that it would not pay for the wall, and instead offered Texas help with its recovery efforts, because it’s what “good neighbors should always do in trying times.” Days later, Trump has yet to acknowledge what Mexico said, even as Texas’ Gov. Greg Abbott has accepted the aid.
Abbott made the announcement on Wednesday. “Yes, I have, and we are,” Abbott said after journalists asked him about the offer, according to The Dallas Morning News. “We have a list of aid and assistance that they have offered to provide that we are accepting.” Mexico will send boats, vehicles, food, and medical supplies to Texas in the next few days.
In 2005, when Hurricane Katrina struck Louisiana, the Mexican government sent aid to the US for the first time ever. According to CBS, then-President Vicente Fox sent Mexican troops onto US soil for the first time since the Mexican-American War in 1846. Over the course of three weeks, the country provided 170,000 meals, distributed more than 184,000 tons of supplies, and administered more than 500 medical consultations. Members of the Mexican senate criticized Fox for not seeking their approval before providing aid to the US, but he stated that it wasn’t necessary for aid missions.
In the almost week since Mexico said it stood in solidarity with Texas, Trump has yet to issue a statement. However, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has also thanked the Latin American country. According to the BBC, he said, “It’s very generous of the government of Mexico to offer their help at this very, very challenging time for our citizens down in Texas and now moving towards the border of Louisiana as well.”