The irony is that for decades New York City and other cities have adopted “Sanctuary” policies that, to one extent or another, block federal immigration law enforcement officers from interacting with local and state officials. The level of cooperation between local officials and federal immigration authorities or lack thereof, varies greatly from one jurisdiction to another, but as of late, has all but ended in many such jurisdictions across the United States.
The State of New York even has taken to providing illegal aliens with driver’s licenses while blocking DMV (Department of Motor Vehicle) information from federal immigration agencies including the U.S. Border Patrol, Customs and Border Protection inspectors at ports of entry, and ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) as I reported in my recent article, “New York State Blocks ICE and Border Patrol Access to DMV Database.”
Governor Cuomo has outrageously taken to calling ICE agents “thugs.”
Meanwhile the 9/11 Commission made it abundantly clear that international terrorists, and not just the 9/11 hijacker-terrorists, exploited key vulnerabilities to enter the United States and embed themselves within the immigration system, hiding in plain sight as they went about their deadly preparations. The very same immigration system that the city most devastated on September 11, 2001 — New York — has acted most aggressively to undermine and subvert.
Now in spite of the supposed abhorrence to secure national borders and effective immigration law enforcement, New York City is at it again — apparently creating its own “Border Patrol” to secure the borders of the city of New York!
The announcement by Mayor Bill de Blasio on Wednesday seemed to signal a new crackdown in the city’s efforts to curb the spread of the coronavirus: “Traveler registration checkpoints” would be set up at bridges and tunnels, conjuring images of police officers stopping cars and detaining people from out of state.
The New York Times report then said that this was more about informing motorists about the need to quarantine if they were coming from states where they were experiencing increases in the virus.
In reviewing the policies, however, de Blasio’s program is far more than an “educational” effort but imposes fines of up to ten thousand dollars and forms of stringent punishment.
De Blasio clearly sees those entering the city as posing a potential threat to public health.
What is unquestionable is that America’s immigration laws are similarly focused on protecting America and Americans from foreign nationals who pose a threat to public health — as well as to public safety, national security and the jobs and wages of Americans.
For all of the globalists’ rancor about how racist our immigration laws are, they should review the relevant section of the Immigration and Nationality Act, specifically 8 U.S. Code § 1182, which enumerates the categories of aliens who are deemed inadmissible because they pose a threat to the safety and well-being of America and Americans.
That section of law makes no mention and no distinction about race, religion or ethnicity whatsoever, but does begin by stating:
(a) Classes of aliens ineligible for visas or admission Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, aliens who are inadmissible under the following paragraphs are ineligible to receive visas and ineligible to be admitted to the United States:
(i) who is determined (in accordance with regulations prescribed by the Secretary of Health and Human Services) to have a communicable disease of public health significance; 
(ii) except as provided in subparagraph (C), who seeks admission as an immigrant, or who seeks adjustment of status to the status of an alienlawfully admitted for permanent residence, and who has failed to present documentation of having received vaccination against vaccine-preventable diseases, which shall include at least the following diseases: mumps, measles, rubella, polio, tetanus and diphtheria toxoids, pertussis, influenza type B and hepatitis B, and any other vaccinations against vaccine-preventable diseases recommended by the Advisory Committee for Immunization Practices,
That section of federal law that serves as the framework for the decisions made by CBP (Customs and Border Protection) inspectors at ports of entry also deems that aliens who are criminals, terrorists, spies, human rights violators, human traffickers, drug smugglers and others who pose a threat to national security, public safety and the jobs and wages of Americans are to be inadmissible.
If the mayor and governor are concerned about saving innocent lives, why would they undermine federal laws that were enacted to protect innocent lives?
Yet for years New York’s mayor and governor and their acolytes have done everything their twisted minds could come up with to undermine the enforcement of these vital federal immigration laws.
Once again hypocrisy rules in de Blasio’s words, deeds and policies.
Our nation’s immigration laws make absolutely no distinction or even provide any language that pertains to the issues of race, religion or ethnicity.
Nevertheless, a frequent but utterly bogus claim made by the “leaders” of these sanctuary jurisdictions is that they seek to protect the “immigrants” from “unconstitutional” actions of federal immigration authorities and are concerned about the harm that our immigration laws may have on the civil rights of aliens who are illegally present in the United States.
The oft-claimed concerns voiced by these immigration anarchists, about how enforcing our immigration laws violates the Constitution, completely ignores Article IV, Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution, which states:
“The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened) against domestic Violence.”
Invasion, incidentally, has been defined, in part, as:
An incursion by a large number of people or things into a place or sphere of activity or an unwelcome intrusion into another’s domain.
Today there are tens millions of aliens who have either evaded the inspections process conducted at ports of entry by CBP (Customs and Border Protection) inspectors or were lawfully admitted into the United States and then subsequently violated their terms of admission.
Certainly, the term invasion is appropriate to describe the huge number of foreign nationals (aliens) who are illegally present in our country, undermining public health, public safety, national security and the jobs and wages of Americans.
It is clear that opponents of immigration law enforcement are actually opposed to the Constitution itself and the protections it provides to America and Americans.
Just as the attacks by the anarchists began with attacks on immigration law enforcement that have now metastasized to include the police and all forms of law enforcement, remember Nancy Pelosi referred to federal agents as “Storm Troopers.” It is clear that the anarchists increasingly are seeking to dismantle all of our Constitutionally-protected freedoms, especially our First and Second Amendment rights, as I noted recently in my piece, “Attacks on Law Enforcement Are Attacks on America.”
If Mayor de Blasio wants to raise money for NYC he could charge admission to anyone willing to enter the city’s limits so that they could experience, up close and in person, a city where the loons are running the asylum! I doubt, however, that too many would be willing to enter, let alone pay to witness the “freak show.”
It is clear that the radical politicians aren’t really concerned about public health or public safety but about consolidating their grip on political power, no matter the subsequent cost in human lives.
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Michael Cutlerhttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngMichael Cutler2020-08-11 06:36:022020-08-11 06:36:02'Sanctuary' NYC Creates Its Own 'Border Patrol' Once again, leftist hypocrisy rears its ugly head.
TAMPA—Vice President Mike Pence portrayed a stark contrast facing America during a visit Wednesday to the swing state of Florida.
“We stand at a crossroads of freedom,” Pence said. “Before us lie two paths: One based on the dignity and worth of every individual, and the other on the growing control of the state. One road leads to greater freedom and opportunity, and the other road leads to socialism and decline.”
He added, “The choice we face is whether America remains America.”
Pence’s words drew strong applause from the 250 supporters gathered in the hotel ballroom. It was Pence’s third and final stop in the Tampa area, where he was greeted with flag-waving and sign-toting supporters along the route of the motorcade. Pence also visited a women’s medical clinic and a Baptist church Wednesday.
Throughout the day, Pence touted the Trump administration’s pro-life achievements and commitment to religious freedom while offering a warning to supporters on what the future might hold.
The choice could not be more clear. And I want to make you a promise: This President, this Vice President, and this Administration will ALWAYS stand up for the freedom of speech of every American, and we will always stand for LIFE. pic.twitter.com/BMRBoWrKRG
Pence also spoke forcefully in defense of law enforcement and against efforts to defund police in America’s major cities.
“President Trump and I know that the men and women who put on the uniform of law enforcement every day are the best people in this country,” Pence said to applause. “With this president and this administration, we will always back the blue. We will always stand with the men and women on the Thin Blue Line of law enforcement. We’re not going to defund the police—not now, not ever.”
Earlier this week, The Wall Street Journal reported that 36 of America’s 50 largest cities have experienced a double-digit rise in homicide rates. Two cities—Austin and Chicago—have seen homicide rates skyrocket more than 50% compared to last year.
“We don’t need to choose between supporting law enforcement and supporting our minority communities,” Pence said. “This president has done both every single day, and we will continue to deliver. We will support law enforcement, we will support our minority communities, with liberty and justice for all.”
Pence’s staff invited The Daily Signal after the White House Correspondents Association was unable to find a volunteer to travel with the vice president. NBC News, The Federalist’s Mollie Hemingway, and CBN News’ David Brody also accompanied Pence on the trip.
In an interview scheduled to air Thursday, Pence told CBN News about the importance of the Supreme Court. He also bluntly stated, “Chief Justice Roberts has been a disappointment to conservatives.”
EXCLUSIVE: Vice President Mike Pence calls out Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts by name. He says, "Chief Justice Roberts has been a disappointment to conservatives." Watch from my interview with @VP in Florida today. Full report on @700club Thursday + clips on @CBNNewspic.twitter.com/z6IANVONr5
Pence cited Trump’s appointment of conservative jurists among the administration’s top accomplishments, adding other achievements that include protecting the sanctity of life and religious freedom, rebuilding the military, reviving the economy, cutting taxes, reducing red tape, enacting the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, and creating jobs.
“President Trump has kept the promises that he’s made to the American people, to the people of Florida, and especially to people of faith,” Pence said.
Pence’s early afternoon visit to a pregnancy center marked the first time a sitting vice president appeared at such a medical clinic, according to the pro-life Susan B. Anthony List. Afterward, Pence spoke to the organization’s Life Wins! 2020 Tour at the nearby Starkey Road Baptist Church.
Health and Human Services Deputy Secretary Eric Hargan, who preceded Pence’s speech, cited the department’s Title X family planning services rule as an example of the Trump administration’s commitment to protecting the dignity of human life.
“There has never been a more pro-life and pro-family administration,” Hargan said.
Pence said the Declaration of Independence put life at the center of the American experiment. Yet, 47 years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court made a decision in Roe vs. Wade that fundamentally challenged the right to life. He warned that decades of pro-life progress could soon be erased.
“Now more than ever, pro-life Americans need to make our voice heard. … You need to speak out and become involved,” he said. “The radical left wants to silence pro-life Americans.”
Thank you, Florida! From the first day of this Admin, President @realDonaldTrump kept his promises to people of faith & the people of Florida. We stood for life & religious liberty, rebuilt our military, appointed Conservative Judges & Justices & revived the American economy! pic.twitter.com/BLrAjb33mW
Speaking later in the day at a “Faith in Freedom” rally in Clearwater, Pence said, “The foundation of America is freedom, but the foundation of freedom is faith.”
He added, “I’m more convinced than ever of two things: America is a freedom-loving nation, and this is a nation of faith.”
With cases of coronavirus still hampering Florida, Pence acknowledged the challenges facing America. He said the Trump administration was focused on helping all Americans.
“We’re opening up America again, and we’re opening up American schools again,” Pence said to applause. “I’ll make you a promise—as you in the Sunshine State and people all across the country continue to contend with this pandemic—we will not rest until Florida and America put this coronavirus in the past, and we bring Florida and America back bigger and better than ever before.”
Democratic Socialists say, “America should be more like socialist countries such as Sweden and Denmark.” And millions of young people believe them…
For years, “Democratic Socialists” have been growing a crop of followers that include students and young professionals. America’s future will be in their hands.
How are socialists deluding a whole generation? One of their most effective arguments is that “democratic socialism” is working in Scandinavian countries like Sweden and Norway. They claim these countries are “proof” that socialism will work for America. But they’re wrong. And it’s easy to explain why.
Our friends at The Heritage Foundation just published a new guide that provides three irrefutable facts that debunks these myths. For a limited time, they’re offering it to readers of The Daily Signal for free.
Get your free copy of “Why Democratic Socialists Can’t Legitimately Claim Sweden and Denmark as Success Stories” today and equip yourself with the facts you need to debunk these myths once and for all.
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00The Daily Signalhttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngThe Daily Signal2020-08-06 06:19:422020-08-06 06:22:44Pence: ‘The Choice We Face Is Whether America Remains America’
This is insane: “the No Ban Act would repeal all of Trump’s travel bans and would prevent future presidents from enacting similar broad bans based on national origin.”
So future Presidents would not even be able to ban people entering the United States from a country with which the U.S. was at war.
Note also that this bill is an attempt to end the “Muslim ban,” which does not exist. What does exist is a ban on immigration from several countries, most but by no means all of which are Muslim, that cannot or will not provide accurate information about prospective immigrants. The list of countries was devised during the Obama administration, while Biden was Vice President. Most Muslim countries have no such restrictions. To characterize this, as the hopelessly compromised Judy Chu does here, as “driven by prejudice,” is irrational and dangerous, as it casts a legitimate national security measure as hateful, a line of argumentation that would ultimately make it impossible for the United States to do anything to defend itself at all.
The suicidal, anti-American Left becomes more open about its priorities and intentions by the day.
“Trump accuses Democrats of going ‘Stone Cold Left — Venezuela on steroids!,’” by Marisa Schultz, Fox News, July 25, 2020:
President Trump Saturday lashed out at House Democrats who this week passed a repeal of his travel ban, claiming the party has gone “Stone Cold Left.”
In a morning tweet, Trump said his travel ban that initially targeted predominantly Muslim-majority countries and was expanded after court challenges was a “big win” and “successfully keeps very bad and dangerous people out of our great country.”
“The Dems have gone Stone Cold Left — Venezuela on steroids!” Trump tweeted.
The House Wednesday passed “The No Ban Act” on a mainly party-line vote of 233-183. Two Republicans — Reps. Will Hurd of Texas and Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania — joined with Democrats.
The legislation was hailed as a long-awaited victory for Muslim Americans and civil rights groups who had been protesting Trump’s travel ban since 2017.
But the victory was expected to be short-lived. The Senate has no plans to take it up, and Trump would surely veto the check on his authority. Trump said Saturday the legislation “hopefully, will be DEAD in the Senate!”…
The No Ban Act would repeal all of Trump’s travel bans and would prevent future presidents from enacting similar broad bans based on national origin….
“This ban never had anything to do with national security; it was always driven by prejudice,” said bill sponsor Rep. Judy Chu, D-Calif….
“This is not a Muslim ban,” said Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz. “This is a legitimate travel restriction implemented for the safety of this nation.”
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Robert Spencerhttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngRobert Spencer2020-07-28 05:20:382020-07-28 05:24:47House passes bill repealing all of Trump’s travel bans and preventing future presidents from enacting similar bans
As if there wasn’t enough proselytizing, obfuscating and dissembling about Islam to American school children.
Can you imagine if any politician, let alone a Presidential candidate suggested with teach more Judaism or Christianity in the public schools. All hell would break loose.
“Hadith from the Prophet Muhammad instructs, ‘Whomever among you sees a wrong, let him change it with his hand. If he is not able, then with his tongue. If he is not able, then with his heart.’” Joe Biden
Biden wishes American schools ‘taught more’ about Islamic faith
Joe Biden lamented the lack of Islamic education in American school curricula at a Muslim voter outreach forum.
“I wish we taught more in our schools about the Islamic faith. I wish we talked about all the great confessional faiths. It’s one of the great confessional faiths,” Biden said Monday.
Biden, the presumptive 2020 Democratic presidential nominee and two-term vice president, told Emgage Action’s Million Muslim Votes Summit that he would end President Trump’s “vile” travel ban targeting Muslim nations on the first day of his administration should he win the White House in 100 days on Nov. 3.
The 36-year Delaware senator added that he would work with Congress to pass anti-hate-crime legislation and reiterated his support of a two-state solution in the Middle East.
“I’ll continue to champion the rights of Palestinians and Israelis to have a state of their own — as I have for decades. Each of them, a state of their own,” he said.
Joe Biden speaks to Million Muslim Votes Summit: "Hadith from the Prophet Muhammad instructs, 'Whomever among you sees a wrong, let him change it with his hand. If he is not able, then with his tongue. If he is not able, then with his heart.'" pic.twitter.com/2mJDKExILJ
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Pamela Gellerhttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngPamela Geller2020-07-21 06:42:512020-07-21 06:46:09WATCH Joe Biden speaks to Million Muslim Votes Summit: “I wish we taught more in our schools about the Islamic faith.”
Islam is akin to violence. Violence is the core of Islam and it has been ever since the time of Muhammad in Medina by Muhammad’s own edict and conducts. Without violence of all kinds, Islamic ideology would undergo a slow death. Violence is the lifeblood of Islam. Take away violence and you shut down the blood supply from the body of this nefarious cult.
We need to realize Islam is violent, not only against non-Muslims, but it is also violent against its own numerous sects and offshoots. Even within every sect and offshoot violence in the most savage ways is practiced. Just to name some examples: public lashing, cutting off hands for stealing even a morsel of bread, blinding convicts or hanging them, stoning the so-called adulterers, castrating sexual offenders and hanging of homosexuals. That is Islam in a nutshell.
There are abundant examples of violence committed in the name of Islam by Islamic terrorists. I refer to two previous terror attacks. The Manchester suicide bombing that killed 22 people including children and Islamist massacre of Jewish children in Toulouse, France.
You may ask who mass-murdered Manchester’s Children? A deranged British national Muslim Salman Abedi, son of Libyan parents? That is what the official disclosure stated. Wrong. In the same way that guns don’t kill people, people kill people, creatures like this betrayer are instruments of mayhem and mass murder nurtured and used by his Islamist handlers in complicity with the permissive self-serving left and politicians.
Draining the swamp is a popular rallying slogan these days in reference to the Washington cabal of leeches sucking dry the vitality of this nation to feed their own voracious appetite. Good luck with that Mr. President.
The swamp has been around for a long time and shows the promise of not only surviving but even devouring anyone thinking of disturbing it.
And everyone knows that one cannot kill every single mosquito a swamp produces. It is, therefore, draining it the only sure way of eliminating the mosquitoes — the swamp by its very design produces.
Now, mass murderers like this evil, Salman Abedi, are the natural products of the swamp called Islam. For as long as this Islam swamp is around, more and more killers will send forth to the world. There is no realistic way of keeping track of these individual killers of Allah. Even when they are known to the authorities as clear risks — like the children-killer Salman — the nihilist, anything-goes left and politicians defend the rights of these ticking bombs.
The swamp is the problem. The vested interest exploiters of this muck called Islam are the Saudis, the mullahs of Iran, and a whole host of other beneficiaries that keep supplying it with the murky muck it needs.
This Islam swamp, billed as the one and only true religion of Allah must be exposed for what it is and stamped out. The left and its permissive Islam apologists are complicit in the most crime of mass murder such as Manchester, Toulouse and hundreds of others.
Savagery by Islamists is carried out in the same ritualistic manner as they prostrate multiple times toward Mecca in tribute to Allah and his emissary Muhammad. Yet, from time to time, and much more often these days, the devotees of Muhammad manage atrocities that are beyond the pale. The massacre, in cold blood, of three Jewish children and a rabbi in front of a school in Toulouse, France, represents the ultimate in a most dastardly act, even in the shameful annals of this cult of violence.
What makes any creature, much less a human, brim himself with enough hatred to walk to three young children and shoot them in the head? To complete the heinous act, he also shot the rabbi in the same manner, got back on his motorbike and sped away.
Islam has a great advantage of the first call on the new arrival. It is an omnipresent system with masses of believers, mosques and madrasahs, and a host of other social and economic organizations that overpower the person and steer him into the same fold; it is a sea of people who seem to know what they are all about, what life and death are all about, and what one must also do.
How to drain the Islam swamp? It is not that easy. Massive efforts are required – on the one hand, to drain the breeding swamps of the Islamic disease, while on the other hand helping Muslims adopt an alternative perspective of life that addresses their perplexities and offers a degree of comfort that religions dispense without pitting one segment of humanity against another.
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Amil Imanihttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngAmil Imani2020-07-13 06:14:082020-07-13 06:15:06Drain the Islam Swamp
What could they possibly have been planning? No doubt they just wanted to do the jobs that Americans refuse to take, right?
While Leftists continue to deny that border control is a national security issue, recently a Muslim migrant from Jordan named Moayad Heider Mohammad Aldairi was sentenced to three years in prison for sneaking at least six Yemeni Muslims into the United States across the border from Mexico. Their intentions were unlikely to have been benign. Judicial Watch reported back in 2016 that police in a New Mexico border town arrested a woman they described as an “Islamic refugee” who was “in possession of the region’s gas pipeline plans.”
This was, it said, the latest in “a number of stories in the last few years about Mexican drug traffickers smuggling Islamic terrorists into the United States through the porous southern border…. A few months ago Judicial Watch reported that members of a cell of Islamic terrorists stationed in Mexico cross into the U.S. to explore targets for future attacks with the help of Mexican drug traffickers.”
But building a wall? That’s racist.
“Texas Border Patrol Agents Apprehend Three Illegal Migrants From Iran,” by Jennie Taer, SaraCarter.com, June 25, 2020 (thanks to Creeping Sharia):
Border Patrol agents stationed at the Del Rio Sector of Texas detained a family of three Iranian nationals illegally crossing the border on Sunday, according to a press release. The group is considered to be “Special Interest Aliens” by the Department of Homeland Security because of their home country’s terrorism prevalence.
“Agents in Del Rio Sector encounter individuals from countries all throughout the world,” said Del Rio Sector Acting Chief Patrol Agent Doyle E. Amidon, Jr….
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Robert Spencerhttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngRobert Spencer2020-07-11 04:49:092020-07-11 04:49:09Texas Border Patrol Agents Nab Three Muslims from Iran trying to Cross Illegally into U.S.
A Maryland county that offers illegal immigrants sanctuary keeps releasing dangerous criminals from jail to shield them from federal authorities, most recently a man from El Salvador who raped a seven-year-old girl multiple times. Rather than honor a detainer issued by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), officials in Montgomery County freed the child rapist on bond recently and he remains at large. Court documents obtained by a local media outlet say the 56-year-old, Rene Ramos-Hernandez, who reportedly lives illegally in Brentwood “forced unwanted sexual intercourse” with the girl “at least ten times.”
In a statement issued this week, ICE blasts Montgomery County officials for protecting illegal aliens who commit state crimes. “Montgomery County continues the practice of not honoring lawful ICE detainers and release potential public safety threats back into the community,” said acting Baltimore Field Office Director Francisco Madrigal. “When they refuse to give adequate notification of an impending release to allow a safe transfer of custody, it shows their actions are insincere. ICE believes the best way to protect public safety is for law enforcement to work together.” The agency’s Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) lodged a detainer with the Montgomery County Detention Center on June 19 and authorities blew it off, instead discharging Ramos-Hernandez on June 23. ICE was notified that the illegal immigrant rapist was let go, but officers at the Montgomery County jail refused to hold Ramos-Hernandez until ERO officers arrived at the facility, according to the agency.
Ramos-Hernandez has lived in the U.S. illegally for years. In fact, the rapes occurred from 2002 to 2003, when he was in his late 30s and the girl was just seven. The victim reported the crimes to Montgomery County Police in 2017 and it took almost two years for local authorities to track down the illegal alien. On June 18 he was booked at the Montgomery County Detention Center (MCDC) in Rockville on two counts of second-degree rape and one count of sexual abuse of a minor. The next day ICE lodged the detainer. A Montgomery County judge granted Ramos-Hernandez a $30,000 bond and now the feds cannot find him even though bail conditions include electronic monitoring and curfew. Ramos-Hernandez was also ordered to have no contact with minors, which is a joke considering authorities do not even know where he is. He provided the court with a Brentwood address and claims to work as a “remodeler,” according to court records cited in the news story. He faces up to 70 years in prison if authorities ever find him.
This case is part of a national crisis generated by local governments around the country that offer violent illegal immigrants sanctuary. Under a local-federal partnership known as 287(g), ICE is notified of jail inmates in the country illegally so that they can be deported after serving time for state crimes or making bail like Ramos-Hernandez. Unfortunately, a growing number of city and county law enforcement agencies are instead releasing the illegal aliens—many with serious convictions such as child sex offenses, rape and murder—rather than turn them over to federal authorities for removal. The lack of cooperation has led ICE to resort to desperate measures, like striking preemptively by publicly disclosing convicts, complete with mug shots, scheduled to be released before they are actually let go by police in municipalities that offer illegal aliens sanctuary. A few months ago, ICE targeted six offenders incarcerated in two Maryland counties—Montgomery and Prince George’s—notorious for shielding illegal immigrants from the feds. Most were incarcerated for sexual crimes involving children, including rape and serious physical abuse that resulted in death. A couple of the offenders were jailed for murder and assault.
Besides Montgomery and Prince George’s counties, two other large Maryland jurisdictions—Baltimore County and the city of Baltimore—shield illegal immigrants from the feds and deportation. Maryland’s Attorney General, the state’s chief law enforcement official, issued a legal memo in late 2018 defending the practice. Complying with ICE detainers for criminal illegal aliens is voluntary, the Attorney General writes in the document, and state and local law enforcement officials are potentially exposed to liability if they hold someone beyond the release date determined by state law. In 2017, Baltimore’s Chief Deputy State’s Attorney instructed prosecutors to think twice before charging illegal immigrants with minor, non-violent crimes to shield them from Trump administration deportation efforts. This summer Montgomery County took an extra step to help illegal immigrants by launching a $10 million COVID-19 relief fund. Judicial Watch sued on behalf of two county residents and a federal court ruled that the payments likely violate federal law and irreparably harm county taxpayers.
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Judicial Watchhttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngJudicial Watch2020-07-09 05:40:162020-07-09 05:49:01Illegal Immigrant Child Rapist Released from Jail by Maryland Sanctuary County Remains at Large
Illustrating the national security threats created by the nation’s immigration system, the overwhelming majority of individuals convicted of terrorism are foreigners who entered the United States legally through various federal programs. Three out of every four convicted terrorists between September 11, 2001 and December 31, 2016 are foreign born and came to the United States through our immigration system, according to a new report issued jointly by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Justice (DOJ).
At least 549 individuals were convicted of terrorism-related charges in American federal courts since 2001 and 402 of them—approximately 73%–were foreign-born, the report says. Here’s the breakdown by citizenship at the time of their convictions; 254 were not U.S. citizens, 148 were naturalized and received American citizenship and 147 were U.S. born. Additionally, 1,716 foreigners with national security concerns were removed from the United States. The Trump administration stresses that figures include only those aliens who were convicted or removed and therefore do not represent the total measure of foreign terrorist infiltration of the United States. Statistics on individuals facing terrorism charges who have not yet been convicted will be provided in follow-up reports that will be made available to the public.
This DHS/DOJ report, issued this month, is disturbing enough and reveals that a significant number of terrorists entered the country through immigration programs that use family ties and extended-family chain migration as a basis for entry. Among them is Mufid Elfgeeh, a national of Yemen who benefitted from chain migration in 1997 and was sentenced to more than 22 years in prison for attempting to recruit fighters for ISIS. Sudanese Mahmoud Amin Mohamed Elhassan came to the U.S. in 2012 as a relative of a lawful permanent resident and eventually pleaded guilty to attempting to provide material support to ISIS. Pakistani Uzair Paracha was admitted to the U.S. in 1980 as a family member of a lawful permanent resident and in 2006 was sentenced to more than three decades in prison for providing material support to Al Qaeda. Khaleel Ahmed, a national of India, was admitted to the United States in 1998 as a family member of a naturalized United States citizen. Ahmed eventually became an American citizen and in 2010 was sentenced to more than eight years in prison for conspiring to provide material support to terrorists.
Other convicted terrorists came to the U.S. through the controversial visa lottery program, the multi-agency probe found. Among them is Abdurasaul Hasanovich Juraboev, a national of Uzbekistan who was admitted into the country as a diversity visa lottery recipient in 2011. In 2015, he pleaded guilty to conspiring to support ISIS and in 2017 Juraboev was sentenced to 15 years in prison. Sudanese Ali Shukri Amin was admitted to the U.S. in 1999 as the child of a diversity visa lottery recipient and subsequently obtained American citizenship through naturalization. In 2015, he was sentenced to more than 11 years in prison for conspiring to provide material support and resources to ISIS. Amin admitted to using social media to provide advice and encouragement to ISIS and its supporters and facilitated ISIS supporters seeking to travel to Syria to join the terrorist group. Amin also helped a Virginia teen named Reza Niknejad get to Syria to join ISIS in 2015.
“The United States faces a serious and persistent terror threat, and individuals with ties to terror can and will use any pathway to enter our country,” the new DHS/DOJ report states. “Accordingly, DHS has taken significant steps to improve the security of all potential routes used by known or suspected terrorists (KST) to travel to the United States to ensure that individuals who would do harm to Americans are identified and detected, and their plots are disrupted. These figures reflect the challenges faced by the United States and demonstrate the necessity to remain vigilant and proactive in our counterterrorism posture.”
EDITORS NOTE: This Judicial Watch column is republished with permission. All rights reserved.
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Judicial Watchhttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngJudicial Watch2020-07-08 08:41:592020-07-08 08:41:593 Out of 4 Convicted Terrorists Came to U.S. Legally Via Current Immigration System
H.R. 5383, the “New Way Forward Act”, which has 44 cosponsors, would effectively eviscerate immigration enforcement at the border and in the interior of the United States.
It would all but eliminate detention for immigration purposes, and impose new burdens on our already overtaxed immigration courts.
It would place onerous restrictions on ICE officers and Border Patrol agents in making immigration arrests — including in desolate areas of the border in the middle of the night.
It would require those officers and agents to justify every arrest of an alien without a warrant before an immigration judge, straining to the point of elimination DHS’s limited immigration-enforcement resources.
It would create a “statute of limitations” of five years for the commencement of removal proceedings based on even the most serious criminal offenses.
It would limit the criminal grounds of removal so significantly that only the most extreme offenses would render criminal aliens removable, and would also expand the relief available to the few aliens who would still be removable on criminal grounds.
It would make the amendments to the criminal grounds of removal and relief retroactive, so that even criminal aliens who have been removed from the United States, but who would not have been removable had that law been in effect, could apply to have their cases reopened or reconsidered. Immigration judges and the Board of Immigration Appeals would have no discretion not to reopen or reconsider those cases.
It would require DHS to pay to fly those criminal aliens who have been removed and who would be eligible for reopening or reconsideration thereunder back to the United States — which would result in dangerous criminal aliens being returned at taxpayer expense back to this country to commit more crimes.
It would prevent state and local law enforcement from assisting ICE and CBP in immigration enforcement in any way, and bar the inclusion of immigration-related information into the NCIC database or its incorporated criminal history databases. This would essentially make every jurisdiction in the United States a “sanctuary jurisdiction”. As a result, ICE officers would have to risk their own safety and the safety of the community as a whole to arrest dangerous criminal aliens at their homes or in public places.
It would repeal the criminal grounds of illegal entry and reentry into the United States, encouraging fraud, enriching smugglers, traffickers, and criminal cartels, and endangering the national security and the community.
On December 10, 2019, Rep. Jesus Garcia (D-Ill.) introduced H.R. 5383, the “New Way Forward Act”, which now has 44 cosponsors.1 It is a roadmap for Democrats’ plans to hobble immigration enforcement if they ever regain control of the White House and Congress, introduced by representatives who apparently believe that the current immigration laws are too harsh on criminal aliens in the United States, that immigration enforcement in the interior is currently too effective, and that there are not enough criminals in this country already. Regrettably, I am not exaggerating.
Detention is a key tool for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in its enforcement of the immigration laws, not just in the interior, but also in assisting U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in enforcing those laws at the border.
As civil-rights icon Barbara Jordan, then-chairwoman of President Clinton’s Commission on Immigration Reform, testified in February 1995: “Credibility in immigration policy can be summed up in one sentence: those who should get in, get in; those who should be kept out, are kept out; and those who should not be here will be required to leave.”2 By this standard, the current immigration-enforcement effort is a failure, and a lack of detention space is a main cause of that failure.
In its Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) report for FY 2019, ICE revealed that at the end of the fiscal year, there were 595,430 fugitive aliens in the United States; that is, aliens who have “failed to leave the United States based upon a final order of removal, deportation or exclusion, or who have failed to report to ICE after receiving notice to do so” — up more than 50,000 cases from just two years before.3 Those were aliens who had never been in custody or who had been released — either on parole, bond, or their own recognizance — who had received due process, were ordered removed, and who failed to leave.
Not that this should be a surprise. Aliens who enter the United States illegally, or who overstay their visas, do so to live and (generally) work in the United States, (generally) indefinitely. They literally have no incentive to leave the United States if they are not detained and are ordered removed.
As a bipartisan panel of the Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC) found in an April 2019 report: “Even if the asylum hearing and appeals ultimately go against the migrant, he or she still has the practical option of simply remaining in the U.S. illegally, where the odds of being caught and removed remain very low.”4 How low? In FY 2019, the ICE ERO report stated that the agency had a non-detained docket of more than 3.2 million cases, and was detaining (at the end of FY 2019) 50,922 aliens, most (63 percent) of whom were recent apprehensions at the border.5 If you are an alien on ICE’s docket, your odds of being detained are just less than one in 63.
In contrast, due to the surge of aliens at the border in FY 2019, the agency only removed just over 143,000 aliens last year — 86 percent of whom had criminal convictions or pending criminal charges — down from 158,851 the year before. At that rate, it will take ICE more than four years to remove all of the alien absconders in the United States — assuming that every alien ordered subsequently removed during that period leaves voluntarily (which, as noted, they won’t).
H.R. 5383 would make ICE’s efforts to enforce the laws in the interior and at the border next to impossible by ending mandatory detention for terrorist and criminal aliens (more on that later), creating a “rebuttable presumption that the alien should be released from custody” (which places an impossible burden on ICE attorneys, who represent the government in bond proceedings), and requiring that the “least restrictive conditions” of detention and supervision be imposed on aliens (including criminal aliens) in removal proceedings and under removal orders.
Further, it requires immigration judges (IJs) to review those conditions “on a monthly basis”, imposing a significant burden on already strained immigration court dockets (the nation’s 466 IJs were handling 1,066,563 cases as of December 31, 2019 — 2,289 cases per IJ).6
That bill would also shorten the time that ICE may detain an alien under a final order from 90 days to 60 days,7 which would require the release of large numbers of aliens from so-called “recalcitrant countries”8 — those “that systematically refuse or delay the repatriation of their citizens.” In addition, H.R. 5383 would provide those aliens with a mechanism to seek release during even that shortened period (those aliens, and in particular aliens removable on terrorist and criminal grounds, are currently subject to mandatory detention).
Restrictions on Immigration Arrests
Not only would the bill add those restrictions to ICE’s detention of aliens, it would also impose significant burdens on that agency and CBP to simply arrest aliens.
Current law (logically) gives DHS officers significant latitude in questioning aliens or suspected aliens, and in arresting (without a warrant) aliens who are entering the United States illegally, as well as aliens who the officer believes are in this country illegally and who are likely to escape before the officer can obtain a warrant.9 The only restriction on this authority is that the alien must be presented “without unnecessary delay” to an officer for questioning as to that alien’s “right to enter or remain in” this country.
H.R. 5383 would place incredible impediments on both the authority of DHS officers to question aliens, and on those officers’ authority to arrest.
Specifically, under that bill, ICE officers could not interrogate any alien if that interrogation is “based on the person’s race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, color, spoken language, or English proficiency.”
It has been my experience that ICE officers generally question suspected aliens based upon a “totality of the circumstances”, which may include some of the factors above (I am unaware of any arrest that has ever been premised in whole or in part on religion or sexual orientation), but also other, additional factors that would indicate that the individual is a removable alien.10 If you have ever been to the border, for example, race, ethnicity, color, and English proficiency in and of themselves would not suggest that an individual is a removable alien, but they may be if the individual is in the back of a trailer that fled from an interior checkpoint.11
Categorically removing these factors from that “totality of the circumstances” analysis would make the task facing ICE officers who suspect an individual of being a removable alien next to impossible, short of the alien blurting out that he or she is in such a status. The restrictions imposed by H.R. 5383 would give even removable aliens no shortage of avenues for escaping (metaphorically) removal by asserting that an “improper” factor was considered. ICE officers would spend all day in immigration court defending the few arrests that they are able to make at “probable cause” hearings — which are also mandated by the bill, within 48 hours of the alien’s arrest without warrant, as explained below.
If the impediments on ICE officers in the interior are burdensome, the ones on Border Patrol agents are downright bizarre and ill-informed.
Specifically, under the bill, those agents could only arrest aliens whom they see entering the United States illegally if: they have probable cause to believe that the alien is in this country in violation of law and “is likely to escape before” the agent can obtain an arrest warrant; if the agent “has reason to believe” that the alien “would knowingly and willfully fail to appear in immigration court” pursuant to a Notice to Appear (“NTA”, the charging document in removal proceedings); and if the alien is presented before an IJ within 48 hours of arrest “to determine whether there is probable cause as” required therein, “including probable cause to believe that” the alien “would have knowingly and willfully failed to appear” — a hearing at which the government would bear the burden of proof.
This provision shows an almost complete lack of understanding as to how the Border Patrol does its job. Aliens are often apprehended in remote portions of the border, far away from Border Patrol stations — making it next to impossible for agents to drive hours to obtain a warrant of arrest. In addition, it is difficult to imagine how an agent could make a determination in the middle of the night whether any given alien (who had entered illegally) would appear before an IJ.
The probable-cause hearing requirement, again, would pull a significant number of Border Patrol agents off of the line almost daily to travel to far-away immigration courts to explain why they made numerous and sundry arrests.
To explain: As of January 2019, CBP employed roughly 20,000 Border Patrol agents,12 most of whom are assigned to the Southwest border, which is about 1,954 miles long.13 Those agents work 50-hour shifts per week, meaning that at any given time (assuming there are 18,000 agents along the border with Mexico) there are approximately 5,357 agents at that border. If CBP had to pull hundreds of them off of the line at any given time, it would create a vacuum that would be exploited by smugglers and traffickers, who would move migrants, drugs, and contraband through the places where agents aren’t stationed.
Of course, immigration courts are not 24-hour-a-day affairs, so it is unclear how, exactly, an alien apprehended on a Friday could be presented before an IJ 48 hours later on Sunday (or Saturday, for that matter).
This provision would essentially require Border Patrol agents to issue NTAs to all aliens apprehended entering illegally in lieu of arresting those aliens. This would, in turn, encourage massive numbers of aliens to enter the United States illegally, overwhelming limited DHS resources even more.
It would also prevent Border Patrol from identifying wanted criminals, gang members, traffickers, and even terrorists in that flood of migrants over the border. Notably, the April report from the bipartisan HSAC panel (referenced above) specifically stated: “By far, the major ‘pull factor’ [driving family units to the Southwest border] is the current practice of releasing with a NTA most illegal migrants who bring a child with them.”14 The bill would exacerbate that problem exponentially, and expand this loophole to single adults entering illegally.
Statute of Limitations on Removal Proceedings for Criminal Aliens
The bill would also create a “statute of limitations” for removal proceedings, requiring that ICE place any alien charged with a criminal-based ground of removability into proceedings within five years of the alien becoming amenable to removal (usually, the date of conviction). Often, ICE is unable to locate aliens who have criminal convictions right away, or fails to realize that an individual with a conviction is an alien for several years.
This provision would give those aliens not a “get out of jail free card,” but rather a “remain in the United States unremovable” card. And, it would do so retroactively, so criminal aliens who were placed into removal proceedings more than five years after their convictions, and subsequently ordered removed, would no longer be removable — regardless of the severity of their criminal offenses.
And, as I will explain below, it would also allow those criminal aliens who have been removed to have their cases reopened and terminated, and to be returned to the United States at taxpayers’ expense.
Limitation on Criminal Removal Grounds
H.R. 5383 would also eviscerate the criminal grounds of inadmissibility15 and deportability under a provision specifically titled “Limit Criminal-System-to-Removal Pipeline” (suggesting that the authors do not want a “pipeline” between prisons and removal for dangerous criminal aliens).
It would eliminate removability for aliens convicted of crimes involving moral turpitude (CIMTs), which are generally characterized as crimes of vileness, baseness, or depravity, as well as crimes that violate moral standards (malum in se, as we say in the law, “wrong in itself” by its very nature).16 Included on this list are crimes that involve fraud, bribery, sex-related offenses (including solicitation of prostitution and incest), willful infliction of injury to a spouse, theft, robbery, knowing possession of child pornography, and communication with a minor for immoral purposes — to name a few. Significantly, aliens convicted of these offenses would not only no longer be deportable if they were here, they would no longer be inadmissible to the United States if they are not.
In addition, the bill would eliminate removability for criminal violations relating to controlled substances other than drug-trafficking offenses (with a significant caveat relating to deportability based on a conviction for an aggravated felony, below), again meaning that applicants for admission would not be barred from entering the United States as a result of such convictions.
H.R. 5383 would also significantly narrow the definition of “aggravated felony” in section 101(a)(43) of the INA, a category of crimes that renders aliens in the United States deportable.17 That list includes murder, rape, sexual abuse of a minor, illicit trafficking in a controlled substance, illicit trafficking in firearms, crimes of violence, theft and burglary, demand for or receipt of ransom, child pornography, racketeer influenced corrupt organization offenses, peonage, slavery, trafficking in persons, gathering or transmitting national defense information, sabotage, offenses involving fraud or deceit in which the loss was $10,000 or more, alien smuggling, and attempts and conspiracies to commit such offenses (as well as many others — this list is not exhaustive).
Currently, an offense does not need to qualify as a “felony” under state or federal law to qualify as an aggravated felony for purposes of deportability. This recognizes the fact that “immigration” is a federal issue, and that a state’s characterization of an offense as a “misdemeanor” or a “felony” has no effect on how that offense should be treated for purposes of removability.
The bill would redefine the term “aggravated felony” for purposes of the INA as “a felony, for which a term of imprisonment of not less than 5 years was imposed.” This is a bad amendment, for at least two reasons.
First, it excludes many offenses that would fall under the federal definition of “felony”, which includes any crime for which the maximum term of imprisonment authorized is a sentence of more than a year.18 Even if you don’t believe that crimes that are not “felonies” should not count as “aggravated felonies” for immigration purposes, crimes with punishments that would qualify as “felonies” under federal law certainly should.
Second, and worse, it would allow many aliens who are currently removable for significant criminal offenses to remain in the United States and commit additional crimes. As my colleague Jessica Vaughan19 noted in 2011 in summarizing a Government Accountability Office report on alien incarcerations, arrests, and costs: “The average incarcerated alien had seven arrests, and committed an average of 12 offenses.”20 Simply put, criminals commit crimes, and convicted criminals usually commit numerous ones.
While the aggravated felonies listed above are serious offenses, as a result of plea bargains or the misguided efforts of lenient sentencing judges, the sentences for those offenses can be relatively light. This is especially true in cases involving rape and sexual abuse of a minor, where prosecutors may attempt to protect the victim from having to testify by striking a deal with the defendant.
H.R. 5383 would shelter the criminals convicted of those offenses from removability, in essence allowing them to remain in the United States and prey again upon the community, unless they received a term of imprisonment of an arbitrary five years or more.
Restrictions on What Constitutes a “Conviction” for Immigration Purposes
Worse, that bill would significantly trim down the formal findings of criminal guilt that would qualify as a “conviction” for purposes of removability, as well as eligibility for immigration relief in section 101(a)(48) of the INA.21
It is important to note that criminal convictions have two consequences under immigration law. First, they can render an alien inadmissible or removable under sections 212(a)(2)22 and 237(a)(2)23 of the INA, respectively. Second, they can render a removable alien ineligible for relief from removal, such as for asylum (sections 208(b)(2)(A)(ii) and (iii) and sections 208(b)(2)(B)(i) and (ii) of the INA),24 cancellation of removal for permanent residents (“42A cancellation”, section 240A(a)(3) of the INA25), and cancellation of removal and adjustment of status for certain nonpermanent residents (“42B cancellation”, section 240A(b)(1)(C) of the INA).
H.R. 5383 would amend the definition of “conviction” for purposes of the INA to exclude:
An adjudication or judgment of guilt that has been dismissed, expunged, sealed, deferred, annulled, invalidated, withheld, or vacated, or where a court has issued a judicial recommendation against removal [JRAD], or an order of probation without entry of judgment or any similar disposition.
This amendment would allow a criminal who has been convicted, and sentenced, and who has served time for an offense to avoid removal by going to a sympathetic judge (or overworked prosecutor) to have that conviction dismissed, expunged, sealed, annulled, invalidated, or vacated, without consideration of whether the criminal actually committed that offense.
As Criminal Defense Lawyer explains:
Many states allow you to expunge, seal or otherwise “hide” or “destroy” your criminal record. Generally, if a criminal record is expunged or sealed, it’s as though the crime never occurred and you can legally say (to a potential employer, for example) that you were never charged or convicted of a crime.26
Or, a “potential IJ”. Therefore, an alien who has committed a serious criminal offense can avoid the immigration consequences of his or her actions by going to court, in instances well after the fact, to “hide” or “destroy” their criminal record for immigration purposes.
With respect to JRADs, as my colleague Dan Cadman has explained, while they previously existed in immigration law, Congress expressly repealed that procedure 30 years ago:
Before repeal, a JRAD was binding on immigration authorities, including immigration judges, although it could not be used for certain offenses or where the sentence exceeded a year of imprisonment.
Next let’s note that JRADs were primarily used in cases involving resident aliens in which mitigating factors existed; the JRAD acted to bar deportation and thus left the alien’s legal ability to remain in the United States intact.27
The JRAD proposed in H.R. 5383 would apply to all aliens, not just lawful permanent resident aliens, and would include foreign nationals who have never been to the United States seeking admission. And Congress repealed that relief for good reason, as I have previously stated: “Elimination of that limited authority made it clear that state-court judges had no power to affect the immigration consequences of criminal convictions.”28 (Emphasis added.)
H.R. 5383 would in fact give state-court judges almost unbridled discretion to interfere in the exclusively federal domain of immigration. Further, it would almost definitely lead to disparate and subjective outcomes, as some jurisdictions (and individual judges) would be more lenient and others stricter were it to come to applying these new powers, if they were conveyed by Congress.
Worse (and yes, it gets much, much worse), the bill would repeal a subparagraph in section 101(a)(48) of the INA that explicitly states that:
Any reference to a term of imprisonment or a sentence with respect to an offense is deemed to include the period of incarceration or confinement ordered by a court of law regardless of any suspension of the imposition or execution of that imprisonment or sentence in whole or in part.29
Instead, under that provision as amended by H.R. 5383, the phrase “term of imprisonment or sentence” for purposes of the INA would include only the “period of incarceration ordered by a court of law”, excluding “confinement” (logically referencing “house arrest”) as well as “any suspension or imposition or execution of that imprisonment or sentence in whole or in part”. The number of criminal aliens who would escape removal under this amendment is incalculable, but that is only the beginning.
Retroactivity of Amendments
That is because the bill would make these amendments explicitly retroactive, applicable not only to convictions and sentences entered before the date of enactment, but also to “admissions and conduct” occurring before the date of enactment. It would provide a map for criminals seeking through the plea process to avoid removal and reoffend, as often as they wanted, until they ran afoul of what would be left of the criminal grounds of removal. And allow them to reopen cases that had long been closed, even if they had already been deported.
Expansion of the Availability of Relief for Criminal Aliens
And even then criminal aliens could still escape removal, because H.R. 5383 explicitly allows IJs to “grant any relief or deferral of removal … to any individual who is otherwise eligible for such relief but for a prior criminal conviction” so long as the respondent can convince the IJ that “such an exercise of discretion” is “appropriate in pursuit of humanitarian purposes, to assure family unity, or when it is otherwise in the public interest.”
That means that you could be sentenced to (and serve) 20 years’ incarceration for murder, rape, or sexual abuse of a minor (or any other aggravated felony), reapply for adjustment of status under section 245 of the INA, show that your removal would disrupt the family unity you share with your sponsoring spouse, and be given a brand new green card.30
Or you could enter the United States illegally, be locked up for 20 years for drug trafficking, and be granted 42B cancellation under section 240A(b) of the INA by showing that such relief is “appropriate in pursuit of humanitarian purposes” (whatever that means).31
I will note that 42B relief requires the applicant show that he or she has been a person of “good moral character” for 10 years before applying, and that under section 101(f)(8) of the INA, an alien who has been convicted of an aggravated felony is barred from being found to be “a person of good moral character”.32 The provision in question (section 401(a) in H.R. 5383), however, states that it applies “[n]othwithstanding any other provision of law,” vitiating this bar.33
And section 401(d) in that bill strikes section 240A(d)(1)34 of the INA, which stops the clock on the accrual of residence and physical presence (periods of which are required for 42A and 42B cancellation of removal) when the alien commits a criminal offense that would render the alien inadmissible under the criminal grounds in sections 212(a)(2)35 and 237(a)(2) of the INA. 36
If you conclude from all that I have explained thus far that the drafters of H.R. 5383 have done everything that they can to allow every criminal alien to remain in the United States short of simply eliminating the criminal grounds of removability, you would not be far off. But then they go one step further.
Return of Criminal Aliens to the United States — at Government Expense
Under Title VII of that bill, captioned glowingly “Right to Come Home”, the drafters require IJs and the Board of Immigration Appeals to grant any motion to reopen or reconsider filed by any foreign national who was “ordered removed, deported, or excluded”, or who left under a grant of voluntary departure, on or after April 24, 1996 (the date of enactment of the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act (AEDPA)),37 who would not have been inadmissible, excludable, or deportable under the eviscerated criminal grounds in H.R. 5383, or who would have been eligible to apply for relief under the senseless amendments made therein.
And DHS (that means you, the taxpayer) has to pay to fly all of those previously deported, excluded, and removed aliens who are eligible for reopening and reconsideration of their cases (not simply those who have been granted reopening and reconsideration) “at Government expense” (emphasis added) back to the United States for their immigration proceedings, and must admit or parole them all.
I almost don’t believe what I just typed myself, so I have to insert section 701(d) of H.R. 5383, so you and I can see for ourselves:
TRANSPORTATION.—The Secretary of Homeland Security shall provide transportation for aliens eligible for reopening or reconsideration of their proceedings under this section, at Government expense, to return to the United States for further immigration proceedings and shall admit or parole the alien into the United States.
And notwithstanding the fact that section 701(a)(1) of the bill would mandate reopening or reconsideration of the removal proceedings of all those criminal aliens who are living abroad who would be newly free to return to the United States, section 701(f) grants those criminals aliens the ability to seek judicial review of any denials of such motions. Meaning that the aliens who were erroneously flown back to the United States at government expense to apply for reopening or reconsideration because they were not actually eligible could remain even longer.
Restrictions on State and Local Assistance in Immigration Enforcement
Not that there would be any resources to arrest and remove them again, anyway. In addition to the ridiculous restrictions on immigration arrests by ICE and CBP described above, H.R. 5383 would also end the successful 287(g) program, under which immigration authority can be delegated to specially trained state and local law-enforcement officers.38
Not satisfied to stop there, the drafters would also bar civil immigration warrants from being entered into the National Crime Information Center (NCIC) database (and its “incorporated criminal history databases”); and bar federal, state, and local law-enforcement officials from entering information relating “to an alien’s immigration status, the existence of a prior removal, deportation, or voluntary departure order against an alien, or any allegations of civil violations of the immigration laws” into those databases. Such information already in those databases would have to be removed within 90 days of the enactment of H.R. 5383, though Lord knows how.
At this point, you really have to wonder whose side the sponsors and drafters of that bill are on. Not to be outdone, however, they also prohibit state and local employees and officials from “performing the function of an immigration officer in relation to the investigation, apprehension, transport, or detention of aliens in the United States or otherwise assist in the performance of such functions.” (Emphasis added.)
This means that unless ICE officers are stationed outside the jailhouse door when the alleged alien rapists of an 11-year-old girl are released, those officers will just have to go and find them somewhere else, likely in a spot where someone (the alien, the ICE agent, an intervener, or an innocent member of the public) could get hurt.39 Under H.R. 5383, every state, county, and city will be Montgomery County, Md., and New York City.
The Bill Eliminates the Criminal Penalties for Illegal Entry and Reentry
Finally, the bill repeals sections 275 and 276 of the INA.40
Section 275 of the INA makes it a misdemeanor, subject to imprisonment for up to six months and a fine, for an alien to enter or attempt to enter the United States illegally or through fraud.41 For any alien who subsequently illegally reenters the United States, that section provides for a felony sentence of two years’ imprisonment and a fine. That section also criminalizes marriage fraud.
Section 276 of the INA makes it a felony, subject to imprisonment for up to two years and a fine, for an alien to reenter the United States illegally after being ordered excluded, deported, or removed, with higher penalties (up to 20 years) for aliens removed after being convicted of aggravated felonies, and up to 10 years for aliens removed on terrorist grounds, as well as those removed on other criminal grounds.42
Eliminating these criminal provisions would remove the (remaining) teeth from border enforcement, because the threat of criminal punishment is a significant deterrent to illegal entry (as I have previously explained), especially for aliens who have been removed on criminal grounds or who pose a danger to the national security.43
In addition to the migrants who have entered illegally themselves, the major beneficiaries of the repeal of these provisions are the smugglers and traffickers who prey upon those migrants in making the life-threatening trip illegally to the border, and the criminal cartels who benefit from their passage over the border into the United States.44
H.R. 5383 Is a Roadmap for Immigration Enforcement under Democratic Control
H.R. 5383 is not a serious proposal — not yet, at least. Few members of Congress or senators facing reelection would want to run the inevitable risk that a criminal protected (or worse, returned at government expense) thereunder would commit a crime so heinous and shocking to the conscience that even a media otherwise ignorant, docile, and uninterested as it relates to alien crime could ignore it.
That said, however, the bill pulls the curtain back on where Democrats want to go on immigration, if they get the power to do so. Why do I say that? The first cosponsor is Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), the vice-chairwoman of the Subcommittee on Immigration and Citizenship at the House Judiciary Committee (the subcommittee to which that bill has been referred). She is no backbencher who has no idea of what this bill would do. She is leadership on that powerful committee.
Look, you may think that the immigration laws are too harsh on criminal aliens (86 percent of all of the aliens removed by ICE in FY 2019 either had criminal convictions or pending criminal charges, as I noted above45). And you may even think that the criminal justice system in the United States itself is too harsh. Given the high recidivism rate for criminals, however, the idea of flying criminals back to the United States is foolhardy, to put it mildly.
Perhaps some in this country might like the frisson of dodging even more dangerous criminals than we already have on a daily basis. Most Americans (citizens and legal immigrants alike) want their communities safe and orderly, though.
The fact is that, however, given the large number of sanctuary jurisdictions in the United States, and given that sanctuary laws only protect criminal aliens, the ideas in H.R. 5383 (other than the paid return of deported criminals) are in effect today — H.R. 5383 simply puts a face, and legal sanction, on them all.46
And bills don’t write themselves. Drafters intend them to become law. Given the opportunity, the sponsor and 44 cosponsors of H.R. 5383 (and likely several others who haven’t taken the step of cosponsorship yet) will make it the law.
Then, we will all have to live with the consequences.
The Center for Immigration Studies is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit research organization founded in 1985. It is the nation’s only think tank devoted exclusively to research and policy analysis of the economic, social, demographic, fiscal, and other impacts of immigration on the United States.
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Dr. Rich Swierhttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngDr. Rich Swier2020-07-07 07:43:012020-07-07 07:50:04VIDEO: Democrats introduce 'New Way Forward Act' the Most Anti-American legislation in U.S. History
Mounting Evidence Points to Covid Refugees from Mexico as a Major Factor in Border-State Spikes
Evidence continues to mount that spikes in Covid cases in U.S. border states are due to successive waves of infected people fleeing Mexico’s dysfunctional and overwhelmed hospitals to get American medical care at least as much, if not more than, to the re-opening of those states’ economies.
This matters because officials in border states are beginning to base policy decisions for partial lock-downs on grounds that lifting them is what caused the spikes.
Although the states and hospitals do not release nationality or immigration status information, several Border Patrol agents told the Center for Immigration Studies that, per policy, they have been transporting to U.S. care facilities increasing numbers of illegal Central American border-crossers they apprehend who report Covid-like symptoms, as well as Cubans, Venezuelans, Ecuadorans, and other nationalities.
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s media relations office was not able confirm the extent to which that was happening, but did release the following statement regarding Border Patrol hospital runs such as those the agents described.
“CBP has longstanding procedures in place to ensure that the individuals we encounter are able to receive treatment from local health authorities or other medical professionals. All persons in CBP custody who meet the Center for Disease Control’s Covid-19 travel history and enhanced screening guidelines are being referred to the CDC or local health officials for additional screening. CBP takes all necessary precautions to ensure that no communicable diseases are spread across populations in custody.”
Earlier, the Washington Post, the New York Times, and the Wall Street Journal all reported a crush of infected people from Mexico coming over the Arizona and California borders, although the publications say all appear to be American expatriates, dual citizenship holders, and Mexican legal permanent residents.
States appear to be transporting many to interior facilities to keep bed space free on the border as the influx continues, adding to the impression that these imported patients were infected inside the United States due to lifting lock-downs rather than in Mexico, where few social distancing measures were implemented.
The Times and now Reuters have reported that California, for instance, has been airlifting Covid patients from “saturated” border clinics to hospitals in the state’s interior.
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Ann Corcoranhttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngAnn Corcoran2020-06-27 06:50:502020-06-27 06:51:15Could Illegal Aliens be Responsible for Jump in Chinese Virus Cases in Border States?
Reader Tom sent me a story from Sundance at the Conservative Treehouse about how Elijah Majak Buoi has been busy amassing millions of dollars meant to help small businesses survive the Chinese virus crisis.
The Conservative Treehouse story ishere. And the press release from the US Justice Department is here.
There is lots of coverage of the “man” who I am guessing is a ‘new American’ from Africa (Sudan maybe?), but I was searching for a story that might have a photo and found this one atUniversal Hub:
Area man charged with $2 million in coronavirus loan fraud
Federal prosecutors today charged a Winchester man with wire fraud for his four applications for federal loans aimed at helping small businesses continue to make payroll despite losses related to Covid-19, alleging he made up employee numbers and that the few employees he does have are all based in India.
According to a federal complaint unsealed today, Elijah Majak Buoi of Winchester was rejected for three of his applications for Paycheck Protection Program loans – which can be converted to grants – but was granted $2 million on the fourth, despite giving different employee and payroll numbers on the applications.
In addition to having Buoi arrested today, the US Attorney’s office is asking a judge to freeze his bank accounts so he cannot transfer the money he received out of the country. At his arraignment, a federal magistrate judge in Worcester set cash bail of $15,000.
The affidavit*** states that Buoi first filed a PPP application with Bank of America in April for $7.5 million, based on the 353 employees he said he had, all allegedly in Massachusetts. After the bank rejected his request, he tried again with three other lenders, asking each for $2 million, with his employee count on applications ranging from 18 to 96 employees.
The first two lenders also rejected his requests, but the final one, to which he claimed he had 96 US employees, approved his request and he had $2 million deposited in his Bank of America checking account earlier this month.
According to the affidavit, Buoi’s LinkedIn page says he has just five employees, and all are in India, making them ineligible for PPP coverage.
According to the affidavit, Buoi transferred some $1.2 million of the PPP payment from one Bank of America account to another and has withdrawn $27,000 of it – $20,000 in a wire transfer to India.
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Ann Corcoranhttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngAnn Corcoran2020-06-23 07:36:292020-06-23 07:42:25Boston “Man” Nabbed for Stealing Millions from the Paycheck Protection Program
Whenever you ask a member of the Left, why they hate President Trump, the Pavlovian response is normally, “Because he is dividing the country,” that he is “polarizing,” even labeling him the “Divider-in-Chief,” thereby painting him as a racist, a threat to the nation, and to the Constitution. This notion has been repeated so many times, it is now nothing more than a knee-jerk reaction. If you challenge these people to explain their rationale, the most likely response is, “He acts unpresidential.” The news media gladly endorses this premise and promotes its usage, but the question remains, is he really dividing the country? I simply do not see it.
I will not deny the president appeals more to the right, than the left, but it takes two to Tango, and it could be argued the division of the country widened more under President Obama, who appealed more to the Left and alienated conservatives. So much so, he refused to work with the Republican-led Congress at the time. We could track it back further to President Nixon’s Watergate investigation, or President Clinton’s impeachment, or the fundamental differences of President Carter vs. President Reagan, or the up-and-down differences between the Clinton/Bush/Obama administrations. No, the division in this country started well before President Trump, yet he is being blamed exclusively for it.
The Left and the news media encourage this notion of presidential divider. Just about every Democrat and media pundit have labeled him a, “Racist, Xenophobe, Homophobe, anti-feminist, Fascist, Nazi, etc.,” in the hopes these labels will somehow stick in the minds of voters. To a certain extent, they have, but mostly to the Left, and not the Right who simply does not buy it. Actually, use of these labels heightens anger issues on the Left, and the chasm between Left and Right grows larger.
President Trump is hardly any of these labels. For example, years ago his favor was frequently courted by black politicians who wanted donations for their political campaigns, which he gave, and his philanthropy for black related charities and projects, and again he gladly helped out. From this, he was awarded commendations from black organizations, such as the Muhammad Ali Entrepreneur Award (2007). However, since declaring his candidacy for President in 2015, the “racist” label somehow surfaced. The President has kidded he would still be popular with Democrat blacks today had he not decided to run for office.
If President Trump is guilty of anything, it is for running as an outsider against the Washington establishment, or as he refers to it as “The Swamp.” This includes politicians, bureaucrats, lobbyists, the press, et al, who have been grazing peacefully on the taxpayer for many years. Because he challenges the corporate culture of the nation’s capitol, it is no small wonder he faces stiff resistance from everyone, but President Trump is undeterred and continues to push forward to straighten out Washington.
The news media particularly dislikes this president as he resists their control. He is frequently misquoted and maligned by the press. So much so, he found it necessary to do an end-run around the media to get his message to the masses, using social media, such as Twitter. This exacerbated the relationship between the media and the president, but Mr. Trump had no alternative. While some people are offended by the tone of the President’s Tweets, his supporters find it refreshing as they applaud him for standing up to the tyrannical press.
Then we have the matter of far-left groups who are much more divisive than the President. Groups like “Black Lives Matter,” can easily be accused of being racist as they do not embrace all races and chafe at the mention of “All Lives Matter.” Other organizations, such as Antifa, are dedicated to the overthrow of the United States and have adopted destructive tactics. Unlike these organizations, the President does not advocate burning, looting, and attacking people, yet he is the one accused of dividing the nation.
Interestingly, I find these young zealots possess no sense of American history or Civics (not to mention World History). They are uneducated and unsophisticated in such topics. Consequently, their naiveté makes it easy to manipulate them and use their energy for destructive purposes, such as the removal or defacing of historical markers. Because of their limited education, they are also quick to malign Capitalism and embrace Socialism.
Nothing seems to set the Left off better than a “Make America Great Again” hat. People who wear MAGA hats in support of their president are automatically accused of being racist by the Left. What we are witnessing is their attempt to control the dialog and dictate morality through political correctness. They are so boisterous about this, you are dismissed out of hand and not allowed to refute their argument. Clearly these are tactics of harassment and a genuine threat to freedom of speech. From the Left’s perspective, their sense of morality is the only thing that matters, and everyone else’s interpretation is evil and should be snuffed out. This too divides the country further.
Again, if the president is guilty of anything, it is that of being an outsider determined to bring pragmatic solutions to Washington DC, and the people there do not like it, as such, they zealously undermine him every step of the way. If this includes misleading the public, so be it. Make no mistake, we are embroiled in a cultural revolution, and when one person pushes, the whole organization pushes back.
No, President Trump is not a “Divider-in-Chief,” that is a complete misnomer. He is the one person standing up for the American taxpayer and wants to return some sanity to our government after several years of erosion. The Washington establishment wants to see him gone and will go to any lengths to take him down. They have tried to assassinate his character through the Russia investigation, which led to a pseudo impeachment trial; accused him of incompetence during the Coronavirus panic, and now assail his leadership during this time of racial tension and police conduct. However, we are now less than five months away from our presidential elections. If you think it has been a nasty fight thus far, you haven’t seen anything yet, as new charges and allegations will be leveled against the President from the Left. It will get worse before it gets better, but the president will stand his ground and fight back with the help of his supporters.
It’s going to be a long, hot summer and the demonstrators will not go away anytime soon as they hold the spotlight of the press. No, it is not President Trump who is trying to divide the country, it is the Left who is Hell-bent on his destruction, and the USA as we have known it.
One last note, the concept of “acting unpresidential” keeps buzzing through my head. Do we elect people to “act” or to take charge, make the tough decisions and get things done? I’ll take results over facade anytime, but I guess this is simply too divisive.
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Tim Brycehttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngTim Bryce2020-06-23 07:09:102020-06-23 08:21:55PODCAST: Who is Really Dividing the Country?
Never let a good crisis go to waste! Leftwing agitators are milking the death of George Floyd for all it is worth.
Just this morning someone sent me news about theSunrise Movement,ostensibly a green new deal group, that is also out stirring up unrest that you can only assume was planned well in advance of the Minneapolis meltdown.
One wonders if Floyd hadn’t died what fuse were they planning to light to ignite the 2020 (election year) revolution.
Dreamers Arrested in Protests Helped Those who “Were There to Commit Crime and Damage”
Illegal immigrants protected by an Obama-era amnesty for adults who came to the U.S. as children are among the rioters arrested and charged with crimes in Arizona. One of them, 30-year-old Mexican illegal alien Maxima Guerrero, is a community organizer with a Phoenix-based grassroots migrant justiceorganization called Puente Movement.
She has been shielded from deportation under Obama’s controversial program known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) since 2013. The former president issued the DACA executive order after Congress repeatedly rejected legislation offering illegal immigrants similar protections. The failed measure was called Development Relief and Education for Alien Minors (DREAM Act) and DACA recipients are often called “Dreamers.”
More than 100,000 DACA applicants have criminal histories, according to figures released late last year by the U.S. government. Many have been arrested for serious crimes such as murder, rape and driving under the influence. The government can deport those charged with crimes, immediately stripping them of the Obama protections but that rarely occurs.
The recent Phoenix arrestees were apprehended in the course of criminal behavior, according to a local news report and information obtained by Judicial Watch from police sources on the ground. Guerrero and two other Dreamers were out rioting and looting in a “Justice for George Floyd” protest in downtown Phoenix, city police sources tell Judicial Watch.
Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams said this in the media about the vehicles occupied by the arrested Dreamers: “Those cars were used to fortify and give rocks and water bottles, food to those individuals who were there to commit crime and damage, to do dangerous things to our community.”
The information is especially relevant considering the source is an open borders advocate. A few years ago Williams, who joined protestors in downtown Phoenix, tried to make her law enforcement agency an illegal immigrant sanctuary at the request of a leftist group.
Judicial Watch obtained records of a secret meeting in 2017 in which the police chief of Arizona’s largest city took orders from Will Goana, policy director for the state chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).
Continue reading here. There are links to supporting documents and other information.
http://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.png00Robert Spencerhttp://drrich.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/logo_264x69.pngRobert Spencer2020-05-22 05:18:372020-05-22 05:21:34Ramadan in Texas: Shooter at Corpus Christi Naval Air Station identified as Adam Salim Alsahli
When it comes to Islam, Facebook seems unable to get things right. It has made life more difficult for sober islamocritics such as Robert Spencer, censoring their content, while favoring those who attempt to deflect such criticism with charges of “racism” and “Islamophobia.”
Recently Mark Zuckerberg decided it would be a good thing – Diversity! Inclusivity! — to appoint the Yemeni journalist and political activist Tawakkol Karman to the Content Oversight Board of Facebook, a position where she will be well-placed to protect Islam and Muslims from their critics. It is not only those islamocritics who are up in arms at Karman’s appointment, but a great many Muslims are horrified as well. For Tawakkol Karman is not only a Muslim, but a fervent admirer of the Muslim Brotherhood.
To many around the world, Tawakkol Abdel-Salam Khalid Karman is known as the first Arab woman — and the second Muslim woman — to win a Nobel Prize, for Peace, in 2011. She won the prize for several reasons. First, there is her record of “activism,” which some may find underwhelming. In Yemen, she campaigned against systemic repression by the government, and demanded inquiries into corruption and other forms of social and legal injustice. In 2005, she founded an organization, Women Journalists Without Chains (WJWC), to help train women in media skills, and to promote the work of female journalists in Yemen. WJWC also produces regular reports on human rights abuses in Yemen, so far documenting more than 50 cases of attacks and what it claims are unfair sentences against newspapers and writers. In 2007, Tawakkol began organizing weekly protests in Yemen’s capitol, Sana’a, against government mismanagement. She also shows up regularly at Change Square, where she holds court inside a tent when not haranguing her followers outside.
Karman is not shy about proclaiming her own greatness. At the “Official Website of Tawakkol Karman,” you will find listed (I haven’t corrected the English) some of her Outstanding Achievements:
The lady of year 2011 according to the readers and subscribers of Yahoo website;
One of the Top 100 Global Thinkers selected by the Foreign Policy Magazine;
Among the most strongest 100 Arab women;
Awarded the Courage Award by the Embassy of United States of America, Sana’a in 2008;
One of the seven women who change the history for the year of 2009;
Member of Transparency International’s Advisory Council;
Member of High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post 2015 Development;
She granted the honorary degree of doctor of law from Alberta University-Canada
It has been suggested that the main reason she was chosen to share the 2011 Peace Prize with two other women, both from Liberia — the Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Leybah Gbowee, a “peace-and-women’s-rights-activist” – is that the Nobel Peace Prize Committee was that year under pressure to find a Muslim female recipient and Tawakkol Karman fit the bill, checking all the right boxes as a fighter “against governmental suppression” of dissent and as a “promoter of women’s rights.”
What the Nobel Peace Prize committee did not know, or did not care about, was that Karman held a senior position in Yemen’s Al-Islah Party, an affiliate of the Muslim Brotherhood known for its extremist and violent agenda. In 2013, she was a strong supporter of Mohamad Morsi, the Muslim Brotherhood member who became, briefly, the President of Egypt. She wrote an article in Foreign Policy about Egypt; her title says it all: “Mohamed Morsi is the Arab World’s Nelson Mandela.”
Aside from being a senior member of the Al-Islah Party, which had strong ties to the MB, Karman also had ties to the Brotherhood’s Yemeni branch, an Islamist movement founded by Abdul Majeed Al-Zindani, a man who appears in Washington’s Specially Designated Global Terrorist list. She claims to have severed those ties to the MB in Yemen, but many wonder whether her move was merely a cosmetic exercise to deceive gullible Westerners.
The story of Tawakkol Karman’s appointment to the Content Advisory Board at Facebook is at Arab News:
Unsurprisingly, Facebook’s choice has prompted outrage on social media networks, with many worried that it will bring the Muslim Brotherhood’s ideas right into the heart of the biggest social networking company in the world.
“She has not denounced the extremist ideology of the Muslim Brotherhood,” Ghanem Nuseibeh, founder of risk consultancy Cornerstone Global Associates, told Arab News.
“On the contrary, there is everything [sic] to believe that she continues to espouse the hate speech that has been a mark of the Brotherhood in general.”
Given her prominent role in the revolution that toppled Yemen’s former leader Ali Abdullah Saleh, Karman’s Nobel Prize is not without merit, say political analysts. But they add that her advocacy of extremist causes can hardly be glossed over.
“Karman was considered a symbol of the Yemeni revolution against the rule of Saleh, but over time she has become associated with intolerance, discrimination and lack of neutrality,” Hani Nasira, a terrorism and extremism expert, told Arab News.
Soon after Karman was awarded the Nobel Prize, she was invited to Doha and [was] personally congratulated by Yusuf Al-Qaradawi, the Muslim Brotherhood leader and preacher of hate, whose fatwas call for suicide bomb attacks and who praises Hitler for “punishing” the Jews.
After conveying to her his message of “support” for the Yemeni people, Al-Qaradawi gave Karman a copy of his book, “Fiqh Al-Jihad,” as a gift.
Such easy rapport with a personality as controversial as Al-Qaradawi calls into question Karman’s political beliefs, despite her ostensible split with the Brotherhood’s Yemeni branch.
It also rings the alarm about the judgement of Facebook, a social networking behemoth that claims to be an unbiased arbiter of international political discourse.
Facebook has never been an “unbiased arbiter” when it comes to Islam. It has consistently privileged defenders of the faith, and made life difficult — by taking down posts or making them impossible to find – for islamocritics. It is not surprising that a Muslim Brotherhood admirer such as Tawakkol Karman would be appointed to Facebook’s Content Oversight Board; Facebook either does not know, or more likely does not care, about Karman’s dangerous liaisons.
“We understand that people will identify with some of our members and disagree passionately with others,” a Facebook Oversight Board spokesperson told Arab News.
“Board members were chosen to represent diverse perspectives and backgrounds that can help with addressing the most significant content decisions facing a global community.”
Would Facebook place a strong supporter of President Trump on the Content Oversight Board, to increase its diversity and inclusivity? Or a supporter of Matteo Salvini in Italy, or of Marine Le Pen in France, or of Victor Orban in Hungary? What about a supporter of Prime Minister Netanyahu? No, I didn’t think so either. They’re all, you see, “extremists.” Unlike Tawakkol Karman.
Facebook declined to respond to specific questions regarding Karman’s links to extremist groups. But clearly the platform has put its credibility on the line by bringing her on board.
Facebook “risks becoming the platform of choice for extremist Islamist ideology,” Nuseibeh, who is also chair of UK-based nonprofit Muslims Against Anti-Semitism, told Arab News.
“With Karman’s appointment, Facebook’s argument that it is an impartial platform is severely weakened. There is no guarantee that Karman will not have a direct editorial influence on what Facebook allows to be published.
“Would Facebook, for example, appoint Aung San Suu Kyi, another Nobel laureate, to arbitrate in disputes over posts related to the Rohingya atrocities in Myanmar?”
Nuseibeh added: “Karman, to much of the world, is what Aung San Suu Kyi is to the Rohingyas.”
Karman’s abrasive personality became evident during the Arab Spring protests, which began with Tunisia’s “Jasmine Revolution” in 2011 before spreading out to other Arab countries including Yemen.
Previous Yemeni protest leaders who had aligned with her called her “dictatorial,” someone who went against the consensus of peaceful movements by urging young protesters to march on in the face of imminent danger.
“She called for that march, the police brutally attacked it and 13 people died,” one protest organizer who declined to be named told Reuters in 2011.
“She didn’t apologize for it and it really upset a lot of people.”
She was willing to sacrifice her young followers – sending them on a march that previous protest leaders opposed because of the “imminent danger” posed to the marchers by the police – for no other reason than to promote herself as a protest leader. Tawakkol Karman, of course, never marched in these protests; that would have been too dangerous.
Tawakkol Karman is a supporter of Qatar, the Arab world’s staunchest supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood, and of Turkey, which under President Erdogan has become the other main promoter of the Brotherhood’s agenda..
In recent years, Karman’s utterances have tended to hew closely to the party line of her two leading patrons, Qatar and Turkey, while being reflexively critical of the actions of Saudi Arabia.
For instance, in an interview with the Saudi daily Al Riyadh in 2015, Karman praised the Arab coalition and its role in restoring the UN-backed government in Yemen.
She called it a “savior” and posed for a picture with President Abd-Rabbo Mansour Hadi, who she described as “the legitimate leader of the country.”
At that time she was supporting Saudi Arabia and UAE in the help they gave the internationally recognized government in Sana’a, led by Abd-Rabbo Mansour Hadi. But that did not last long.
A few years later, she suddenly changed her tone to accuse Saudi Arabia and the UAE of committing war crimes in Yemen, and demanded the toppling of regimes in Egypt and Bahrain.
It was no coincidence that all the four countries she denounced happened to have cut diplomatic ties with Qatar on June 5, 2017, for its refusal to abandon support for extremists.
She turned on Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt, and Bahrain for the same reason: all four had cut ties to Qatar, because that state had consistently shown support for the extremist Muslim Brotherhood, whose cause was also dear to Tawakkol Karman’s heart. Had Facebook known of her passionate attachment to the MB, would they have had second thoughts about naming her to the Content Oversight Board? One likes to think so.
“Karman’s loyalty to, and association with, governments that flout all norms of democracy, such as Qatar and Turkey, deprives her of any claim to neutrality and objectivity,” Nasira said.
Her political rhetoric encourages extremism, divisiveness and shunning of those who disagree with her current loyalties.
Numerous posts on her Twitter handle and Facebook page attest to her desire to see specific Arab governments destabilized and toppled.
She has called on Bahraini, Algerian and Tunisian citizens to revolt against their governments, and accused the Egyptian army of being full of terrorists.
Again, Karman is consistent in her support of the Muslim Brotherhood. Bahrain, Algeria, and Tunisia have all come down hard on the MB, and therefore, in her view, the people of those countries must overthrow their governments, and the rulers she deems insufficiently “Islamic” in their views. The Egyptian army, which is engaged in a endless battle with MB, is described – in Karman’s customary hyperbole – as “being full of terrorists.” The Egyptian army is ruthless, all right, in its pursuit of MB members, but no one could fairly describe it as “being full of terrorists.”
“Saudi Arabia should be worried. All the Gulf countries should be scared, except for Qatar,” Karman can be heard saying in an undated video clip broadcast by Yemen TV.
The Gulf Arabs should be “worried” about what? Karman means they should be worried about popular uprisings, for according to her, except for Qatar, they have lost the support of their people. No evidence is presented for this. There have been no popular protests against the governments in Saudi Arabia (save for a small group of Shi’a, who briefly rioted eight years ago), the Emirates, Kuwait, Oman, or elsewhere among the Gulf Arab states. There have been violent protests in Qatar, however, in 2019, by the migrant workers who could no longer stand the abuse they endured from their employers, nor could they tolerate the widespread practice of employers withholding their wages. Qatar’s reputation for such mistreatment apparently doesn’t bother that Nobel-winning “rights activist” Tawakkol Karman. As long as Qatar supports the MB, its abuse of foreign workers doesn’t concern her. Besides, those discontented foreign workers in Qatar are not Arabs, and Tawakkol Karman is both an Islamist and an Arab supremacist.
Karman’s unremitting hostility towards Saudi Arabia and the UAE has made her almost a natural choice for stewardship of the Qatari-funded and Turkey-based Belqees TV station.
The consensus view of many Middle East political observers is that Karman is an Islamist activist who is firmly embedded within regional and international networks backed by Qatar and Turkey.
“Karman is an extremely divisive figure whose judgement is severely impaired by her many years of (harboring) extreme political bias,” says Nuseibeh.
As for Facebook, the company “has only one choice to make and that is to sever all ties” with Karman, he told Arab News.
“If it doesn’t, Facebook would be on the side of promoters of hate speech, extremism and anti-Semitism.”
Facebook likely had no knowledge of Tawakkol Karman’s connection to Qatar and to the Muslim Brotherhood when it offered her a position on the Content Oversight Board. It’s a company worth $600 billion, but it couldn’t spare the money or take the time to conduct due diligence on Karman before appointing her to such an important post. It might have taken a Facebook employee five minutes – no more – to conduct an online search that would have revealed the disturbing sympathies of Tawakkol Karman for the Muslim Brotherhood. The company had decided it would be a good idea to have a Muslim and, even better, a Muslim woman – More Diversity! More Inclusivity! — on the Content Oversight Board as one of Facebook’s internal censors. Karman fit the bill. And she had won a Nobel Peace Prize. Mark Zuckerberg knows that Nobel Peace Prize winners are, by common consent, among our Great and Good. Yes, I grant you, there is Arafat… That’s all Facebook knew about her – Muslim, female, Nobel winner — and that was apparently all it needed to know. Muslim, female, Nobel winner — what’s not to like?
As an unswerving supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood, Karman certainly is a promoter, as Ghanem Nuseibeh says, of “hate speech, extremism, and antisemitism.” Simply take a look at the best-known MB website, that of Hamas, which is the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, for prompt confirmation of its “hate speech, extremism, and antisemitism.” Or consider Tawakkol Karman’s warm meeting in Doha with Yusuf al-Qaradawi, the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, whose fatwas call for suicide bomb attacks and who praises Hitler for “punishing” the Jews.
Is that what Mark Zuckerberg wants on his Content Oversight Board? Someone who admires a man who calls for suicide bomb attacks and praises Hitler for “punishing” the Jews? Or will there be signs of sanity yet, and an invitation withdrawn, from the head office at 1 Hacker Way in Menlo Park?