Oh, the (false) outrage!

I’ve been alternately amused and angered by the reaction of the mainstream media and many left-wing and progressive sources to President Trump’s executive order barring refugees from seven countries from admission to the USA for 90 days.  It’s not a permanent ban – it’s temporary, to ensure that vetting and screening procedures are adequate, and if necessary improved – but to judge by the shrieks of horror and outrage, anyone would think the President had condemned those refugees to death (if they are ‘refugees’ at all, of course).

There are three realities – verifiable, objective facts – that the protesters and complainers are refusing to accept, or even mention.

  1. The executive order is not a ban directed against Muslims.  It affects seven nations, not seven religions (or even one of the latter).  There are dozens of other nations with majority Muslim populations that are not affected at all, and whose citizens remain free to enter the USA upon compliance with standard norms and conditions.  If this were a ban on Muslims, those nations and their citizens would also have been affected.  Q.E.D.
  2. President Trump did not designate seven nations in his executive order.  He designated only one – Syria.  The other six – Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen – were designated either in the Terrorist Travel Prevention Act of 2015 – signed into law by President Obama – or by the Department of Homeland Security in 2016 – also on President Obama’s watch.  See US Customs and Border Protection guidelines for further information.
  3. It was a deliberate policy of the Obama administration to admit refugees even if adequate background checks could not be conducted.  FBI Director James Comey admitted as much to Congress, openly, with virtually no negative media reaction.  It’s the fruits of that neglect that President Trump is now attempting to address with his executive order.

I’m truly sorry for the refugees caught up in this mess.  I really do feel their pain and fear, because I’ve worked in refugee camps in Africa.  I understand, having seen it at first hand, how devastating can be the effects of being cut off from any form of security, being rootless, adrift in a sea of humanity without any anchors.

Nevertheless, the USA must ensure its own security first.  Fundamentalist terrorism is already a reality in this country, and individuals from the seven nations affected by the President’s executive order have been shown to be part of the threat.  Therefore, everyone from those nations is under heightened suspicion, and all must be investigated and cleared before being allowed to carry on as normal.

That’s the reality of the security situation.  If you think it isn’t . . . then you have no idea what you’re talking about.  Of course, that applies to many, if not most, of the protestors.  Take a look at the signs they’re waving outside US airports at present.  Those signs make it clear that many protestors are simply Trump opponents, not supporters of immigration or refugee admission.  They’re using this as just another opportunity to make trouble for the President.  So much for their integrity . . .

Peter

10 comments

  1. "President Trump's freeze on immigration from seven mostly Muslim countries cites the potential threat of terrorism. But here's the twist — it doesn't include any countries from which radicalized Muslims have actually killed Americans in the U.S. since Sept. 11, 2001.

    The president's executive action, which he signed Friday at the Pentagon, applies to these countries: Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Yemen, Iraq and Sudan.

    Yet no Muslim extremist from any of these places has carried out a fatal attack in the U.S. in more than two decades.

    In contrast, here are the countries of origin of radicalized Muslims who carried out deadly attacks in the U.S., beginning on Sept. 11, 2001: Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Lebanon, United Arab Emirates, Russia and Pakistan."

    http://www.npr.org/sections/parallels/2017/01/27/511861645/trumps-immigration-freeze-omits-those-linked-to-deadly-attacks-in-u-s

    I appreciate your intent–to see that immigrants and refugees are properly vetted–but this order targets the wrong countries. Perhaps not coincidentally, the countries on the second list–sources of terrorism against the US, but not blocked at the border–are countries in which Trump has business interests.

    Another story–http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/01/28/512158238/arrivals-to-u-s-blocked-and-detained-as-trumps-immigration-freeze-sets-in?utm_source=facebook.com&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=npr&utm_term=nprnews&utm_content=20170128 points out that the order applied to people who already have green cards, and indeed, to people already in the US (a federal judge enjoined the latter bit). It even applies to people who risked their lives to assist our military as interpreters, etc.

    Even assuming Trump's heart is in the right place, his execution is ham-fisted at best, and corrupt at worst.

  2. And it barrs ALL peoples entering form these countries until vetted.

    Which I'd like to see for ALL immigrants. Every one…No matter what religion….No matter WHERE they came from.

    And innit odd that in the past years, there have been so many muslim "refugees" but no christian, yazidi or other minority religion peoples from the area? Those folks who are truly persecuted because of their religious beliefs. Not just young muslim men who claim to be refugees…without families or siblings.

  3. @Dave: You're spouting talking points from Media Matters and other progressive sources. You're ignoring the issue that President Trump DID NOT SPECIFY six out of the seven countries named in his executive order. President Obama did. Why are you blaming President Trump for that, instead of President Obama?

    Furthermore, I don't believe for a moment that President Trump said to himself, "Oh – I mustn't name countries where I have business interests." The very idea is ludicrous, IMHO. I think that's a red herring – again, put out there as a liberal/progressive 'talking point'. Show me evidence, not speculation.

    As for applying across the board – there's no alternative. I've worked in security situations, in both military and law enforcement service. When vetting has failed – as it demonstrably has here in the USA – then you've got to re-vet everyone concerned. Yes, that's very sad and unfortunate for some of those affected. I truly feel for them, and I think some form of compensation will be in order when they're eventually cleared. Nevertheless, you can't automatically assume that anyone's good to go when, in the past, some of those so designated have turned on and killed US personnel. (That applies in this country, too, and not just to refugees – remember the Fort Hood massacre?)

    Sorry, but you haven't answered my points at all. You've simply provided talking points that are being propagated by many liberal and progressive sources. I remain unconvinced.

  4. Peter, if you look at the link, it's NPR, not Media Matters. Do they lean a bit to the left? Yes, but they tend to be pretty good with their facts nonetheless. Do you dispute that, say, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan have been sources of terrorists who have conducted fatal attacks on Americans?

    Trump had the discretion to specify–or exclude–countries as he saw fit. He may not have written the original list, but he ratified it.

    From the second link–do you dispute that he blocked people who have risked their lives assisting our military? Don't you think they, at least, were vetted before being allowed to do such work?

    Sorry, but I think you've missed the mark on this one.

  5. The executive order contained exemptions for Green card holders and those with valid visas; DHS personnel have stated they interpret it as covering everybody from those nations – it would be interesting to find out who in DHS made that decision; since President Trump has had any appointments confirmed there, it was likely a decision made by those who came under Obama – to me this overreaction was set up to make Trump look bad by deliberately misinterpreting his orders.
    This Fox article quotes a Customs Agent who refused to allow those detained to meet with their lawyers telling them to talk to the President http://www.foxnews.com/us/2017/01/29/federal-judge-grants-stay-to-allow-those-with-visas-to-remain.html

  6. As compared to, say, Media Matters, HuffPo, etc., yes, NPR is left-ish, but still reasonable. And, again, though slanted, they're pretty damned good about getting the facts correct. Frankly, I've found them to be more factually accurate than FOX, even though I lean more toward FOX's point of view in most cases.

  7. I remember back in '01, where some Good Muslim had just murdered a bunch of Israelis. Did NPR interview the families of the deceased? Nope… Palliwood all the way, with oh so credulous reporters repeating the Hamas approved "fear of backlash" line Sure the deed was regrettable, but the real task is to keep the horrible Israelis from doing anything about it. Killing women and children was fine, as long as they weren't Muslim.
    Quote from fools, be taken as a fool.

  8. OLD MAN TWO STICKS SEZ I have to note that you don't ref a govt site for the exec order… I have searched the white-house site and the federal register & found exec orders from before & after this ones CLAIMED date but I can't find this one… google, yahoo, duck-duck-go.. NO FEDERAL SITE has this exec order… is it for real and if so, where has the Donald posted it??? ANYBODY???

  9. We are coming to the point of blaming the refugees themselves for their predicament. When people claim that only 1-100 to 1-1000 Muslims are bad, then why do the 99 – 999 good Muslims fight back right there and then. Sounds like pretty good odds to me. If there is a justifiable homocide, killing those who are attempting to kill you and your family is a good reason to do so.

    Instead – they run. Plenty of Muslim countries to emigrate too, but for some reason, these countries restrict them. (Maybe they know something the West doesn't?) So the West allows refugees to come to their countries – and violence suddenly ensues.

    Anyone else seeing a pattern here ?

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