Why do we continue to resettle refugees in dangerous Chicago slums?

Update:   For the whole article from the Chicago Tribune that must have been published in segments, go here, to the Baltimore Sun.

This post was originally going to be about another bunch of Iraqi refugees being resettled in slums—in Chicago this time—but when I did a little research a name kept coming up and it rang a bell.  Where did I hear it before?

Here is the story from the Chicago Tribune:

Along the dingy hallways of a Rogers Park apartment building, the smells of fish soup, curry and other ethnic cuisine merge with the tinny scent of roach spray binding four floors of immigrants from around the world.

It was move-in day for Sattar Naama, a one-time mechanic who escaped Iraq to Lebanon in 2008 ahead of militants who killed a younger brother, who was an Iraqi soldier, and a sister who was with him. Naama and his wife arrived in Chicago in July.


What greeted them were roaches marching across their new apartment and a kitchen sink stained black. Such conditions illustrate one of the findings in the recent Georgetown University report on Iraqi refugees: Because of “insufficient” cash assistance, many of them land squarely into impoverished settings .


The math for refugees is unforgiving. In Chicago, the average cost for rent, a security deposit, food and rudimentary furniture is $1,550, according to state estimates. The State Department provides a one-time $425 grant per adult refugee.  [Edit:  They are always misleading reporters about the funding, it’s $425 per refugee and there is so much more each refugee family receives.]

Responsibility for the rest lies with local aid organizations.  [Edit: it always was supposed to be that way, it’s a public-private partnership afterall!]  In the last year, they scrambled to secure government benefits normally intended for the poor and worked hard to raise a relatively small $1 million by repeatedly approaching private donors contending with their own looming shortfalls.


“The financing for all this is abysmal,” said Edwin Silverman, the refugee resettlement coordinator in Illinois.

Oh yes!  That is the name—Edwin Silverman!  Here is another story from the Chicago Tribune also yesterday about another Iraqi family’s trials in Rogers Park overseen by Mr. Silverman’s state office.

Then get this, just two days earlier than those articles, the Tribune ran this article about what a terrible time teens, especially from Africa, are having in the Rogers Park section of Chicago where they have been resettled.    Look who is quoted about the violence, it’s Mr. Silverman again!

They left violence-riddled countries like the Republic of Congo, Liberia and Sudan, only to move to neighborhoods in Chicago that were also beset with violence.

Teliane and Yoann Bakala were caught in the crossfire of bullets in Rogers Park; Prince Kannah was attacked inside the cafeteria of his Edgewater school; Ashal Yai always checks to see if gang violence is brewing on her street in Uptown before setting off on foot.


The refugees have contributed to a new documentary film, “A Fairyland of Violence,” that is being shown Saturday in Chicago. In the short film, the youths recall their personal experiences navigating a new, often-scary world where gangs and guns collide with their dreams for a better future.

Read the whole article for the litany of violent acts these teens have experienced.  Then here is what the “expert” had to say:

Experts say the struggle to fit in, which is always an issue for teenagers, gets blown out of proportion for many refuge kids. Indeed, the most vulnerable refugees are teenagers and the elderly, said Ed Silverman, director of Illinois Office of Refugee and Immigrant Services.

For African immigrants, Silverman said, there is the added difficulty of navigating race relations: “Getting caught in the middle between white prejudice and not being accepted by black Americans,” he said.

The clash is a reality for an increasing number of teens. The population of African refugees in the Chicago area has doubled in the last 10 years, he said. The region is now home to more than 50,000 African immigrants from 48 nations.

We are quite aware of the black on black violence in Chicago, afterall we just witnessed black young men beating another black student to death about two weeks ago.   So, why do we keep resettling refugees in crime-ridden slums.   One might think that Mr. Silverman with US State Department blessings is conducting some sick social experiment.  Frankly, as ludicrous as it sounds, what other logical explanation could there be? 

The only other reason I can think of is that progressives like Mr. Silverman (and Hillary at the State Department too) are purposely creating chaos and strife ala the Chicago/Alinsky strategy.

I remember now where I heard the name before—Ed Silverman.   It was here in a post about how Chris Coen formed the group Friends of Refugees.  He had gone to Chicago in 2001 to complain to the State Department and Mr. Silverman about how refugees were being brutalized in Chicago.   They obviously didn’t listen.

Please take a few minutes and read Mr. Coen’s report on how the State Department and Mr. Silverman treated Mr. Coen’s report on crime against refugees in Chicago.  And, consider that we have just seen Mr. Silverman speak as the expert about violence involving refugees in Chicago—what a joke!

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