Blacks beat up Burmese and Bhutanese refugees in Syracuse

Update July 19th:  Two former refugee police officers will help new refugees, here.


Here is yet another story about the beauty of diversity in America.   From the Post-Standard:

Syracuse, NY — Eight men attacked Hari Rizai while he was walking on Syracuse’s North Side. The attack landed the 22-year-old in the emergency room with swollen eyes and blood gushing from his nose.

Six men attacked two brothers, Ganga and Taro Odari, on Lodi Street. One man pulled out a knife; another punched the brothers in the face and head.

Ten teens pushed Star Toe, 51, to the ground while trying to steal his 9-year-old son’s bike. They spat on his wife, Kyi Toe, when she tried to retrieve their son’s bike. “We feel angry,” Kyi Toe said. “We’re scary. We’re afraid to walk alone.”


These Burmese and Bhutanese refugees and others say they are under attack on the city’s North Side. Some people throw rocks at them, and refugee children say they sometimes are attacked when they get off the school bus or ride their bikes or skateboards. Refugees say they are afraid to walk the streets alone.

Rizai, the Bhutanese refugee attacked on the North Side, said his eyeglasses broke when he was punched repeatedly in the face and head last November in the 800 block of Butternut Street. The attack left his vision in his right eye impaired, he said.

“They hit me and ran away,” he said. “I feel fear to walk the streets at all times. When I see black guys, I get afraid.” 

The Odari brothers, who lived in a refugee camp in Nepal for 17 years, said they came to America in March because this country is a safe haven. But they fear for their lives because of the attacks on them and other refugees.

“We came to America to get freedom. We didn’t think we would get beaten,” said Ganga Odari, 34.

“I’m so frustrated, I don’t feel any peace and security,” said Tora Odari, 26. “I don’t have any guarantee for my life. I’m too afraid of them.”

I’m too tired to get into a big yak about this tonight.   We have written many many times about American blacks not liking refugees; and about refugee resettlement agencies persisting in placing new arrivals in crime-ridden neighborhoods.   Until there is some huge problem (I guess it’s going to take more than beatings and robberies) no one will be willing to discuss how important maintaining one’s culture is (even black city culture) and how people are threatened by newcomers, no matter who they are!

Here is one explanation put forth in this article that could be a problem somewhat lessened if refugee resettlement wasn’t done so secretively and communities received full briefings (IN ADVANCE) on what the refugees do get from the government and their federal contractors,  and what they don’t get.  I know where I lived the complete lack of transparancy in the program resulted in much misunderstanding.

Some of the tensions stem from economics, she said. African Americans who have experienced racial discrimination for decades feel that refugees are getting more help from the government than they got.

I see in the article there is some effort being made to have little multicultural hand holding sessions, or whatever you want to call them, but virtually nothing is done by the agencies (in the Syracuse case it looks like Catholic Charities and some affiliate of Church World Service)  in advance to head off problems and that is where the reform needs to be.

Be sure to check out the over 150 comments posted at this article in the Post-Standard.

Al Shabab: Tapping into a wave of Islamic extremism

If you have been following our extensive coverage of the Minneapolis missing Somali youths closely, this story, reported by the Christian Science Monitor today, about the life and death of Tawakal Ahmed, a Somali boy from Kenya, is going to sound terribly (tragically) familiar.   Ahmed is dead in Somalia and his family has no idea who killed him—possibly Al-Shabab Islamists themselves.

The boys family and friends blame his radicalization on the local mosque.  Experts are quoted as saying that they don’t think the recruitment is coming directly from some organized effort within Al-Shabab (sometimes spelled Al-Shabaab)  in Somalia, but from a worldwide trend toward radicalization—-radicalization that is happening at mosques!

“Sometimes Al Shabab’s work is done for them by others, unwittingly,” says Rashid Abdi, a Kenyan-Somali analyst at the Nairobi field office of the International Crisis Group. “Al Shabab is basically tapping into a wave, a radicalization phenomenon which is happening in the Muslim world.”

I could make a joke here and suggest this will soon be ending because Obama gave his Cairo speech, but I won’t because it won’t.  The American Al-Shabab has already laughed at Obama, here.

Lots of money in this effort:

The relative wealth displayed by those who control the mosques also leaves some residents suspicious. “Whether it’s coming from the Middle East or Mars, I don’t know,” says Milgo Ahmed, Tawakal’s older cousin. “But money is there. Money is being poured all over the place. That is how our children are being used and taken away.”

Let’s see, who has money in the Middle East?  Oh, yeh, Saudi Arabia.  Funny, isn’t it Saudi Arabia that is pouring money into US mosques too?

Lots of intimidation going on too.  In the US you probably won’t get shot, just CAIR (Council on American Islamic Relations) will be sicced on you!

Anyone who preaches against these people will be shot.


Despite their fear, Tawakal’s friends and family say the only way to fight this perceived encroachment on their town and their vision of Islam is to speak out. “After losing him, we started to understand the magnitude of this thing – of a young man being poached to do bad things in the name of helping his family,” Metro says.

Are you seeing the parallels to Minneapolis?  Family in Kenya says people must speak up; families in US say the same thing.   Or else:

Ms. Ahmed, Tawakal’s cousin, worries for the five recent graduates in her home who seem to have no opportunity for the future: “Tawakal is dead. He will no longer come [back]. But many, many other Tawakals are going to have the same fate if the international community does not take action,” she says.

Her family feels helpless, she says, with no protection from extremists and nowhere to turn. Complaints to Kenyan authorities fall on deaf ears.

“We are in big trouble,” Ahmed says. “We have nowhere to go…. Our children are not safe.”

Ditto for Minneapolis and possibly other American cities.


Being a movie extra beats cleaning toilets

The Voice of America reports on a new film on the war in Iraq, The Hurt Locker, which was filmed in Jordan.

The new film from director Kathryn Bigelow captures the day-to-day life-and-death drama drawn from real experiences of a US Army bomb disposal squad in the Iraq war. Here’s a look at The Hurt Locker.

IED’s – improvised explosive devices – have been a deadly fact of life on the highways and dusty side streets of Iraq. When one is found, they call in the highly skilled volunteers of the elite EOD – explosive ordnance disposal – squad.

They don’t call it ‘the world’s most dangerous job’ for nothing. The margin for error is zero; and there is more to worry about than just the IED, with snipers and insurgents often lying in wait.

After examining the device with a remote-control robot, a member of the team suits up in protective armor and attempts to disarm the bomb.

The screenplay was written by a journalist who was embedded with a bomb disposal unit in Iraq, and the director tried to capture the constantly threatening environment as well as the physical conditions.  So they filmed in Jordan, in locations which were similar to Iraq.

“You can’t fake that amount of heat,” [co-star] Mackie says. “You can’t fake that sand. You can’t fake the people. When you are on set and all of the extras are Iraqi refugees, it really informs the movie that you’re making. When you start hearing the stories from a true perspective, not from CNN or Fox News, but from a perspective of people who were actually there, it gives you a clear viewpoint of where you are as an artist and the story you would like to tell. It was a great experience to be there.”

Another actor says the film is non-political, unlike other films about the Iraq war, which were box-office bombs. I guess now that George W. Bush is out of office it’s okay for Hollywood to admit that there are a lot of dramatic stories to be told about the war. Look at all the WWII films that are still watched today. They’re about the actual battles and the conditions of the war, not about politics.

So maybe Hollywood will make more such films. And maybe these will provide more work for Iraqi refugees. It’s surely more interesting to be a movie extra than to be unemployed or cleaning toilets in America.

Comment worth noting: we hear from Maruf’s sister

For new readers this may be getting a little complicated, but we have been following the case of the Somali missing youths since it first became public knowledge back in November and this is a very important turn of events in the story.

Yesterday we learned that the 4th Somali to leave Minneapolis and join al-Shabaab, Zakaria Maruf, is reportedly dead in Somalia.   It looks like the second and third young men to die may have been killed by their Jihadi handlers possibly to keep them quiet, and I will report as soon as I see news about how Maruf may have died.

Who are the recruiters in the US and who paid the boys’ airfares back to Africa?  That is the crucial question, the question the FBI is trying to answer.  Family and friends of the dead men are pointing a finger at the local mosque and are accusing CAIR (Council on American Islamic Relations) of trying to sidetrack the investigation.  See my post here on how the families need help!

On Sunday, the New York Times feature story fingered Zakaria Maruf as the “recruiter.”  I suggested here that it sounded like he was being made the “fall guy.”   Well, if it is true that he is now dead, possibly killed by Al-Shabaab, I guess that would throw the NYT theory out the window.  Here MPR yesterday also suggests he was recruiting.   He might have been a talker and a bragger but he sure doesn’t sound like the mastermind.  So who told the NYT reporter that he was the “recruiter?”

Last night we had a comment from Maruf’s sister, Nabila Maruf, who confirms that her brother had no money and no real knowledge of Somalia before leaving for Africa.  She appears to be saying there is no way he was any sort of key figure in this, so again, who told the NYT that he was?

My brother did’t know anything about back home. When we left home, he was very little at the time. so what would he be fighting for? He knew the struggle and what my family went through when we came from somalia. and he never told anyone one, “Let’s go fight in the war.” he didn’t even have enough money to buy a ticket to go back because he couldn’t keep a job. so whoever told him thoughs things probably gave him the money to go back. because my family didn’t even know that he was gping back home.

Come on mainstream reporters:  Dig!   Go around CAIR!  Go around the Imams!  This is a huge story, go to the families.

To reporters:    In case you missed it , most of the mainstream media did, it is an American (a white man) in Somalia, a leader of Al-Shabaab, who recently mocked Obama’s speech to the Muslim world, here, and promised more violence in the name of Allah.   He would definitely know how to appeal to Americans to join the international Jihad.