Maine: Writer Says Lewiston’s Somali Makeover is Good for the City; But Was She Completely Honest?

Mainer Cynthia Anderson recently published a book about how 6,000 plus Somali refugees are busy resuscitating a supposedly dying Maine city.

No surprise that the Star Tribune, in the heart of Little Mogadishu, MN, reviewed Anderson’s book.  One quote in the review stands out and it makes my blood boil!

“I also think journalists, including me, sometimes don’t push for answers lest they appear insensitive or out of fear they’ll provide ammunition to haters.”

Just think about that, she is admitting she might have pulled some punches so as not to give us (haters! and Islamophobes!), critics of the UN/US Refugee Admissions Program, any ammunition. WHAT THE H***!

If so-called journalists were HONEST, for one thing there would be no need for me to write this blog and secondly if they were HONEST then maybe government programs like this one might be reevaluated, reformed or trashed.

From the Star Tribune:

Review: ‘Home Now: How 6,000 Refugees Transformed an American Town,’ by Cynthia Anderson

“Home Now” by Cynthia Anderson; Public Affairs (318 pages, $28)

“A moving chronicle of who belongs in America.” Guess you can see the bias right there at Amazon.

At a campaign rally in Portland, Maine, President Donald Trump linked worsening crime in Maine to the influx of Somali refugees there. He blamed their large community in Minnesota for straining the state’s social safety net and bringing potential recruits for Islamic terrorist groups.

“You see it happening,” Trump said. “You read about it.”

The above is a reminder to all those wimpy Republican governors who are ‘welcoming’ more Somalis, Iraqis, and Syrians to your states that the President wants to rein-in the program. Duh!

Long before Trump turned refugee resettlement into a national flash point, Cynthia Anderson was immersing herself in Lewiston, Maine, a small white town that came to host one of the largest populations of Somali-Americans in the country, for her timely, richly detailed book “Home Now.”

Anderson grew up in a village 45 miles away and recalled the area’s gradual decline leading up to 2001, when the first Somali refugees arrived in nearby Portland.

She reported on Lewiston’s transformation for more than a decade, moving from seeing Somali newcomers as passive victims traumatized by war to people with complex, resilient trajectories.

[….]

Fatuma Hussein at 2017 Women’s march. “We are the future of Maine. We are the face of Maine.” See one of my posts on the Somali community organizer here in 2014: https://refugeeresettlementwatch.org/2014/01/11/maine-somalisothers-protest-welfare-rule-change-proposal/

Anderson also writes about Fatuma Hussein, a community leader and advocate for Somali women who admires Maine’s civility and is optimistic about relations between natives and newcomers. She speaks out in opposition to Trump’s election, yet she is also forthright about the challenges of merging different cultures in Lewiston.

The town is not prepared to absorb the arrivals so quickly; the mayor draws headlines for saying Lewiston is “maxed out.”

Anderson deftly sums up the tension by noting that the new refugees were not ungrateful but nor were they just grateful.

[….]

Though the book paints a mostly rosy picture of how refugees can revitalize a community, Anderson is honest [?—how honest?—ed] about her qualms.

There is a brief mention of the murder of Donald Giusti killed by a gang of African migrant teens in Lewiston’s city park. https://fraudscrookscriminals.com/2019/04/15/arrests-made-in-lewiston-me-death-of-white-man-at-the-hands-of-a-gang-of-african-refugees/

During debates over a state bill aimed at the Somali-American community to ban female genital mutilation (FGM), she admits to being conflicted. Anderson is initially opposed, and doesn’t want to see the Somali community hurt, but nor does she want harm to come to any Somali girls.

[What woman could possibly be conflicted about the brutal practice of slicing off a portion of a girl’s genitals?—ed]

Anderson also acknowledges that the refugee vetting process warrants examination, noting that records can be inadequate in war-torn countries.

She considers it fair to question how long refugees take to become self-sufficient, finding answers inconsistent and hard to find. [No kidding—this program is run in secrecy! The refugee contractors and the government don’t want anyone to find out how poorly the refugees are doing!—ed]

“I also think journalists, including me, sometimes don’t push for answers lest they appear insensitive or out of fear they’ll provide ammunition to haters,” she admits. “But not asking and not knowing provides fertile ground for rumors to flourish. It’s also patronizing; Lewiston’s newcomers can withstand the scrutiny.”  [Note that she deftly suggests that those of us with concerns are trafficking in rumors!—ed]

Anderson raises these questions through her portrait of Jared Bristol, driven after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks to become an activist against Islamic extremism. Bristol advocates for the FGM bill during a hearing that’s one of the only times Anderson sees Muslims and anti-Islamists in the same place.

Such activists, Anderson writes, “are wrong if they believe I absorbed nothing they and other anti-Islamists said or that my thinking didn’t shift, however incrementally.”  [So what good is absorbing if she then pulls punches?—ed]

Scrutiny comes anew when a man dies of a fatal head injury after being attacked by several teens of African descent.

Nevertheless, and moving right along, the expert concludes:

….that Mainers feel that integrating refugees is worth the effort, even as it has taken time and money.

That is not what I’m hearing!!!

See my extensive, and I mean extensive archive on Lewiston here at RRW (there is more at ‘Frauds and Crooks.’)!

Gee, I wonder if Ms. Anderson used any of the material I’ve compiled over the years?  Did she get the story about the Somali teen who burned down four apartment buildings in 2013 for example? Or the one about the ISIS fighter whose wife lived in Lewiston?  Or the Somali health care scammers?  And, as far back as 2009 Somali ‘youths’ were roaming the streets and attacking people.

Maybe a journalist should write a book!

Your tax dollars flowed to terrorists around the world via food stamp fraud

That is what a new report says.

Longtime readers know that a pet project of mine for several years was following the food stamp fraud busts going on around the country.  See my complete file on the subject here.

I’m relieved to see that some organization of stature has taken the issue of food stamp “trafficking” seriously.

From Breitbart (Hat tip: Richard @highblueridge):

Report: Millions in Food Stamp Dollars Flowed to Terrorists

Screenshot (763)
See the whole report:    http://g-a-i.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/2018_GAI_SNAP_FRAUD_TERROR.pdf

 

Millions of taxpayers dollars trafficked through food stamp fraud went to terrorists who funded their activities at home and abroad, according to an explosive report from the Government Accountability Institute (GAI).

The report from GAI, where Breitbart News Senior-Editor-at-Large Peter Schweizer serves as president, highlighted several instances where money obtained through Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits fraud went to fund acts of terrorism, including the 1993 World Trade Center bombings and the 2013 Boston Marathon Bombing.

“Hawalas” used to launder money

The U.S. Treasury Department and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) identified that many terrorists would get away with funding their illicit activities by using businesses known as “hawalas” to launder money.

A “hawala”— which is an Arabic term defined in English as transfer (or trust)— is a method of transferring money through informal agents from international networks, and many Muslim immigrants settled in western countries use the “hawala” method to transfer funds to family members.

GAI, citing a U.S. Treasury report, found that more than $7 billion flows into Pakistan alone through hawalas every year.

[….]

Investigators say it is very difficult to track the money moved around through hawalas, even though the federal government has known about the use of hawalas and their alleged role in financing terrorism for years.

But as federal investigators became more familiar with the welfare fraud mechanisms used to fund terrorist activities after the September 11 attacks, investigators have cracked down on a number of instances where terrorists have used the benefit fraud for such purposes.

Much more here.

By the way, even if your tax dollars don’t make it into the hands of terrorists, the billions of US dollars sent out of the country via remittances to ‘home’ countries have a huge impact on the US as it is money that is not available to our economy.

Episcopal Migration Ministries might be dropped from federal refugee program

But so might seven other refugee contractors?

Before you get too excited….

…..there must be an error in this report, but I am posting it just to see if we can get the truth shaken loose.

When I first started writing this blog in 2007 there were ten federal resettlement contractors that monopolized all refugee placement in the US, but the number dropped to nine and has remained there ever since. The nine are listed below.***

Earlier we learned that Episcopal Migration Ministries (EMM) was as much as 99.5% funded by you (taxpayers!) for their charitable good works for refugees. So it would be no surprise to learn that they would be one of the federal resettlement contractors dropped by the US State Department as the Trump administration slows the flow of paying clients to the US.

By the way, when the present Refugee Admissions Program was set up, it was supposed to be a public-private partnership, but over the years the private funds dwindled as they became more dependent on public money (aka taxpayer dollars).

The headline for the story which is mostly about Episcopal Church business is this:

Executive Council passes budget, grants diocesan waivers, praises work of Episcopal Migration Ministries

A few paragraphs into the Episcopal News Service story we learn this:

Robertson EMM
The Rev. Charles Robertson predicts EMM will be cut off from refugee contracts. “We are prepared for the worst.”

 

Members of Executive Council also received briefings from church officers and staff members during the week, including a bleak assessment of the future of the church’s refugee resettlement work from the Rev. Charles Robertson, the presiding bishop’s canon for ministry beyond the Episcopal Church.

Episcopal Migration Ministries, one of nine agencies with federal contracts to resettle refugees in the United States, expects to learn in the coming weeks if its contract will be renewed, at a time when the Trump administration has dramatically reduced the number of refugees being resettled. The odds are not in Episcopal Migration Ministries’ favor, Robertson told Executive Council’s Ministry Beyond the Episcopal Church Committee.

Could seven be given the boot?

“If we were going to bet on it, we’d bet we’re not going to make the cut,” Robertson said. He predicted only two of the nine would receive contracts. Though unlikely, he said it is still possible Episcopal Migration Ministries will be one of the two.

I’m thinking that the reporter got that wrong and meant to say that ‘seven of the nine would receive contracts.’  If it is true that seven would be cut, that would be earth-shaking news.

Episcopal News Service continued….

Later that afternoon, Robertson gave a sobering outlook on Episcopal Migration Ministries’ future to the committee on Ministry Beyond the Episcopal Church.

“We are prepared for the worst,” Robertson said – the worst being the end of Episcopal Migration Ministries’ contract to continue the resettlement work it has done for the federal government since the 1980s.

 

emm partner map
EMM’s interactive partners map. Go here to see if one of their offices is near you:           https://episcopalmigrationministries.org/our-partners/

 

The U.S. Department of State announced Sept. 17 that it would lower the ceiling to just 30,000 refugees for the fiscal year that began Oct. 1, down from a ceiling of 85,000 just two years ago. And that 30,000 is just the upper limit, Robertson stressed. The actual number of refugees to be welcomed into the United States likely will be much lower.

Episcopal Migration Ministries once oversaw 31 resettlement affiliates in 26 dioceses, but that number has dwindled to 14 affiliates in 12 dioceses. With even fewer refugees to resettle, the federal government isn’t expected to keep all nine of its contracted agencies, Robertson said, and Episcopal Migration Ministries, though well equipped to do that work, is one of the smaller of the nine.

Even in the worst-case scenario, however, Episcopal Migration Ministries will remain an important part of the Episcopal Church’s outreach efforts. If the resettlement work ends, the agency may find other ways to support refugees and, possibly, other immigrants, Robertson said. He estimated it would take about a year to fully realize that new vision for the agency.

More here.

I wonder what the loss of millions of federal dollars will do to the church.  I once had a reader, knowledgeable about the budget of the Episcopal Church, tell me that some of the refugee dollars went to other programs, however we were never able to confirm that.

By the way, there likely won’t be any tears shed by the remaining contractors since the nine have been competitors as they ‘bid for bodies!’

 

 

***Below are the nine federal refugee resettlement contractors.

I realize I haven’t posted this list for twelve whole days!

The present US Refugee Admissions Program will never be reformed if the system of paying the contractors by the head stays in place and the contractors are permitted to act as Leftwing political agitation groups, community organizers and lobbyists paid on our dime!  

And, to add insult to injury they pretend it is all about ‘humanitarianism.’

The number in parenthesis is the percentage of their income paid by you (the taxpayer) to place the refugees into your towns and cities and get them signed up for their services (aka welfare)!  And, get them registered to vote eventually!

From my most recent accounting, here.  However, please see that Nayla Rush at the Center for Immigration Studies has done an update of their income, as has James Simpson at the Capital Research Center!

Germany: Leftwing Jews fuming because Jews who fear Islam have joined the political Rightwing

And, those Jews who fear the Muslim migration to Germany have done the unforgivable and formed a lobbying group with Germany’s AfD party (think of it as the Germany first! party).

Invasion of Europe news…..

 

merkel poster with migrants
When Chancellor Merkel chose these new Germans her political fate was sealed, but did she seal Germany’s fate too?

 

From Religion News Service:

Jewish lobby in far-right German party denounced for anti-Muslim views

PARIS (RNS) — A small group of German Jews has launched a lobby group within the far-right Alternative for Germany party, prompting a swift rejection from the country’s established Jewish organizations and accusations that the move was an anti-Muslim ploy.

The founding of the 24-member “Jews in the AfD” group on Oct. 7 seems like a contradiction given the party’s staunch nationalist views that include playing down Germany’s Nazi past, including the Holocaust, and the close ties some members have to anti-Semitic movements. [Notice how the reporter here is throwing in bias to set the readers mind right in the opening paragraphs!—ed]

But it highlights one of the party’s main policies — opposition to accepting mostly Muslim immigrants in Germany — through its accusation that the newcomers are deeply anti-Jewish. A wave of about a million new immigrants in 2015, many of them from Islamic countries, has been decisive in boosting support for the AfD.

The AfD, founded in 2013 as an anti-European Union protest party, won 12.6 percent of the national election a year ago. It is now the largest opposition party in the Bundestag (parliament). The party has used this platform to challenge many of the country’s postwar taboos.

[….]

The JSUD was one of 17 Jewish organizations, including the influential Central Committee of Jews in Germany and the country’s General Rabbinical Conference, that issued a joint statement denouncing the new AfD lobby.

Other Jewish groups, including the World Jewish Congress, have added their support to the statement, bringing the total of signatories to 42.

“The AfD openly agitates against Muslims and other minorities in Germany … trying to present Muslims as enemies of the West and of the Jews,” said the statement, titled “No Alternative for Jews.”

“Muslims are not the enemies of the Jews!” the statement says. The enemies of all democrats in this country are extremists, regardless of whether they have extreme right, radical left or radical Muslim views.”

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s decision to open Germany’s borders to the waves of migrants marching across Europe in 2015 changed the country’s political landscape and sapped support for her Christian Democratic party and its Social Democratic coalition partners.

The AfD and the Bavarian-based Christian Social Union, a Merkel ally that has moved strongly to the right to counter the AfD’s challenge to its voter base, have used fear of Islam, a few sex crimes committed by migrants and concern about the cost of caring for the newcomers to stoke mistrust of Muslims.

It is a very long article, read it all here.

My ‘Invasion of Europe’ archive is here.

Trump has not yet signed refugee determination, therefore zero refugees being admitted to the US right now

“Whatever that number is, it will absolutely be driven principally by the capacity of my agency and the law enforcement, security, and vetting practices.”

 

(Francis Cissna, director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS))

 

Granted we are only 4 days into the month of October so things could change tomorrow or the next day, but so far zero refugees have been placed since the new fiscal year began on Monday (October 1).

Here we hear from Voice of America and a distressed resettlement lobbyist about the disappointment in the refugee industry.

Trump Administration Misses Refugee Admissions Deadline

The Trump administration has missed the end-of-fiscal-year deadline to set the maximum number of refugees that will be allowed in the United States in the next 12 months.

Mary Giovagnoli1
An “extraordinarily disappointed” Mary Giovagnoli of the Refugee Council USA, the lobbying arm for the refugee contractors.

“Consultations and the subsequent Presidential Determination (PD) normally take place by Oct. 1. However, on some occasions, the consultations and subsequent PD have been completed later,” a U.S. State Department spokesperson said in an emailed statement to VOA. “We do not expect this will have any operational impact on the Refugee Admissions Program.”

The agency declined a request from VOA to provide a timeline for the consultations.

[….]

Last month, the administration proposed a record-low refugee ceiling for the 2019 fiscal year of 30,000 refugees. By law, Congress must be consulted about the cap before a final number can be issued.

“We are extraordinarily disappointed that the administration has failed to honor the spirit and the letter of the law when it comes to consultations,” said Mary Giovagnoli. executive director of Refugee Council USA. “For two years in a row now, the administration has just failed to take it seriously.”

President Donald Trump has dramatically cut refugee arrivals to the United States since taking office.

[….]

Cissna
Cissna: operational realities will dictate the final number.

Francis Cissna, director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), said at a conference Monday that new vetting measures have increased processing times for refugee admissions.

He added that the suggested ceiling of 30,000 for FY2019 takes into account the “operational realities” of those measures for “national security and public safety.”

“The number is not final yet. The president has not signed the proclamation. Whatever that number is, it will absolutely be driven principally by the capacity of my agency and the law enforcement, security, and vetting practices,” Cissna said.

More here.

Click here for my complete file on RCUSA (Refugee Council USA).