Members of Congress: We need more Iraqi refugees (Afghans too)

Following the increasingly common refrain—we broke it, we own it—19 Members of Congress earlier this month wrote to President Obama seeking his leadership in extending the deadline for the so-called Special Immigrant Visa program for Iraqis and Afghans who ‘helped us’ when we sought to give them a free country.  I thought we succeeded, isn’t that why we can leave now?

Longtime readers may recall that the Special Immigrant Visa was created by an amendment to the Defense Authorization Act of 2008 (here is one post I wrote at the time).   It was an amendment by Senator Ted Kennedy that gave the US government permission to grant Visa’s and give all the perks of the refugee program to certain qualified Iraqis.  There was little debate and since the amendment was attached to a Defense Authorization bill, ol’ Ted knew that Bush had to sign it.

Waad Ramadan Alwan. His fingerprints were on an IED in Iraq, but he lied and got into the US as a refugee!

Now we have a bunch of bellyaching stories about how we didn’t fulfill our promise and bring enough of these people into the US.  But, none of the stories tell the reader why we have some problems with the influx of Iraqis.  First, remember that ‘shock-of-shocks’ we had a couple of Iraqis who went to Kentucky convicted on terrorism charges (here is one story on the case), so it has caused even the Obama Administration to vet the Iraqis more carefully.   And, then the Iraqis who have come to the US are experiencing high levels of unemployment (46%) and of welfare use (95% on food stamps)!   Some have even returned to the Middle East in disgust.   But, you would never know about the problems from the news stories.

Here isTruthdig (yes, but only a part of the truth, LOL!).

We have brought ONLY 80,000 IRAQIS!!!  Can you believe it!

….the U.S. 10 years later is loath to invite too many of our friends inside our borders. Of the 1.5 million Iraqi refugees who have fled the country, only about 80,000, or 5 percent, have been resettled here in the U.S.

The author goes on to tout how great Sweden has been compared to the US, but fails to mention that Sweden is now sending Iraqis BACK to Iraq.

Truthdig continues:

Most Iraqi refugees, along with those internally displaced in Iraq, have received little attention from the nation that sought to bring them freedom.   [Little attention?—ed]*

[….]

The Special Immigrant Visas (SIV) for Iraqi and Afghan civilians, created in 2008, were meant to expedite the process of resettlement for those who provided “faithful and valuable service” to U.S. efforts in the wars and who might face “ongoing serious threats” as a result of their actions.

Flawed criteria for admittance, coupled with technical difficulties many refugees face in the application process, have led to a dearth of visas. Of the possible 25,000 SIVs, only 5,500 have been issued. The program, which anticipated four times as many resettlements, expired at the end of fiscal year 2012, failing many applicants who have struggled to relocate themselves and their families.  [They don’t tell you that many potential refugees have also heard the stories about the US menial labor or high unemployment rates and have had second thoughts about coming.—ed]

Earlier this month, 19 members of the House of Representatives sent a letter to President Barack Obama asking him to extend the program. They cited problems of inefficiency, lack of transparency and discrepancies between the Afghan and Iraqi SIVs—22 percent of the available Iraqi SIVs have been approved, but only 12 percent of Afghan ones have been issued.

Frankly, I don’t know how Obama has any authority to do anything, other than cheer these guys on.  They have to write legislation and get it passed which surely they will do by sneaking the bill on as an amendment to another more important piece of legislation in the dark of night (like Kennedy did last time).

Here are the nineteen who want to bring more Iraqis to your towns who will be largely unemployed and in need of social services:

The members signed onto the letter are Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Andre Carson (D-IN), Jon Conyers (D-MI), Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Jeff Duncan (R-SC), Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) Chris Gibson (R-NY), Duncan Hunter (R-CA), Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), Dave Loebsack (D-IA), Alan Lowenthal (D-CA), Ted Poe (R-TX), Dave Reichert (R-WA), Adam Schiff (D-CA), Adam Smith (D-WA), Steve Stivers (R-OH), Marc Veasey (D-TX), Peter Welch (D-VT), and Frank Wolf (R-VA).

* Little attention!  We have 564 previous posts on Iraqi refugees in our special category specifically for Iraqi refugee news, so I find Truthdig’s (Thomas Hedges, Center for Study of Responsive Law) suggestion ludicrous that little attention has been paid to Iraqi refugees!

Come to think of it, what ever happened to those Iraqis arrested on rape charges in 2012?  One of them had helped US troops and an American soldier helped him get to Colorado?

Update: Here is a story I meant to post this past week about Iraqis struggling in California.

Canada: Is access to health care a basic right for illegal aliens?

They call them failed asylum seekers—aliens who have arrived in Canada illegally, asked for refugee status, but come from countries that are capable of protecting them and so are being denied the right to stay in Canada.  We mentioned this policy earlier this month, here.   In the past they received free medical care, but no more.

America pay attention because as Obamacare kicks in and we can’t afford it, we will be headed down this same road.  Socialized medicine—free to all—cannot survive.

Here is the news from The Star:

Immigration minister Jason Kenney: They have to be real refugees to get our free healthcare.

Israel Sosa’s deportation has been put on hold as the 50-year-old battles colon cancer.

The failed refugee claimant from the Dominican Republic has been allowed to stay in Canada on humanitarian grounds for now — but he has been banned from getting treatment under Ottawa’s Interim Federal Health (IFH) Program for refugees.

The Toronto man could choose to delay treatment and face death — or go into debt paying his medical costs.   [He could go into debt and pay it off over time, could he not?—ed]

That’s the new reality for asylum seekers from the so-called “safe countries” — ones such as Mexico and the Czech Republic, which are deemed democratic countries capable of state protection — as well as failed refugee claimants.

They are no longer eligible for government health care as of last June, unless they put public health at risk. The old program covered them for emergency and basic health care, similar to what is included with OHIP.

Immigration Minister Jason Kenney has said these are not legitimate refugees and taxpayers should not be held accountable for their care. The cuts are expected to save Ottawa $100 million over five years.

“It is very important to distinguish between a refugee, an asylum claimant and a failed asylum claimant. Canadians have been clear that they do not want illegal immigrants and bogus refugee claimants receiving free, gold-plated health-care benefits,” Alexis Pavlich, Kenney’s press secretary, told the Star this week.

However, critics say the federal government cannot just sit back and watch these patients suffer as resource-stretched hospitals demand prepayments for medical procedures and tests.

A court will decide if the cuts are unconstitutional:

Two national organizations made up of physicians and lawyers are suing Ottawa, arguing the health cuts are unconstitutional and illegal under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms. The case is expected to be heard in a year.

There is much more, more sad cases to tweak the Canadian taxpayers’ guilt, read it all.

This is what I don’t get, why can’t all the complainers start a foundation to collect private charity to fund some of these medical cases.  Maybe they can’t all be saved, but some would and surely they could find enough rich people/celebrities and so forth willing to show their generosity to the poor immigrants.

Another 1000 Bhutanese headed for Canada

Just now looking over the website for Canada’s Immigration Department I see that they just this week announced that they will take another 1000 Bhutanese from camps in a safe country—Nepal—which would bring  their resettled Bhutanese population up to a total of 6,500.  Not to be too picky about the facts, but the Bhutanese are of Nepali descent and are in Nepal, again a safe country, but somehow they are persecuted refugees in need of resettlement to Canada (and to the US where our totals are now approaching the 70,000 mark!) and will be eligible for free, free, free health care?

Guys with non-American sounding names busted for food stamp fraud

Someone else notices!   I’ve been writing about food stamp fraud (the big stuff—trafficking) for five years and have noticed a trend, now I see another blogger has noticed.  The website is the Libertarian Republican.   Here is how the blogger wraps up his post headlined like mine above (which I borrowed from these guys).

Editor’s note – “age and address [ethncitiy and immigration status] unknown, or “unmentioned” by the leftist-biased, diversity-obsessed media.”

Yup!  That is pretty much the trend.  Sometimes the mainstream media will give the age (they did here), but ethnicity and immigration status almost never.  Although a tip-off sometimes happens when the story mentions that money (your money!) was wired to another country.

Here is the news  from Pennsylvania that prompted this (one of several) new food stamp fraud busts in my alerts.  The alleged fraudsters are Samson Dweh (Liberian maybe?) and Emile Bizimungu (Rwandan?) and they are being busted on wire fraud (hmmmm!) as well as food stamp fraud.   This is our second Pennsylvania bust in recent days.  Remember Kuldip Kaur pouting in Pottstown, here.

Two Brentwood men who ran separate small grocery stores in the South Hills were indicted Wednesday for wire fraud and food stamp fraud, documents filed today in U.S. District Court show.

Samson Dweh, 30, ran Mariama African Store in Carrick, according to the indictment naming him.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture authorized him to begin accepting food stamps in February 2009.

Starting in August 2010, according to the indictment, Mr. Dweh started paying cash for food stamp benefits, paying around 50 cents on each dollar of benefit the customer sought to cash in.

He would then bill the U.S.D.A. as if the benefits were spent on food, according to the indictment.

Through last year, Mr. Dweh redeemed more than $200,000 in food stamp benefits, “a substantial portion of such benefits having been unlawfully purchased for cash; accepted as payment on credit accounts or loans; and/or accepted as payment for ineligible items,” according to the indictment.

Emile Bizimungu, 31, faces similar accusations as regards the Dollar Grocery Center in Mt. Oliver, according to the indictment against him.

The USDA approved him to accept food stamp cards in Aug. 2011. Starting a month later, according to the indictment, he began trading benefits for cash, and the total reached more than $40,000, according to the charges.

Besides the media never telling us the nationality or ethnicity of the perps, the other huge trend I’ve noticed is that most of this big fraud of the food stamp program is being run out of immigrant-run convenience stores.

To Arizona  

Dollar Dayz in Phoenix, AZ busted this week. $700,000 in fraud alleged.  Photo: 3TV

 

We have another case, a big one!, in Arizona yesterday where we aren’t even given the alleged fraudsters names, so will keep an eye on it and they will eventually have to tell us who is ripping off the food stamp program in Phoenix to the tune of $700,000!

From the Arizona Attorney General’s Office:

Phoenix (Wednesday, March 27, 2013) – A multi-agency task force today announced an investigation leading to the identification of four people who work at Dollar Dayz general store located at 1602 West Buckeye Road in Phoenix for Illegally Conducting an Enterprise, Fraudulent Schemes and Artifices, Money Laundering, Unlawful Use of Food Stamps and Computer Tampering.

The investigation comes after months of a coordinated undercover operation involving the United States Department of Agriculture – Office of the Inspector General (USDA OIG), Phoenix Police Department (PD), the Arizona Attorney General’s Office, and the Arizona Department of Economic Security, Office of Special Investigations.

At 12 PM, a Special Assignment Unit of the Phoenix PD made entry into the Dollar Dayz general store, securing it and allowing search warrants to be served so that criminal and civil evidence could be gathered.  Examples of evidence include cash, bank records, extraneous food stamp cards, and businessledgers.

In this case, it is alleged that on multiple occasions the store provided cash to individuals in exchange for SNAP (food stamp) benefits in fraudulent transactions during the course of the investigation.  Preliminary data from USDA estimates fraud against the SNAP program exceeded $700,000 from this store location alone since 2010.

When searching around through other accounts of the Dollar Dayz bust for the alleged fraudsters names, one report mentioned that the shelves were nearly bare in this store—an early tip-off sign for you if you have a convenience store like this one in your neighborhood.  The other day I mentioned at my other blog, here, what some of the signs were of a fraudulent convenience store.

I’ll report back when I find out who was arrested in Arizona.

For more on food stamp fraud cases like these, type ‘food stamp fraud’ into our search function and I’ll bet there are a hundred posts on this type of fraud perpetrated by immigrant-run stores.

About the photo:  There is more on the case at AZ Family.com, here.

Big day at RRW yesterday—What were readers most interested in?

For some reason the number of readers arriving at RRW is increasing.  The other day we reported some of the topics that were most often searched that were bringing people to our blog.

Doing well by doing good! George Rupp’s salary/benefits package increased by just short of $90,000 in five years! Did yours? Photo:  IRC website

Yesterday our numbers were way above normal and what most everyone was looking for was information on how much George Rupp, the head honcho at the International Rescue Committee (IRC), a federal refugee contractor, is making.

I guess they are curious about how much former British Foreign Secretary, David Miliband, will make when he comes on board to replace Rupp in September.

No surprise, readers from the UK this week surpassed our numbers from Canada, which is usually second to the US in our reader international round-up.

LOL!  Here are ten searches in the top fifteen that brought readers to RRW yesterday:

International rescue committee ceo salary
irc ceo salary
dr george rupp salary
international rescue committee controversy
george rupp salary
international rescue committee salary
international rescue committee salaries
salary of irc ceo
international rescue committee salary ranges
international rescue committee income

Google was directing most searches to this old post I wrote in 2008 critical of the IRC.  It became our top post yesterday.  In that post we quoted Rupp’s salary as $357,657 (from the 2005 Form 990).  Since so many readers were seeing that post I quickly updated the information to include his salary and benefits from the 2010 Form 990.

The IRC is a $431 million dollar organization which gets $247 million from YOU, the taxpayer (page 9 of their most recent Form 990, here).  And, guess where you have to go to find out the salaries being paid at the IRC?  Page 254 of their 299-page Form 990.  George Rupp, their head honcho makes a cool $447,432 in salary and benefits which beats Obama’s $400,000 salary!

For further comparison, Members of Congress make around $175,000.

So, the next time you hear the IRC boo-hooing that they don’t have enough of your tax dollars for the poor struggling refugees the IRC has placed in your town, consider the salaries they are paying the top brass (they have a boatload of VPs in the six figures too!).

Endnote:  To be clear, if this was a truly private business that took no taxpayer money, what they pay their CEO is none of the public’s business.   However, when they take gobs of your money for their work (their “charity”!) it becomes our business.

Former British Foreign Secretary to head large US federal refugee contractor—the IRC

Update March 28th:   The salary issue is a big deal for readers, here.

The International Rescue Committee, one of nine US refugee resettlement contractors (second largest in terms of number of refugees it resettles) is hiring David Miliband, one of the last of the so-called Blairites to oversee its multi-million dollar operation headquartered in New York City.  The present chairman, former President of Columbia University, Charles Rupp will pass the reins (and presumably the huge salary* he receives) to Miliband in September.

New President of the International Rescue Committee, David Miliband

Here is the IRC’s press release (Miliband is also a global-warming-is-destroying-the-planet believer! Climate refugees here we come!):

The International Rescue Committee (IRC) today announced the appointment of David Miliband, 47, former Foreign Secretary of the United Kingdom, as its president and CEO, effective September this year. He will succeed George Rupp, who has led the global humanitarian relief and development organization since stepping down as president of Columbia University in 2002.

Over the last 15 years, Miliband has had a distinguished political career in the United Kingdom. From 2007 to 2010, he served as the youngest U.K. Foreign Secretary in three decades, driving advancements in human rights and representing the United Kingdom throughout the world. In 2006, as U.K. Secretary of State for the Environment, he spearheaded the groundbreaking Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Bill, establishing the world’s first legally binding framework for reducing carbon emissions.

[….]

“David is an experienced world leader and a man of both action and character,” Rupp said, “as his record as Foreign Secretary — including his work for conflict resolution in the former Yugoslavia, his leadership in calling for a political settlement in Afghanistan, and his drive for education reform in Pakistan and human rights in Sri Lanka — attests. His insights, ability and commitment will be tremendous assets. I look forward to witnessing this next exciting chapter of the IRC’s incredible journey of helping the most desperate people move from harm to home.”

Read it all.  There is a big smooch from Bill Clinton near the end.

Miliband is the eldest son of Marxist theorist Ralph Miliband (here at wikipedia) and here the UK Daily Mail gives us some juicy bits of information on the politician who is quitting politics (ha! ha!) for a “dream job” running a charity.  In fact, in his new job Miliband will have a larger world stage on which to be a politician and have a huge salary from the US taxpayer to boot! (Take that brother Ed!).   Indeed, the IRC is one of those NGOs (non-governmental organizations) mucking around in world affairs behind the scenes (CIA?) and they get to do it hiding under a ‘white hat’ humanitarian cover.

This is going to be fun to watch!

Photo:  The photo of Miliband is one of many at the UK Daily Mail story on Miliband’s dream job, so please go read the story!

* Huge salary I mentioned most recently here in December:

The IRC (which wants your nursing services for free) is a $431 million dollar organization which gets $247 million from YOU, the taxpayer (page 9 of their most recent Form 990, here).  And, guess where you have to go to find out the salaries being paid at the IRC?  Page 254 of their 299-page Form 990.  George Rupp, their head honcho makes a cool $447,432 in salary and benefits which beats Obama’s $400,000 salary!

Syrians flooding into Lebanon bring instability and job competition, so much for Muslim charity

Here is a story from last week that I never got around to mentioning (thanks to a reader for sending it).  Lebanon is being overwhelmed by the arrival of Syrian refugees and anger and resentment is growing among the Lebanese.  What!  I thought Muslims were the most welcoming people in the world (that’s what the UN told us, here).

Before I get to the story, check out this map of Syria and its neighbors.  Do you know who isn’t taking any refugees?  Uber-wealthy Saudi Arabia, as we learned recently, is the fifth most-desired destination for would-be migrants following, the US, the UK, Canada and France, but has closed its door to refugees.  The UN never criticizes Saudi Arabia for wanting to keep their country wealthy and for their own kind of people.  And, I bet all those Muslims (29 million!) who want to live in S.A. believed the myth about Islamic charity too!

Syrians are flowing to Turkey, Jordan, Iraq and Lebanon, but not wealthy Saudi Arabia

Stories like this one at the Los Angeles Times will be used to soften you up for when the refugee advocates begin clamoring (probably in May!) for you to “welcome” some nice Syrians to your towns and cities.

TRIPOLI, Lebanon — Khaled Naaman doesn’t hide his disdain for the Syrian government, a widely shared sentiment in this northern Lebanese city, where many harbor dark memories of Damascus’ years of military occupation.

His impoverished neighborhood, Bab Tabbaneh, stands as a bastion of support for Syrian rebels seeking to oust President Bashar Assad; their tricolor banner flutters from buildings and is spray-painted on walls. The district has also welcomed multitudes of refugees seeking to escape the Syrian conflict.

But now after almost two years of a steady influx of displaced Syrians, Naaman and other Lebanese citizens in Bab Tabbaneh are growing weary. Many blame the newcomers for shrinking wages and job opportunities and increasing rents and prices for groceries, car repairs and necessities.

“Syrians are everywhere and they are taking jobs,” said Naaman, a grizzled native of Tripoli in his mid-40s who ekes out a living selling vegetables, having retired from his position as a right-hand man for a now-deceased leader of one of this city’s many militias.

The anger vented by Naaman and others is indicative of a growing unease across Lebanon about the steady stream of refugees, who they fear may destabilize Lebanon’s brittle political and social balance.

Each day, as many as 1,000 Syrians enter Lebanon, a nation of 4.5 million people wedged between Syria, Israel and the Mediterranean Sea. Lebanon, about a quarter the size of Switzerland, sits astride some of the Middle East’s most volatile sectarian and ethnic fault lines.

More than 400,000 Syrians have fled to Lebanon since the uprising began two years ago, authorities say, adding to a sizable Syrian population already here.

Unlike in Turkey, Jordan and Iraq, other major destinations for Syrian refugees, there are no formal camps in Lebanon. Lebanese leaders are loath to go that route, recalling how semiautonomous Palestinian enclaves helped detonate the Lebanese civil war, a sectarian bloodletting that lasted from 1975 to 1990 and left about 150,000 dead and much of the country in ruins. The Syrian military entered Lebanon in 1976 and didn’t exit until 2005, after allegations it was involved in the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

There is more, read it all.

Go here for our archive on Syrian refugees (so far!).

Leftwing do-gooders and big business join forces to bring in the immigrants

According to a new report by the Sunlight Foundation, $1.5 billion has been spent by mega-corporations (seeking compliant and cheap labor) for a lobbying campaign in support of “comprehensive immigration reform” (aka amnesty) over the last five years.

If you are a “progressive” (or LOL! one of the ‘church’ federal refugee contractors) now joined at the hip with big business, doesn’t that give you just the tiniest moment of pause?  In fact, doesn’t that put you in the Wall Street fat cat camp?

Catholic Charities in Boston announcing support for “comprehensive immigration reform” in 2010. Money! Money! Money!

From the Daily Caller:

A loose alliance of business and political groups has spent almost $1.5 billion since late 2007 to rewrite the nation’s immigration law according to a new report.

The flood of money hired 3,136 lobbyists at 678 lobbying groups to pass one or more of 987 small or large bills, said the March 25 report from the  Sunlight Foundation.

“[I]n the five years (2008-2012) since the reform last died on the Senate floor, we count 6,712 quarterly lobbying reports filed by 678 lobbying organizations in 170 sectors mentioning 987 unique bills, associated with more than $1.5 billion in lobbying spending,” the Sunlight Foundation’s Lee Drutman and Alexander Furnas write.

The report corroborates lobbyists’ recent comments to The Daily Caller that business and progressive groups are spending very heavily to pass a joint “comprehensive immigration bill” this year, which could include enhanced guest worker program and some form of amnesty.

The report doesn’t even take into account the money spent in 2013!

The Sunlight Foundation’s report, however, does not focus on the 2013 fight….

Kind of amazing how much money it takes to make the American public do something it doesn’t want to do!

Endnote:  the photo is from this press release from Catholic Charities.