But meanwhile, the federal bureaucracy grinds on, wreaking its routine havoc.
And concerning immigration—specifically our appalling refugee program—Monday, November 8, is an important deadline for us to exert pressure on some of those bureaucrats.
We need to make them aware that knowledgeable citizens who oppose their reflexive social-workers-to-the-world tendencies are watching what they do.
Specifically, Monday is the last day to submit comments (email is fine) about the State Department's intent to restart the Priority 3 ["P-3"] Family Reunification category of the refugee program.
"A refugee or asylee in the U.S. can petition for refugee admission for a parent and/or an unmarried child under 21, but DNA evidence of the claimed parent-child relationships must be established".
The reason the new requirement for DNA testing is being introduced: in 2008, spurred by reports of such fraud in the P-3 program, the Departments of State and Homeland Security did DNA testing on a sample of several thousand aspiring P-3 relatives-of-refugees in ten African countries. Massive fraud was discovered. In a surprisingly honest official fact sheet (Fraud in the Refugee Family reunification [Priority Three] Program, U.S. Department of State, February 3, 2009), the Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration reported:
"We initially tested a sample of some 500 refugees (primarily Somali and Ethiopian) in Nairobi, Kenya under consideration for U.S. resettlement through the P-3 program. After that sample suggested high rates of fraud, we expanded testing to Ethiopia, Uganda, Ghana, Guinea, Gambia and Cote d'Ivoire. Most of the approximately 3,000 refugees tested are from Somalia, Ethiopia, and Liberia, as these nationalities make up the vast majority of P-3 cases.
"It is important to note that the initial DNA testing was limited to members of families applying for the P-3 program, and not between the applicants and the anchor relative in the United States." [PN note: "Anchor relative"! So this use of "anchor", as in "anchor baby", goes official!]
"The rate of fraud varied among nationalities and from country to country, and is difficult to establish definitively as many individuals refused to agree to DNA testing.
"We were, however, only able to confirm all claimed biological relationships in fewer than 20% of cases (family units). In the remaining cases, at least one negative result (fraudulent relationship) was identified, or the individuals refused to be tested."
Thus the new requirement for DNA-matching between refugee or asylee here and P-3 candidate there is all to the good.
But, as Thomas Allen pointed out, a big loophole remains:
"There is no proof, via DNA verification, that the initial family unit is really a family unit. So a family can come over with children who are not related to each other and each of these children can serve as an anchor for a parent who then brings in other children and so on. Most of our current refugee influx is from polygamous societies which complicates the process further."
Your mission, VDARE weekend warriors: email your public comments to the State Department's bureaucrats, pointing out the loophole and, perhaps, expressing your general skepticism/unenthusiasm for the refugee program.
I sent such an email to State on Friday, November 5. I'll append it to this article as an example for others. However, my message is about 700 words, probably longer than most people will want to attempt. I expect 200 words will suffice.
To inform your opinion a bit more, and to provide sufficient resources so that all the comments to the State Department don't sound alike, I've assembled the following half-dozen pertinent newspaper articles. (Googling on this subject yielded slim pickings.)
Here are the articles' titles (with embedded links), authors, sources, and dates:
My submitted comment, below, was also informed more generally about our fraud-ridden refugee program by the chapter "How Many Refugees?" in Roy Beck's 1996 book, The Case Against Immigration. It's available for free as a 1.4-MB PDF download here. (That's apparently the book's manuscript. The chapter on refugees is pages 69 to 90 of that file.)
To get your blood pressure up (and suitable for writing to the State Department!), here is one tidbit about the refugee program from Beck's book:
"Most of the people who enter the country in those 100,000-plus refugee slots are not recognized by the United Nations as refugees; Congress and the president merely call them 'refugees' so they can use those slots, according to the State Department…The United States even allows 'refugees' to get their visas now but stay in their home countries until a more convenient year to move."
They fear for their lives in the old country, but actually moving ... now? ... mmmm ... that wouldn't be convenient. Right.
If the idea of responding to a federal agency's request for public comments sounds intimidating or daunting to you, remember: you don't need to be a pro!
As Ann Corcoran, co-proprietress of the Refugee Resettlement Watch blog, told me: "You don't have to be an expert, just at least say a few words in response to the Federal Register notice." She offers some suggestions for what to comment about here.
Here's the email text I sent to the State Department on November 5, under that subject line "DS-7656 AOR":
To Delicia Spruell:
As I understand it, the P-3 category has been suspended for about two years because of the massive fraud revealed by DNA testing (along with refusals to submit to such testing). The optimum public policy from the point of view of the American citizenry (for whom you work) is for P-3 to remain suspended. Two reasons:
1. Anyone accepted via refugee programs should individually meet the criteria for refugee status; otherwise, we're simply discussing a backdoor route to family-preference immigration (chain migration).
2. There is no proof, via DNA verification, that the initial "anchor" family unit is really a family unit. So such a family can come over with children who are not related to each other and each of these children can serve as an anchor for a parent, elsewhere. That parent then brings in other children. And so on. This is especially important when the sending societies of these "refugee" flows are polygamous, a point directly applicable to the "countries of fraud" that stimulated the P-3 suspension in the first place.
If the P-3 program is, nevertheless going to resume, then it is important to be much more sure that any anchor family unit is, indeed, a family unit. In practice this means DNA verification of each child with respect to both parents or ironclad documentation confirming adoptive status.
And in all cases, the anchor refugees should be responsible, in advance, for the costs of the P-3 DNA testing, with no reimbursement from U.S. taxpayer monies, whatever the outcome of the tests.
You will detect in the above my overall skepticism about our refugee acceptance policies. This skepticism is based on my substantial reading about the topic, which has led me to think that our refugee program is more about politics and evading quota limits on "regular" immigration than it is about true refugees.
My skepticism was strongly buttressed by a 2003 encounter with Jan Ting, professor of law at Temple U and former Assistant Commissioner of the INS under the first President Bush. Upon learning his background, I asked Ting, "Is it true what we hear — that 90% of refugee and asylee cases are fraudulent?" His instant response: "95%."
Ironically, a December 11, 2008 Washington Post article specifically about the P-3 shutdown gives an excellent, flagrant example. Here are the article's title, its URL, and the relevant paragraphs:
Torn Asunder in War, Then Peace: Citing Broad Fraud, U.S. Has Suspended Refugees' Reunification Applications
[excerpt from article follows]
"In other cases, refugee families who seem to have airtight cases to bring in their loved ones still fail to convince the authorities, who are especially suspicious these days.
"Fahima Aar, a Somali refugee who lives with her husband and six children in Centreville, Va., is trying to complete the family circle that was shattered the day government militiamen burst into her home in Mogadishu seven years ago. They killed her father and sent everyone else fleeing.
"Aar made her way to Ethiopia, Italy and the United States, where her husband and children eventually joined her. But her mother, Fatima, was left behind. When Aar applied to bring her and several siblings last year, the entire group was rejected. Now Fatima is 65 and her health is poor. Aar and her husband, an airport cargo worker, are struggling to support her on an income of $300 a week.
"'I don't know why they rejected her,' said Aar, whose spotless home is decorated with framed verses from the Koran.'Maybe she said the wrong information. Sometimes she forgets things. The hardest part is when I have to call and tell her I have no money to send her. I worry about her every day.'"
So Aar fled Somalia, arriving first in Ethiopia, then Italy, before reaching the United States. If she was truly a refugee, why didn't she stay in Ethiopia, which is a signatory to both the 1951 United Nations convention and the 1967 Geneva protocol? Or put another way, Aar was probably a refugee when she arrived in Ethiopia. After that, she was an immigrant looking for a better deal.
I know of another case like Aar's, written about in the Los Angeles Times in 1998. I fully expect a global study of refugee histories would reveal these two examples to be just the teeny tip of the iceberg.
Bozeman, Montana 59715
Hop to it, VDARE.com brigades! (Please!)
And keep in mind that Monday, November 8, deadline!!!!