Right On: Are we safer? Extreme vetting vs. public safety

Army Capt. Matthew Ball, center, shows a sign made for his former interpreter Qismat Amin, left, by a group of elementary school students, as Amin arrived from Afghanistan at San Francisco International Airport Wednesday. Ball welcomed Amin to the United States after buying him a plane ticket to ensure his quick arrival amid concerns the Trump administration might try to expand its travel ban to Afghanistan. Ball's wife Giselle Rahn is pictured at right. San Francisco, California, Feb. 8, 2017 | AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, St. George News

OPINION — Media hysteria with its half-truths and outright lies about Trump’s immigration order has died down. George Soros’ rent-a-protest crowds are fading away. Democratic politicians have taken their knee-jerk opposition to anything Trump to some new outrage.

Karen Shore holds up a sign outside of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Tuesday. A panel of appeals court judges reviewing President Donald Trump’s travel ban hammered away Tuesday at the federal government’s arguments that the states cannot challenge the order. San Francisco, California, Feb. 7, 2017 | AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, St. George News

The rollout of Trump’s order that produced all this angst was a disaster and a gift to the left. A novice administration prized secrecy and surprise over competence. It should have coordinated implementation with the relevant agencies and congressional leaders before springing it late on a Friday afternoon.

The flawed rollout produced photo ops of refugees stuck in airports and mass confusion about others holding green cards and tourist visas. These in turn prompted a flurry of lawsuits from wannabe stars of the progressive left. Now the courts will decide whether the order is constitutional and legal.

Regardless of the legal outcome, a major question remains: Would we be safer? If found legal, would Trump’s immigration order reduce the chances of terrorist atrocities in our country?

In my opinion, no, it wouldn’t. Even if Trump’s immigration order is struck down, we are already at greater risk. Let me explain.

First, only 11 of the 180 persons arrested or killed for terror activities in this country since 2001 came from the seven designated countries. The nation most likely to produce terrorists may surprise you: the United States.

Eighty-one of the 180 were U.S. citizens. Not refugees, not legal or illegal aliens but citizens. A number of these were self-radicalized Muslims with no prior criminal history. We have no chance of finding all such people in advance of terrorist acts.

Second, Trump’s order makes hitting the U.S. a bigger prize for any terrorist worth his AK-47 and improvised explosive device. What better than to put egg on Trump’s face by striking now? With dozens of potential citizen-jihadists and hundreds of would-be foreign terrorists from nonrestricted countries, expect shocking headlines this year.

Third, by pouring fuel on a fire, Trump’s order has already enhanced ISIS and al-Qaida recruiting. What better than defending the faith now that the great Satan has exposed himself? Never mind that almost all Muslim refugees are fleeing the Islamic State group, or ISIS, or al-Qaida violence in their home countries.

Fourth: Our relationship with many other countries has been made more difficult. Most Muslim-majority countries interpreted the order as anti-Muslim. Allies Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Egypt are in a particularly difficult position. Other longtime allies including Great Britain, Germany, France, Australia and Japan expressed dismay.

These reactions were aided and abetted by our liberal media and Democratic politicians. Typifying Democratic hypocrisy, Sen. Schumer, D-New York, came to tears when discussing the order but had proposed pausing Syrian refugee admissions himself only 15 months ago.

So the damage is done, whether the order stands or not. Future diplomatic efforts in the Middle East are compromised. Changing perceptions will take years of patient work, not a Trump forte.

A large number of refugees fled from Muslim majority countries in recent years. How are they doing in their new surroundings? Experience to date is mixed but not always encouraging.

European countries admitting Muslim refugees have discovered that they often choose not to assimilate. France’s experience painfully illustrates this problem. Refugee unemployment is high, Muslim young men are alienated and susceptible to Islamist propaganda and a number of terrorist attacks have followed.

By contrast in the U.S., a majority of our 5 million-7 million Muslims converted here and are fully integrated into our society. Most of us find the occasional woman’s hajib no more threatening than a Jewish yarmulke or Catholic crucifix.

But we too have instances where Muslim immigrants have chosen not to integrate. For example, a significant Somali community in Minnesota furnished ISIS recruits in recent years. Firebrand imams in some U.S. mosques have incited anti-American sentiments among immigrants. (Then again, so did firebrand Jeremiah Wright, the Obamas’ preacher for 20 years.)

Our Constitution protects freedom of speech and association but reasonable citizens can only hope that the FBI and local police forces are monitoring situations like these. Unreasonable citizens, aka progressives and the mainstream media, call this Muslim profiling and object. But with the possibility of dozens of casualties on the line, I opt for court-approved, targeted surveillance.

Bottom line: Has Trump’s order made us safer? No, we are not. Some promises made on the campaign trail are best forgotten or at least tempered by reality.

Howard Sierer is a developing columnist for St. George News. The opinions stated in this article are his own and may not be representative of St. George News.

Email: hsierer@stgeorgeutah.com

Twitter: @STGnews

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16 Comments

  • dogmatic February 9, 2017 at 8:44 am

    An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
    Benjamin Franklin
    Sense we where attacked by Muslims in 9/11 American has changed. Americans are vetted every time we want to take a airplane. Security is told not to profile so it doesn’t matter if you where born American are not.
    So I really don’t give a $&@” about inconvenience of a few .

  • dogmatic February 9, 2017 at 8:58 am

    Howard, go back to the east are west coast are what ever liberal infested unamerican place your from.
    If you feel lost it’s because your in America now.

    • 556poor February 9, 2017 at 10:06 pm

      You dogmatic are awesome ????

  • desertgirl February 9, 2017 at 10:23 am

    Bottom line: everything changed after the 1st WTC bombing and exponentially since 911. Not just for America, but, the world how we address security needs a new set of rules; pragmatic not about ‘feelings’. Common sense and what should be a natural survival instinct dictates keeping out and removing as many obvious dangers as possible not protecting and importing risk. Vetting people, the most dangerous enemies from countries that hate western culture and the USA is what I want from my government; that is the job of government FIRST, not protecting and embracing other nations, religions, idealogical groups, much less high risk people from those places.

  • comments February 9, 2017 at 1:35 pm

    Not a good idea to let in any muslims from countries the US gov’t has bombed and terrorized and attempted to implement regime changes or simply regime destruction. What US policy has done to many of these muslims is likely unforgivable and we shouldn’t be surprised when they terrorize US citizenry as some sort of revenge bc of bad US policy. My point: the citizenry should not be forced to pay for the sins of its gov’t by letting in muslim terrorists, we don’t owe that to anyone and the ‘muslim ban’ is justified’. I’d like to see the saudi arabs banned also, but they’re regime is too ingrained into the US power establishment for that to happen. Bottom line: These muslims in many ways are justified in hating America and we have no logical reason to let any of them in. Muslims belong in muslim countries. It’s that simple.

    • voice of reason February 10, 2017 at 6:42 pm

      Just like the Irish belong in Ireland, the Chinese belong in China, etc.
      The conservative “anti-Muslim” crowd likes to ignore the fact that you are far more likely to be killed by a white, “Christian” male than you are by a refugee from any country.

      This kind of ignorant and hateful commentary makes me embarrassed to admit I live in Southern Utah.

      • Ladyk February 12, 2017 at 1:38 am

        While your comments may be “PC” these days your logic just isn’t accurate. Please keep in mind that throughout our history most people came here because the idea of becoming an “Americn” was their goal. They realized what this country had to offer them and they wanted it. The same does NOT hold true for those in the Muslim faith. We are loathed. They truly hate Americans and America. They believe we are evil and need to be wiped off the planet. So there is no comparison to the people of Ireland or any other country who hold what we have as the untimatè best.

  • comments February 9, 2017 at 1:48 pm

    Also keep in mind that the “ISIS” terrorist militant group has been supported by the US gov’t and Israel as a covert means to destabilize the regime in Syria. So essentially all these muslim refugees have been created in part by US policy to destabilize that regime, and then we as citizens are expected to deal with all these muslims being dumped on us by our own corrupt gov’t. The filth that is most of our own political elite have no allegiance to keeping American citizens safe from the muslim threat that they created. We can only hope that Trump can bring about more sensible muslim, refugee, and immigrant policies, because the filth that are “our” career politicians ARE the problem.

    • comments February 9, 2017 at 1:55 pm

      Oh, as far as the US supporting ISIS being a “conspiracy theory”, well it’s staring to become more widely known and even been mentioned by some in MSM. The only conspiracy theory was MSM’s and the Obongo Admin’s own narrative that ISIS was this thing that just grew out of nowhere. Obongo was supporting it the entire time. It was Obamas ISIS all along. It’s fascinating the extent of the lies that US gov’t and MSM can tell. Almost unbelievable, really–these fantasies that they concoct. Oh well, lol

  • ladybugavenger February 9, 2017 at 2:37 pm

    No we are not safer, but it’s a start of making a statement that we are on the lookout

  • commonsense February 9, 2017 at 9:10 pm

    Have to disagree and I usually support you Howard. Trump made his stand to protect the country.
    Now if a refugee turns terrorist, the Dems will have to take the wrap. It also has exposed the Tenth Circuit Court as political. 85% of their rulings have been over-turned. It’s San Francisco, duh!
    Trump can now quietly direct immigration officials to vet refugees from the dirty seven plus Venneseulia thoroughly.

  • 556poor February 9, 2017 at 10:10 pm

    time to put Americans first, people may be inconvenienced by extreme vetting but they should be happy they are even allowed into our country, we’re a sovereign nation and what we choose to be the entrance exam is what it is.

  • utahdiablo February 9, 2017 at 11:10 pm

    Going to start kicking some …* soon Howie….your not going to like it
    Ed. ellipsis: …*

  • Close The Borders February 10, 2017 at 5:10 pm

    The Muslims study the Quran, that teaches, lie to, and KILL the Infedel. As far as I am concerned, …!
    Ed. ellipsis.

  • Ladyk February 12, 2017 at 2:54 am

    About 25 years ago an friend set me up on a blind date with her step son. He was a few years older than I was but I agreed to go. He had been in the military and now worked for the CIA. His specialty was middle eastern study. I was young and pretty much clueless so he spent several hours educating me and I was facinaited. The one thing he made clear is THEY HATE US AND HAVE FOR A LONG TIME. We tend to be a forgiving nation. We are good people with a grest country that we love. SO we are understanding when people from other nations come in and want to start over. For the most part they are people who are willing to work hard to get their piece of the American Dream. This however does not hold truè for the majority of the Muslim countries. One of the problems we have is that we don’t like to single anyone out because of their faith so the word Muslim has become a buzz word for those who want to call us racist. The fact is that it isn’t the Christians in Iraq who want to hurt us. So we must learn to properly identify where the threat is coming from. So before you call me a racist just stop. I am simply telling you that in order to proteCT ourselves we have to know who wants to do us harm.

    For generations the Muslim faith has taught their followers that evil must be destroyed, ok we get that part. But it s who they identify as evil that we must come to understand. So take a look at what is happening in their own coutries. Who do they identify as evil, America and Israel. They don’t care about our religion. They hate our ideals. When you hate everything that someone stands for then you hate them. This has been taught in the homes of millions for generations and it is only getting worse. We want to try and parcel it out to say well this person or that person says they don’t hate us. We’ll they do. This guy made it very clear to me that they hate everything we stand for. They don’t want us in their country. I would dare any liberal to go take a flight to Iraq and get off the plane and say ” I come in peace” and see what happens. Very few try and even fewer live to tell about it.

    So, the question is, if we are not welcome in their country and they have clearly stated that they want us all dead, why let them in here?

    Now one can argue that those who have actually attacked us don’t come from the “banned” countries. The point is, it isn’t necessarily a country that is the problem it is a religion. Ok I know what you are saying. It can’t be the religion because there are many Muslims here that worship their religion here but never do anything to cause us a problem. Yup you are correct. Which is what I told my date. Then he told me 2 things that I will never forget. He said they have been patient a long time. They know that this is a long game and they can wait. The 2nd thing he said was interesting, and has since been confirmed by several Muslims who work with my husband ( different guy). Years ago they started teaching that their families need to become larger. You see years ago women from there use to be able to go to school, college and get jobs. Having large famis was not important. All of that has changed. Now they want 6-8 children per wife and men who breed well can have more than one wife. So my question was why would they want to do this. His answer, to breed the the America out of exhistance. I was like “WHAT” and he explained that if they go strictly to breeding and creating more Muslims they won’t need to go to war to be rid of us. Like I said, this has since been confirmed through a Co worker of my husbands. In fact he wasn’t very happy when my husband brought it up to him. It was like the secret had been found out.

    Now they are sitting back laughing their butts off Watching us rip each other apart. Watching us rip our Constitution apart. We are loosing our most valuable possession. Our freedoms are under attack…from within. Did you hear about the recent article demonstrating how many people think we should give up our right to free speech so that we don’t offend other people. Heaven forbid that we actually learn to agree to disagree and still get along. Since when did your opinion become hate speech? My daughter came home and told me that she and her friends were told to not talk about anything political because someone had been hurt by my daughter saying she likes what Trump has been saying about closing thè border. Apparently her friend who has now “come out” decided that saying Trumps name amounted to hate sspeech. In US history the teacher refused to talk about America history because talking about how great our nation is offends those who feel bad for the refugees. I found a constructive way to teach my daughter what a useful idiot was. Look it up if you don’t know.

    We will never defeat our enemies if we can’t properly identify them and we will loose our freedoms if we don’t value it enough to speak up to defend it. I don’t want to hurt anyone feelings and I don’t want to discriminate agains someone else because of their religion. But i refuse to just let someone walk up and take away the freedom my father and husband fought for.

    As for their breeding program….not much I can do about it, except for understand their motives behind it.

    To say that Trump’s ban ( GRRR IT ISN’T A BAN) makes us less safe is just nieve. They don’t carè about the ban. They have their plans and they are.marching forward with it. They don’t want to kill us more because we put a.120 day hold on them coming here. They simply play the game better than we do, so they start crying foul first and louder than anyone else. If they can make us let them in easier they will cry as much as possible. Who is the useful idiot now?

  • eddantes56 February 12, 2017 at 4:30 pm

    Mr. Sierer,

    You definitely live in a bubble. I’ll wager that during your time on the coasts, you have had zero contact with any so-called refugees from war-torn countries.

    You are entitled to your opinion; but it is just that; an opinion that is backed by no experience living in muslim majority countries and with no demonstrable evidence that you have a clue.

    Here is a response to your points.

    1. Your facts are wrong. MSM has not reported that the Senate subcommittee came up with 72 convictions since 9/11 from the targeted countries…..and they came up with that number without all of the data.
    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-02-11/did-judges-lie-new-report-finds-72-terrorists-came-countries-covered-trump-ban

    2. Your fear that the travel ban will increase the U.S. as a target……..why were a target before Trump’s order? Huh? You do not understand the islamist mindset. Let me help you…..They believe that this world belongs to Allah and that it is their duty to spread Allah’s law (Sharia) to the every corner of the earth. Those who oppose them oppose Allah and thus there are only three choices for the infidel, Die, convert or become a Dimi (second class citizen) by paying a tax to the Caliphate.

    3. You have zero evidence that the majority of Muslims fleeing the war-torn Middle East and other muslim countries are fleeing ISIS, et al. That is the narrative that you and the MSM are peddling…..How do you know their motives. Because that is what they say. First, these countries have no record-keeping/checking mechanism that would enable us to vett these people.

    Are you aware of two Muslim Brotherhood documents found in separate raids, Switzerland and, that lay out MB’s long term strategy to infiltrate western civilization and conduct “civilizational jihad”? Do you read at all?
    Here are two links
    *Found in Virginia in 2004, read what the mosque founder ElBarase and the MB is saying
    http://www.clarionproject.org/Muslim_Brotherhood_Explanatory_Memorandum
    *The Swiss found a document in 2001, after 9/11 that is called THE PROJECT…..it details MB plans to crush the West from within. http://archive.frontpagemag.com/readArticle.aspx?ARTID=4476

    *Stephen Couglin, former civilian intel analyst for the Joint Chiefs wrote the following piece, outling the MB’s use of groups in the U.S. To further its goals.
    http://www.investigativeproject.org/documents/misc/91.pdf

    4. Our relationship with Muslim countries has not been made more difficult due to Trump’s ban. Get this; these countries are not based on reason; they are based on force and the projection of interests. The only way to bring these failed states to heel is to project strength. The last 8 years have been a disaster worldwide and in the U.S. As miscreant attacks are everywhere.

    Finally, you have no evidence that the 5-7 million Muslims are FULLY INTEGRATED. That would presume that they love the Founding of this nation and the Anglo-Saxon Protestant underlying principles that created it. It also presumes that they have a reverence for our Founding Fathers. While there is some scattered evidence of this, I submit that Muslim like other ethnic and religious groups want to recreate their homeland and live with their own. Look at Lansing Michigan……it looks terrible and looks like the Middle East.

    If Mr. Sierer and his progressive thinkers really believed in the cause of the so-called “refugees”, then he would be inviting them into his neighborhood. Imagine, Stone Cliff, Kayenta or Entrada welcoming these “refugees”. I guarantee that would put an end to the refugee program, full stop. LOL.

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