Those Gazans just won’t go away!

Update July 18: Phyllis Chesler changed her post, after I posted the comments following this paragraph in her comments and we had a short email discussion. I recommend to our readers her Pajamas Media blog, where I read the post in question; she deals with many of the same issues we write about here, with an emphasis on women’s issues, especially Muslim women.

Original post —

In the piece I cited in my last post, Phyllis Chesler unwittingly repeats a false story that we’ve repeatedly tried to correct, but we don’t have a wide enough readership to kill it outright.

It’s based on a Presidential Determination from January, in which President Obama allocated “$20.3 million from the United States Emergency Refugee and Migration Assistance Fund for the purpose of meeting unexpected and urgent refugee and migration needs” for Palestinians in Gaza.

The apparently obvious — but wrong — conclusion is that our government is bringing Palestinians from Gaza into the U.S.  That is NOT what the order is about. It was given after Israel went to war in Gaza to stop the constant rocket attacks. Its purpose was to provide funds for Gazan Palestinians within their own country who were displaced from their homes or otherwise in special need from the war. The language is boilerplate, but “migration” is not the same as “immigration” in any case. 

We would be the last people in the world to cover up for Obama, or to minimize the damage he is doing to our country. In this case, he is not doing what he is accused of. And why would he? From his point of view the residents of Gaza are more useful where they are, where they can rain down more rockets on Israel and create more anti-Israel lies for CNN. I wish people would spend their energy fighting the many real threats we face, not making up phantom ones. Here are the posts we’ve done on the issue with more details:

January 30, by Ann: Obama sends more emergency funds to Gaza

February 11, by Judy: Hamas members are NOT flooding into the U.S. from Gaza

February 21, by Judy: Hamas members flooding into U.S.? Maybe even terrorist prisoners! (Or not.)

February 23, by Ann: Palestinians as refugees to the U.S.?

March 11, by Judy: Senator Kyl bases amendment on misinterpretation about Palestinian refugees

And by the way, that $20 million mentioned in the Presidential Directive was only a quick little injection of money into Gaza. Obama followed it up with almost a billion additional dollars shortly afterwards. It all went into Gaza, to Hamas, or maybe into Swiss bank accounts; who knows? But it did not bring any Gazans here.

Obama may be opening the door to millions of asylum applicants

Update July 21st:  For readers wanting more details on this decision by the Obama Administration, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) has a discussion with links here (scroll down to the third item).  Hat tip:  Paul

The New York Times reported on Wednesday:

The Obama administration has opened the way for foreign women who are victims of severe domestic beatings and sexual abuse to receive asylum in the United States. The action reverses a Bush administration stance in a protracted and passionate legal battle over the possibilities for battered women to become refugees.

In addition to meeting other strict conditions for asylum, abused women will need to show that they are treated by their abuser as subordinates and little better than property, according to an immigration court filing by the administration, and that domestic abuse is widely tolerated in their country. They must show that they could not find protection from institutions at home or by moving to another place within their own country.

The case that is in question is that of a Mexican woman seeking asylum, fearful of being murdered by her common-law husband. He forced her to live with him, stole her salary, repeatedly raped her at gunpoint and tried to kill her. Last year Bush administration officials argued in court that her case did not meet the legal standard for asylum. Now the Obama administration is reversing that stance.

The question of asylum for battered women has been around since 1996, when

a Guatemalan woman named Rody Alvarado was granted asylum by an immigration court, based on her account of repeated beatings by her husband. Three years later, an immigration appeals court overturned Ms. Alvarado’s asylum, saying she was not part of any persecuted group under American law.  

Apparently that case is not yet resolved.

Since then Ms. Alvarado’s case has stalled as successive administrations debated the issue, with immigration officials reluctant to open a floodgate of asylum petitions from battered women across the globe. During the Clinton administration, Attorney General Janet Reno proposed regulations to clarify the matter, but they have never gone into effect. In a briefing paper in 2004, lawyers for the Department of Homeland Security raised the possibility of asylum for victims of domestic violence, but the Bush administration never put that into practice in immigration court, Professor Musalo said.

Now Homeland Security officials say they are returning to views the department put forward in 2004, refining them to draw conditions sufficiently narrow that battered women would prevail in only a limited number cases.

It’s a thorny problem. Whose heart doesn’t go out to a woman with a story like the Mexican asylum seeker? But domestic violence (what a sterile term!) and sexual abuse are so common around the world that, as Phyllis Chesler points out,

Fellow Americans: Prepare to receive the entire female population of Pakistan sometime soon. And that’s just for starters. I don’t oppose this—but I honestly don’t know if we can economically afford to do it. Given the recession/depression, I rather doubt we can. But get ready for something like this to happen anyway.

…. Studies show that 50-90% of Pakistani women are routinely beaten, even when they are pregnant, and that daughter-beating and wife-beating are not considered crimes. Pakistani men will sometimes publicly gang-rape a young girl in order to falsely “avenge” another crime committed by a member of their own clan; be-head, throw acid at, or burn alive a girl or woman who has offended their family or political-religious honor; they will marry a ten-year-old daughter to a fifty-year-old man in order to settle a debt, or to receive a small sum of money. In Pakistan, most honor killings of girls and women are not prosecuted either. In one study, my own, first published in Middle East Quarterly, almost half the honor murders perpetrated in the West were perpetrated by Pakistani men or Pakistani families.

 Even if Homeland Security drew narrow guidelines, there would still be plenty of eligible women just in Pakistan, and many more in other Muslim countries, plus those in other countries. Chesler seems to be suggesting that it would be a good idea to open our doors to battered women, but not their batterers, if we weren’t in a recession. She makes this excellent point:

Male domestic violence is a global phenomenon. Why single out one country—isn’t that “racist” or “Islamophobic” and doesn’t that suggest that all Pakistani Muslims are batterers or tend to batter women more than, let’s say, Christian-American men do?

But they do. They are trained to do so. Their culture has normalized woman-battering while the Big Bad West has actually gone and criminalized it, tried to shelter its victims and prosecute their persecutors. True, we have done so rather late in the day and in an imperfect way. But this level of progress does not exist in the Arab Middle East, Africa, or central Asia where even honor murders are accepted, rarely reported as such, even more rarely prosecuted, and where reduced sentences apply to this but to no other crime.

I’m sorry, Phyllis, and I’m terribly sorry for all those women, but it would be impossible to provide asylum to the millions of deserving women around the world. Of course, just because it’s impossible doesn’t mean Obama mightn’t try to do it. Not because he’s such a great humanitarian, but because it would overload the system and cause that much more chaos.

This issue bears watching.

Immigration, the fall of Capitalism/the rise of Islam, and where can we get a Geert Wilders?

Just today readers sent me three bits of information I’m pulling together under that title and will file in our “stealth jihad” category.

The first is from Blulitespecial and it’s about a conference that will be held in Chicago this weekend entitled ‘The Fall of  Capitalism and the Rise of Islam.”  From Fox News:

A group committed to establishing an international Islamic empire and reportedly linked to Al Qaeda is stepping up its Western recruitment efforts by holding its first official conference in the U.S.

Hizb ut-Tahrir is a global Sunni network with reported ties to confessed 9/11 mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and Al Qaeda in Iraq’s onetime leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. It has operated discreetly in the U.S. for decades.

Now, it is coming out of the shadows and openly hosting a July 19 conference entitled, “The Fall of Capitalism and the Rise of Islam,” at a posh Hilton hotel in a suburb of Chicago.

Read the whole article here.  They may be figuring with Obama in the White House, the fall of Capitalism is near!  The group, Hizb ut-Tahri, needs loads of young people to indoctrinate with the idea that a worldwide Islamic caliphate is the goal.

Then another reader sent me this column of a couple of weeks ago by our friend Diana West about the rise of Geert Wilders in Holland and how the Muslims might just pack up and leave the Netherlands if Wilders’ political views prevail.  Interesting thought, and as my tipster queried — where could we find our own Geert Wilders?

And, the third item in my inbox when I came in just now is a note from Janet with information about a book on how immigration is the Trojan Horse for the spread of Islam around the world.  I don’t know where the following excerpts come from, but these two points were in her e-mail:

“The authors of this book argue that ‘Islamic Immigration’ (Al-Hijra, in Arabic) is tied organically and inseparably to a form of immigration which is an integral part of the Islamic call (da’wa) to establish an Islamic state or political power base and to spread Islam.”

Pages 6-7.

In his endorsement of the book Geert Wilders writes:

“In Al-Hijra, Sam Solomon & E Al Maqdisi give an excellent insider view of how immigration is a bona fide doctrine of Islam, not just a random immigration of people looking for jobs, opportunities, and a better life – and thus is being used, as set in motion by Muhammed, as a vital strategy of conquest. They explain how and why immigration is going under the radar, and how the demands of the growing Muslim communities are transforming our societies.”

Pages 11-12.

The book (at Amazon):  Modern Day Trojan Horse: Al-Hijra, The Islamic Doctrine of Immigration, Accepting Freedom or Imposing Islam?

Addendum: Steve Emerson of the Investigative Project has a report on the Fall of Capitalism conference here. –Judy

International Organization for Migration receives $10 million from US State Department to help Iraqis return home

Just now someone sent me a press release dated today from the IOM (sorry I can’t find the link for it) but it begins:

IRAQ – US$ 10 Million to Help Returning Families Reintegrate – IOM has received US$10 million from the US Department of State Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration (PRM) to meet the most urgent needs of Iraqi returnees.

Working a with the Ministry of Displacement and Migration (MoDM) and host communities, IOM is assisting returnees and local residents without jobs or underemployed by providing information and counseling; grants for the purchase of tools, equipment or base materials; and vocational and/or business training, to create or expand small businesses or to find employment.


IOM monitors have identified some 52,000 post-2006 returnee families in approximately 800 locations; with the majority returning to Baghdad, and significant groups to Diyala and Anbar.

Seventy-one per cent of returnees interviewed by IOM said they had decided to return to their places of origin because of improved security or a combination of improved security and difficult conditions in the place of displacement.

Sounds like it could save the US taxpayers more money and be less of a headache then hauling tens of thousands of Iraqis to the US only to have them complain about no jobs and poor living conditions.

For information on IOM in Iraq go here.

The WSJ adds more information to Iraqi Palestinian resettlement plans

The Wall Street Journal today has followed up on the story first reported by the Christian Science Monitor, here, last week about the US resettlement plans for approximately 1350 Iraqi Palestinians.  We first got a hint of this plan here.

A few pieces of clarification that have added to the previous CSM story follow. 

 The WSJ confirms the resettlement is controversial.

The U.S. agreed to resettle 1,350 Palestinians displaced by fighting in Iraq, marking the largest resettlement ever of Palestinian refugees in the nation. 

The decision appears to signal a shift in Washington’s previous position against resettling Palestinians out of concern about the potential impact on U.S. relations with Israel and the Arab world. The resettlement, which is slated to begin this fall, is likely to illicit strong reactions from people on both sides of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Here is a section I found troubling.  The reporter, Miriam Jordan, says that Arab countries see this initiative (resettling this group of Palestinians) as a sign of new openness toward the Muslim world in the wake of Obama’s Cairo speech, but she quotes no one actually saying that.   In fact, we know that at least one spokesman for the so-called Muslim world, the American Al-Shabaab, is saying that they (Muslims) will not be suckered by Obama’s charismatic words, here.

Many Arab countries interpreted President Barack Obama’s speech in Cairo last month as an attempt to put U.S. relations with Islamic nations on a new course and dissipate the strain that characterized ties during the Bush administration. They see the offer of accepting Palestinian refugees as an early sign of a new openness.  [who is “they?”]

The following information confirms what I believe may well be the case, that Arab countries are not happy with this turn of events.  As we have reported many times at RRW, the refugees are needed to keep the sword over Israel’s head, the more poor and angry Palestinians in the world the better.

However, Mr. Asali [American Task Force on Palestine] cautioned that it is bound to irk Palestinian and Arab leaders who interpret U.S. willingness to resettle Palestinians — which comes with full rights such as citizenship down the road — as “a conspiracy to liquidate the Palestinian refugee issue.” With the exception of Jordan, no country in the Middle East has granted citizenship to Palestinian refugees. Many Arab countries believe that fully integrating large numbers of Palestinian refugees would undercut their demand for an independent state.

One American Jewish organization doesn’t like this plan either, but for completely differant reasons.

At least one pro-Israel group in the U.S. deems it a mistake to absorb the Palestinian Iraqis, who were welcomed by Saddam Hussein and regarded as loyal supporters of his regime. “We don’t think that Washington should be bringing in a group of people who we know were publicly and consistently hostile to the United States and its closest ally, Israel,” said Morton Klein, president of the Zionist Organization of America.

The WSJ article then gives us more background then we ever knew previously about how these Palestinians came to be in Iraq and why they were so hated.  And, once again confirms my contention that Muslim charity toward fellow Muslims is a myth.  These Iraqi Palestinians knew it was a myth too, here.

Palestinians moved to Iraq after Arab-Israeli conflicts in 1948 and 1967, and following the Gulf War in 1991. The community grew to nearly 35,000. “Saddam Hussein made a point of using Palestinian refugees to show solidarity with the Palestinian cause,” said Bill Frelick, refugee-policy director at Human Rights Watch in Washington.

The preferential treatment bred resentment among many Iraqis. After Baghdad fell to U.S.-led forces in 2003, Palestinians became a target for harassment and violence, including bombings and murder. A particular point of contention had been the government’s provision of subsidized housing for Palestinians, often at the expense of mostly Shiite landlords who received little rent from the government in return.

After Mr. Hussein was deposed, many landlords evicted their Palestinian tenants, who are mainly Sunni Muslims. Driven out of Baghdad and other cities, the Palestinians tried to flee to neighboring Syria and Jordan, which already host hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees. When those countries blocked their entry, the displaced Palestinians sought refuge in camps that lack basic infrastructure and jeopardize their health and safety, said Mr. Frelick.

Read the whole article at the WSJ, and for more background use our search function for “Iraqi Palestinians.”  We have written a whole slew of posts on the subject.

And, by the way, these Palestinians will come to the US as Iraqis, in the Iraqi refugee category.