After Immigrant Raid, Iowans Ask Why

Following the largest single-site raid in U.S. history, the legal residents of Postville rally around their illegal neighbors

Jessica Reilly / Telegraph Herald / AP

Two women attend a press conference at Saint Bridget Parish in Postville, Iowa.

In this small northeastern Iowan town surrounded by newly planted cornfields, a middle-aged white woman walks into the local Guatemalan restaurant with her arm around a Hispanic child who is sobbing because she can't find her mother. After conferring with a restaurant worker, the woman takes the child nearby to St. Bridget's, a small 1970s-era brick Catholic church on a quiet tree-lined street that has become command central for what people in this community of 2,273 describe as a "disaster relief response."

In the aftermath of the nation's largest single-site immigration raid — a May 12 raid of...

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