Mark Krikorian cites Ann on National Review blog

Ann already linked to this post by Mark Krikorian on National Review’s Corner, but I wanted to add a short comment.  Krikorian is the head of CIS, the Center for Immigration Studies, which we frequently cite. (I know, I have some nerve saying “we” when Ann’s doing all the posting lately.)

In this post he cites Ann’s observation that the Bhutanese are the third largest refugee group this year, and adds this:

The perversity of this policy is clear when you learn that they’re ethnic Nepalese kicked out by the Bhutanese government and living in refugee camps in — Nepal! I’m sure Nepal’s glad to palm them off on us, but coping with their compatriots is their business, not ours. The State Department is using resettlement to serve a transnational human-rights agenda that has nothing to do with promoting our vital national interests. In effect, our foreign-policy elite views the actual United States as a sort of hinterland where they can dump their overseas problems.

Krikorian goes on to cite more examples of this — the Meshketian Turks, the Somali Bantus, the Iraqi Palestinians. And he makes this excellent point:

The central problem is that we are not making decisions about what refugees will be resettled here based on a person’s individual characteristics and circumstances. Instead, we are making sweeping grants of eligilibility based on group membership, regardless of a person’s specific situation or alternatives.

If the State Department adopted Ann’s suggestion of  making refugee resettlement something engaged in by churches and other local organizations instead of mega-volags, that’s just what would happen — every case would be judged individually, because every family would have to be sponsored by someone. Fat chance, of course. Krikorian concudes:

Refugee resettlement should be reserved only for the most desperate persecuted people in the world, who face imminent death if they stay where they are and will never have anywhere else to go. If they think about it at all, this is what ordinary Americans think the refugee program is doing already, but it isn’t.

Mostly true, but a lot of ordinary Americans have now come in contact with problem refugees, and some are getting an inkling that this program is not what it’s supposed to be.

Somalia’s President to visit US cities with large Somali populations

I can’t see what this will accomplish except maybe bring in some bucks for the beleaguered Islamic government in Somalia, or maybe he is hoping to persuade former refugees to not join up with the Al Shabaab jihadists trying to kill him and take over the country.  But, I did have a little laugh thinking that, well, if it looked like his government might fall he could always just stay on here and ask for asylum.  From AP:

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The newly elected president of Somalia plans a tour of U.S. communities with large Somali populations this fall in hopes of spreading the word about his country’s problems and getting advice for solving some of them.

Elmi Duale, Somalia’s United Nations ambassador and permanent representative, told The Associated Press on Wednesday that Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed wants to visit communities in Minneapolis, Columbus and suburban Washington, D.C.

The visit will occur sometime at the end of this month.

Thousands of Somalis have come to the United States in the two decades since civil war began tearing their country apart in the early 1990s. The country has not had a functioning central government since about 1991.

Ahmed sees the visit as a “two-way channel,” Duale said, a chance to tell Somalis in the United States about the situation at home and a way of reminding them they can help.

“It’s a way of showing the Somalis in diaspora the homeland considers them still part and parcel of the community, and they have responsibilities to help and assist,” he said.

Ahmed’s visit also comes as a federal investigation continues into the return to Somalia of several young Somalis from the Minneapolis area, apparently to join a terrorist jihad back home.

I wonder who pays for his security while in the US.  Afterall there could still be some of the recruited Al Shabaab “youths” who hadn’t left the country yet.   Are local police departments responsible?  Does anyone know?

Demographics of Houston schools changing

They change as the US State Department’s refugee resettlement program focuses on the refugees the United Nations designates for us from year to year.

From the Houston Chronicle:

More than 700 refugee students resettled in the Houston area for the start of the new school year, a sharp increase from the roughly 500 last year. “At the very least, we’re doing about 30 percent more,” sad Joseph Henderson, refugee program coordinator for the Houston Independent School District.

And the countries these students fled are different, part of the nature of refugee resettlement. Houston schools, for instance, didn’t start enrolling large numbers of Iraqi students until the 2007-08 academic year.

Now, more than two-thirds of Harris County’s 1,978 refugees come from Iraq, Myanmar and Bhutan. Just seven years ago, the top countries of origin were Bosnia, Cuba, Vietnam and Sudan.

See a post earlier this month about the tough time refugees are having in Houston, here.

More arrests coming in the Minneapolis Somali “youths” case

This is the latest from Minneapolis on the Somali missing youths (former refugees) case we have been following since last November.   Fear is mounting that more arrests are right around the corner.  Three Somalis who actually travelled to Somalia to join terrorist group Al Shabaab returned to the US and have been arrested, and according to published reports, are talking.   Of course the big question everyone is waiting to see answered is, who recruited them and who paid their way?

From the Minneapolis Star Tribune yesterday:

Tension is growing within the Minneapolis Somali community as it awaits the next indictments in the federal probe of the disappearances of young men who became fighters in their homeland’s ongoing warfare.

So far, three Somali men have pleaded guilty to terrorism-related charges. Now several others — who either know the men or were considering returning to their homeland to fight for a terrorist group — are waiting to learn whether they, too, have been targeted by federal investigators.

Stephen L. Smith, a Minneapolis attorney who has counseled up to 20 local Somalis questioned by federal agents over the past 10 months, said recently that a number of people have contacted him and expressed “a heightened sense of concern” that they may be in legal jeopardy.

Guess they didn’t know this (or didn’t care):

Under federal law, it’s illegal for a U.S. citizen to fight in a foreign conflict. It is also illegal for Americans to support, in any way, a terrorist group.

Five of the “missing” have turned up dead in Somalia and family members believe some may have been killed on purpose by Al Shabaab when their usefulness ended.

20,000 Bhutanese resettled so far

Just a little over 40,000 to go (we committed to 60,000 over 5 years). 

Most have come to the United States* according to this blog that appears to be affiliated with the UN:

Over 20,000 refugees from Bhutan have left Nepal to embark on fresh lives in third countries as part of one of the largest resettlement schemes of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

The 20,000th refugee was eight-year-old Sita Budhathoki, who left Nepal yesterday with her parents and siblings for Des Moines, Iowa, in the United States, agency spokesperson Andrej Mahecic told reporters in Geneva today.

 The US has taken in the lion’s share of Bhutanese refugees, with over 17,000 resettled in the North American nation to date. They have also moved to countries such as Australia, Canada, Norway, New Zealand and Denmark.

The programme to resettle refugees – who had fled ethnic tensions in Bhutan in the early 1990s – in seven camps in eastern Nepal kicked off in November 2007.

* The Bhutanese are the third largest group to be resettled in the US this fiscal year.  Iraq is number one and Burma is number two, here.

Update:  We get a mention over at National Review Online, here.