Extreme Fretting over Refugee Ban
Which part of “extreme vetting” did liberals who lost the 2016 election not understand? President Trump is doing exactly what he said he would do during the campaign -- a concept foreign to liberals -- namely, suspend immigration from countries riddled with terrorist activity. Protests have erupted as a handful of travelers from these countries have been detained at airports,
It was inevitable due to timing that there would be travelers caught en route, including diabetic grandmothers and former translators who worked with U.S. forces in Iraq caught in the transition as Trump’s executive orders was implemented. But these media “horror” stories have obscured an essential fact. No one who is not an American citizen has a right, emphasis on the word “right,” to come here. It is the right of sovereign nations to control their borders in the manner they see fit based on the criteria their national interest demands. As the Department of Homeland Security stated clearly in a statement on the ban’s implementation:
"The Department of Homeland Security will continue to enforce all of President Trump's executive orders in a manner that ensures the safety and security of the American people," the department said in an early morning statement.
"President Trump's executive orders remain in place -- prohibited travel will remain prohibited, and the U.S. government retains its right to revoke visas at any time if required for national security or public safety," the statement continued. "President Trump's executive order affects a minor portion of international travelers, and is a first step towards reestablishing control over America's borders and national security."…
"No foreign national in a foreign land, without ties to the United States, has any unfettered right to demand entry into the United States or to demand immigration benefits in the United States," the department said.
Which part of that do the protestors at the airports not understand? The media hysteria surrounding the ban’s implementation is seen in a BBC news story about how a transgendered Iraqi woman had her dreams shattered by Trump’s executive order. Excuse me, but President Trump was not elected to address the concerns of transgendered Iraqi women. He was elected to protect American citizens and their nation from terrorism.
Critics insist on describing the refugee ban as a “Muslim ban”. In truth, it is a geographic ban. So how were the seven countries Trump suspended immigration from selected? They were selected based on a law President Obama himself signed.
According to the draft copy of Trump's executive order, the countries whose citizens are barred entirely from entering the United States is based on a bill that Obama signed into law in December 2015.
Obama signed the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act as part of an omnibus spending bill. The legislation restricted access to the Visa Waiver Program, which allows citizens from 38 countries who are visiting the United States for less than 90 days to enter without a visa.
Though outside groups such as the American Civil Liberties Union and NIAC Action -- the sister organization of the National Iranian American Council -- opposed the act, the bipartisan bill passed through Congress with little pushback.
At the initial signing of the restrictions, foreigners who would normally be deemed eligible for a visa waiver were denied if they had visited Iran, Syria, Sudan or Iraq in the past five years or held dual citizenship from one of those countries.
In February 2016, the Obama administration added Libya, Somali and Yemen to the list of countries one could not have visited -- but allowed dual citizens of those countries who had not traveled there access to the Visa Waiver Program. Dual citizens of Syria, Sudan, Iraq and Iran are still ineligible, however.
Critics also forget how the Obama administration stopped processing refugees from Iraq for six month in 2011. Was that a ban on Muslim immigration? As the Federalist reminds us:
Although the Obama administration currently refuses to temporarily pause its Syrian refugee resettlement program in the United States, the State Department in 2011 stopped processing Iraq refugee requests for six months after the Federal Bureau of Investigation uncovered evidence that several dozen terrorists from Iraq had infiltrated the United States via the refugee program. …
After two terrorists were discovered in Bowling Green, Kentucky, in 2009, the FBI began reviewing reams of evidence taken from improvised explosive devices (IEDs) that had been used against American troops in Iraq. Federal investigators then tried to match fingerprints from those bombs to the fingerprints of individuals who had recently entered the United States as refugees…
This is the president who said in a tweet: “Slamming the door in the face of refugees would betray our deepest values. That's not who we are.” Yet that is what he did. And at the time, with perfectly good reason. Who we are is a nation under attack by radical Islamic terrorists. That is why Obama did what he did and why Trump is keeping his campaign promise.
Terrorists hiding amongst refugees? Where have we seen this before? Oh, yeah, among the unrestricted hordes admitted into Europe to bomb and kill in France, Belgium, Germany, and Turkey. We have admitted terrorists on student visas and on marriage waiver visas, as in San Bernadino.
The critics who speak of a Muslim ban are the same people who ignored the ongoing slaughter of Syrian and Iraqi Christians and Yazidis by ISIS. As Investor’s Business Daily editorialized on the slaughter of Christians:
The fanatical Islamist group torches an 1,800-year-old church built before the founding of Islam and forces the Christian residents of Mosul to convert, pay a tax, leave or face execution. This is what the West faces.
'From Boston to Zanzibar, there's a worldwide war on Christianity," Kentucky Republican Sen. Rand Paul said at the Values Voters Summit last October, an annual conservative gathering.
The number and intensity of attacks was so great, he said, that it's "almost as if we lived in the Middle Ages."
That was an era when the swords of Islam had conquered much of the Middle East and North Africa and threatened the citadels of Christian Europe -- an era to which Islamist terror groups like the Taliban, Nigeria's Boko Haram and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) seem eager to return….
Thousands of Christians in Mosul began fleeing the city after ISIL issued an ultimatum on Friday to Iraqi Christians living in Mosul that by Saturday at noon (5 a.m. ET), they must convert to Islam, pay a fine or face "death by the sword."
Chaldean Catholic patriarch Louis Sako, who heads Iraq's largest Christian community, told Agence France-Presse: "Christian families are on their way to Dohuk and Arbil (in Kurdistan). For the first time in the history of Iraq, Mosul is now empty of Christians."
Yet despite this ongoing slaughter of Christians, among the refugees the Obama administration sought to admit, less than one percent were Christians: As Fox News reported:
The Obama administration hit its goal this week of admitting 10,000 Syrian refugees -- yet only a fraction of a percent are Christians, stoking criticism that officials are not doing enough to address their plight in the Middle East.
Of the 10,801 refugees accepted in fiscal 2016 from the war-torn country, 56 are Christians, or .5 percent.
Was this a ban on admitting Christians? We are asked to show compassion for potential jihadis but not for potential victims who publicly express their fear of unrestricted admission of refugees from hotbeds of terror? The protestors are wrong that such jihadists have a “right” to be here. The president under the Constitution has authority over immigration policy and the Constitution is not a suicide pact. Those who go abroad to be radicalized should not be readmitted. Those who believe Sharia law trumps the Constitution should not be allowed in, period. Give us your poor huddled masses yearning to breathe free, but not those desiring to end our way of life. That is what extreme vetting is all about.
Daniel John Sobieski is a freelance writer whose pieces have appeared in Investor’s Business Daily, Human Events, Reason Magazine and the Chicago Sun-Times, among other publications.