“We just want to go back!”

If you are thinking I’m writing (again!) about the many unhappy Iraqi refugees who want to go home (from the US) to the Middle East, you would be wrong.   We have been told repeatedly in the mainstream media that this phenomenon—refugees wanting to go home— is a new one caused by our present recession (the worst since the Great Depression).

However, this has happened before and in a very big way.  This is a story from the New York Times, TEN YEARS AGO NEXT MONTH!   This is about Kosovars brought to the US by the thousands in 1999, and returned to Kosovo by the thousands later that year—at taxpayer expense!

”The conditions that I live in here are much better than what I’ll find back home,” said Mr. Selmani, who was interviewed on Sunday through a translator at the Westway Motel in Queens. For seven weeks, after leaving a temporary refugee center at Fort Dix, N.J,, his family had stayed in spacious houses in Bridgeport and Waterbury, Conn. Last week, they moved to the motel to wait for a flight at Kennedy Airport. ”But simply, I love Kosovo more than anything else and more than any other country,” he explained.

Thousands of homesick and frustrated Kosovo refugees have received approval to return through a program financed by the Department of State. Flights from Kennedy Airport are being coordinated by the International Organization for Migration, a humanitarian group in Geneva.

Many families like the Selmanis say they want to go home to rebuild their lives in their own country — not someone else’s. And some families left behind mothers and fathers, husbands and wives, and sons and daughters.

”We just want to go back,” said Merita Mita, 42….

Many loved their homeland so much  that they wanted to go back to where they were culturally comfortable.   I wonder that the do-gooders are so quick to yank people out of the place they call home and do it in the name of humanitarianism.  We’ve often wondered aloud here if this isn’t more about how the refugee resettlement people want to make themselves feel good about their “work,” then it is about what is best for the “refugees.”

Ho hum, no jobs even when we weren’t in a recession.

But still other refugees — especially those who cannot speak English — say the tiring struggle to find jobs and make ends meet in the United States finally made the decision for them to return to Kosovo.

”For 10 days, I was eating food on the floor because we didn’t have a place to sit,” said Agron Agushi, 45, who is taking his mother, wife and two young sons back to Pristina tomorrow after spending a month in the Bronx. ”We heard about the return program and we applied. We couldn’t take it anymore. I could not even get a job.”

What do you know—broken promises too!

In some cases, the refugees say that their frustration and disappointment with the harder-than-expected transition to everyday American life has made them want to return to Kosovo. Many say that Government officials promised them that they would move into their own homes, start English lessons and be placed in jobs and schools right away.

”Nobody kept their word about what they told us, and we’re very angry at what happened,” said Minire Xhakli, 40, who has lived in temporary housing in Elizabeth, N.J., for nearly two months with her husband and five children.

 In the end, home trumped America.   It is a lesson we all should heed—home matters, culture matters!   People want to live among those that share their same values!

….. for other refugees, even a successful life in America cannot replace the one they left behind.

So let’s see, we brought around 15,000 Kosovars here and the word is that 10,000 returned to Kosovo.  They came at taxpayers expense and they went home at taxpayers expense.   Inbetween the Top Ten government contractors were paid for their work (by the taxpayer).

I really wanted to see how the return airfares were paid, so I checked the 1999 ORR annual report to Congress.  I didn’t find the airfares but the contractors shared in over $3 million in Kosovar Refugee Emergency Grants (here) that year.

Reform needed!   Refugees should be made aware that they are free to return to their home countries and there should be a special fund established to help them return.  The annual report to Congress should inform the public about how many refugees choose to leave the US each year (and what volag resettled them in the first place).

NumbersUSA needs your help today! So do legal American workers!

We just received an urgent request  from Numbers USA for help with a petition to save American workers’ jobs.  They are aiming for 100,000 signers each day! 

Our side won some key amendments to the Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill and we need to keep them from being stripped from the bill!

Last week, the Senate overwhelmingly passed provisions to make E-Verify mandatory, complete the border fence and move forward with no-match letters, so sign the petition NOW to keep these provisions in the bill!

To learn more go here.  To sign the petition and help get hundreds of thousands of signatures to show the Obama Administration how important this is to you, sign the petition today by following the link above and tell all your friends.

Why were the Somali boys so receptive to the call of Allah?

Adding to Ann’s post, NYT feature article on Somalis today—it is about the call of Allah, the Times story shows, perhaps inadvertently, why these boys were so receptive to the call of Allah. Jerry Gordon talks about their recruitment at a radical mosque in his commentary on the NYT story, and as he says that’s something that has to be looked into further by the government, and not shoved under the rug.

But why did they become susceptible to the call of Allah? Some clues are provided by the descriptions of the boys as teenagers. For example:

If the adults kept their distance from American culture, their children had little choice but to dive in.

At Roosevelt, Mr. Ahmed was a quick study. He memorized Ice Cube’s lyrics. He practiced for hours on neighborhood basketball courts. He took note of the clothing and vernacular of his African-American classmates, emulating what he could.

His pants sagged, but never too much. He spoke of “homeboys” and used the “n” word, but gave careful regard to the school’s rules. When a classmate’s purse was stolen, it was Mr. Ahmed who dutifully turned in the thief.

Much as he tried, he failed to fit in.

You’re not black, his peers taunted. Go back to Africa.

The boys were not interested in Somali politics. They wanted to fit in with the other kids, as most teenagers do. But what was there to fit in with? A toxic culture of rap music and alienation, ignorance and criminality. And an insular culture, that didn’t accept outsiders no matter what their skin color.

At the root of the problem was a “crisis of belonging,” said Mohamud Galony, a science tutor who was friends with Mr. Ahmed and is the uncle of another boy who left. Young Somalis had been raised to honor their families’ tribes, yet felt disconnected from them. “They want to belong, but who do they belong to?” said Mr. Galony, 23.

In the kind of schools these kids had to attend, I am certain there was nothing taught about American culture and history. In days past, immigrants were assimilated through their children, who learned English, American customs (which were far more uniform), standards of behavior, the greatness of America, national heroes and holidays, and so on. That’s what my father and his siblings learned, coming from a poverty-stricken Yiddish-speaking home and all ending up professionals.

But after decades of work by the left in the schools, kids learn to see America as a collection of groups, ethnic, racial, economic, sexual, and whatever other divisions they can come up with. There is nothing there for them, no higher vision than their own group and their own pleasures, as stunted as these are. If they don’t come from homes who can give them something more, then they have nothing, no culture worthy of the name.

When Ethiopa invaded and occupied Somalia,

These events triggered a political awakening among young Somalis in Minneapolis. They had long viewed their homeland’s problems as hopelessly clan-based, but the Ethiopian campaign simplified things. Here was an external enemy against which young Somalis could unite.

Spurred by a newfound sense of nationalism, college students distributed T-shirts emblazoned with the Somali flag and held demonstrations during a frigid Minnesota winter.

The protests took on a religious dimension as well. While the United States had defended the Ethiopian invasion as a front in the global war on terrorism, many Somalis saw it as a Christian crusade into a Muslim land. They were outraged at reports of Ethiopian troops raping Somali women, looting mosques and killing civilians.

The NYT story doesn’t put nearly enough emphasis on the role of the mosque, which all along was trying to radicalize the young people. But what is clear is that the kids were looking for an idealistic cause, something larger than their unsatisfactory daily lives, in the mold of young people everywhere. And here was a cause that was sanctioned, indeed encouraged, by their religion, and called for all the sacrifice that an idealistic young person could want.

As we’ve seen, many of the older Somalis are not in favor of what the kids did, and some are absolutely outraged by it. What a good sign that is. Although they lead difficult lives, and many have little more idea about American history and ideals than their children do, the adults understand that here they have a chance to build a life, and in signing up with the jihad they would have no such chance.  What a terrible thing it is that there is so little to help immigrants assimilate, and that poor immigrants have to live in such a toxic culture that their only hope for a decent life is to cling to their own community and their old ways.

For new readers, we have followed the Somali missing youths story since last November, see links here to all of our posts on the topic.

4th Somali-American dead in Somalia, called the “recruiter” in yesterday’s NYT article

Update July 14th:  Note that Mr. Maruf’s sister has left a comment, I write about it here.

Oh my gosh, unbelievable!  The 4th Somali-American missing from Minneapolis is dead in Somalia.   Zakaria Maruf died Saturday according to the Star Tribune this morning.  Hat tip: a friend from Tennessee.

I just wrote about Maruf last night, here, in response to the lengthy discussion about him by Andrea Elliot at the New York Times also yesterday.

From the Star Tribune:

For the second time in two days, a Somali man from Minneapolis has been reported killed in his war-torn homeland, a relative confirmed Sunday.

Zakaria Maruf, 30, who is believed to have been among the first wave of young Somali men to leave Minnesota for Somalia over the past two years, was killed Saturday in Mogadishu, the relative said.

Maruf is the fourth Somali man from the Twin Cities to have died in Somalia since October.

The NYT story called Maruf the “recruiter.”   Here is a bio of him and several others of the missing youths from the NYT yesterday.  This is what I reported last night that he said in an interview some months ago:

In the interview, Maruf implies that his participation in the fighting was motivated by religion, not patriotism. Maruf said he and his friends heard the call of Allah, and they accepted it.

Makes you wonder, doesn’t it, did Mr. Maruf talk too much?  I guess his “recruiting” days are over (if he ever really was the recruiter)!

For new readers, we have followed the Somali missing youths story since last November, see links here to all of our posts on the topic.

Will we be taking more of Iraq’s minorities?

Here is a little story put out by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) that got me wondering if we were going to add more of Iraq’s minority populations to our resettlement plans, in addition to the 1350 Palestinians we heard about early last week.  I have more questions then answers after reading this:

BAGHDAD (AFP) — Almost 200 Iranian-Kurd refugees have been moved from a makeshift camp on the Iraq-Jordan border to a larger camp near Syria, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) said on Wednesday.


“The group composed of 186 refugees has been temporarily relocated to Al Waleed refugee camp, on Iraq?s border with Syria,” it said.

Al Waleed is one of the camps we have come to know as a “Palestinian” camp with miserable living conditions (or so the refugee industry lobbyists say).   Is this the strategy, move people to miserable camps then tell the world they live in misery and need to be resettled to the West?

Incidentally, these are internally displaced people and I’m wondering if we are establishing a  pattern here—-are we going to be in the business of helping other countries sort out their minority problems by moving them to the US, as we are with the Palestinians?

And then this:

UNHCR figures published last August said Iraq had more than 42,000 non-Iraqi refugees, mainly Palestinians, Turks, and Iranians (Kurds and Arabs), and some Syrians, Sudanese and Somalis.

Why are all these people with different ethnic backgrounds classified as “refugees” if they are still in Iraq, surely they didn’t all just arrive there from elsewhere—who in their right mind would arrive in Iraq these days seeking asylum?

Please don’t tell me we (with our buddies in the UN) are helping Iraq get rid of minorities—helping it toward ethnic and religious purity of sorts?

Endnote:  We are already helping purify Iraq of its religious minorities, but those listed in the 42,000 number would be mostly Muslims and we all know how charitable Muslims are to their fellow Muslims, right!