PORTLAND — Two men from the Twin Cities charged with welfare fraud appeared in federal court Monday seeking release from jail.
At an afternoon hearing, U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge John Rich III ordered Abdirashid Ahmed, 38, of Lewiston released on $5,000 bond after seizing his passport.
Rich said Ahmed would be equipped with an electronic monitoring device to ensure he does not leave Androscoggin County.
Ahmed was kept Monday night in federal custody at Cumberland County Jail. He was expected to be escorted Tuesday morning to Lewiston and released into the custody of the U.S. Probation Office. He must get permission from that office if he were to seek to leave Androscoggin County in the future, Rich said.
The other day we postedabout a delegation of Somalis going to Aroostook County Maine at the invitation of local business leaders.
Here we learn a bit more about the potential move by Somali “Bantu” out of Lewiston. From WAGMTV:
This group of Somali immigrants from Lewiston are at the SAD 1 Farm learning about agriculture opportunities in Aroostook County.
Muhidsin Libah says, “there’s overcrowding in the Lewiston area. So we are at the process of looking for another place to resettle.”
Through the help of the Maine Community Foundation and Northern Maine Community college these immigrants are getting the chance to experience all of what Aroostook County can offer them in terms of resettling.
Steven Rowe says, “Aroostook County has lost population and would like to attract more families to this part of the state and we have the Somali Bantu Farm families in Lewiston that are looking for more land to farm.”
The Somalis need housing to accommodate families with TEN members.
Libhah says, “the biggest problem in the Lewiston- area is housing because we are large families.”
Their average families consists of almost 10 people. Libah says adequate housing where lead is not an issue is important.
Somali Bantus: What you need to know:
They are not the same as the so-called Somali “skinnies” and they became Muslims to save themselves when Arabs enslaved them hundreds of years ago. Wikipediahas a good discussion about them. (And since there is so much discussion about slavery in America these days, I thought you might like to know something about Muslims enslaving Africans.)
I was especially interested in the fact that Tanzania wanted to take the Somali Bantu refugees nearly two decades ago, but the UN stymied the plan and sent them to the US instead.
The Indian Ocean slave trade was multi-directional and changed over time.
To meet the demand for menial labor, black Africans from southeastern Africa captured by Arab slave traders were sold in cumulatively large numbers over the centuries to customers in Morocco, Libya, Somalia, Egypt, Arabia, the Persian Gulf, India, the Far East and the Indian Ocean islands.
From 1800 to 1890, between 25,000–50,000 black African slaves are thought to have been sold from the slave market of Zanzibar to the Somali coast.
In the 1840s, the first fugitive slaves from the Shebelle valley began to settle in the Jubba valley. By the late 1890s, when Italians & British occupied the Jubaland area, an estimated 35,000 former Bantu slaves were already settled there.
The Italian colonial administration abolished slavery in Somalia at the turn of the 20th century by decree of the King of Italy. Some Bantu groups, however, remained enslaved until the 1910s in the areas not totally dominated by the Italians, and continued to be despised and discriminated against by large parts of Somali society.
Unlike Somalis, most of whom are traditionally nomadic herders, Bantus are mainly sedentary subsistence farmers. The Bantus’ predominant “Negroid” physical traits also serve to further distinguish them from Somalis. Among these phenotypic characteristics of the Bantu are kinky (jareer) hair, while Somalis are soft-haired (jilec). Bantus are also shorter, darker and more muscular, with broad facial features.
The majority of Bantus have converted to Islam, which they first began embracing in order to escape slavery.
In 1999, the United States classified the Bantu refugees from Somalia as a priority and the United States Department of State first began what has been described as the most ambitious resettlement plan ever from Africa, with thousands of Bantus scheduled for resettlement in America. In 2003, the first Bantu immigrants began to arrive in U.S. cities, and by 2007, around 13,000 had been resettled to cities throughout the United States with the help of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the U.S. State Department, and refugee resettlement agencies across the country.
Prior to the United States’ agreement to accommodate Bantu refugees from Somalia, attempts were made to resettle the refugees to their ancestral homes in southeastern Africa. Before the prospect of emigrating to America was raised, this was actually the preference of the Bantus themselves. In fact, many Bantus voluntarily left the UN camps where they were staying, to seek refuge in Tanzania. Such a return to their ancestral homeland represented the fulfillment of a two-century old dream.
While Tanzania was initially willing to grant the Bantus asylum, the UNCHR did not provide any financial or logistical guarantees to support the resettlement and integration of the refugees into Tanzania. The Tanzanian authorities also experienced additional pressure when refugees from neighbouring Rwanda began pushing into the western part of the country, forcing them to retract their offer to accommodate the Bantus.
By the late 2000s, the situation in Tanzania had improved, and the Tanzanian government began granting Bantus citizenship and allocating them land in areas of Tanzania where their ancestors are known to have been taken from as slaves.
Editor: If you visit RRW often, you know that we occasionally post comments (and guest opinion pieces) from readers. This was sent to our gmail account a few days ago and I wanted you to see it. I’ll make an observation at the end.
From someone whose family has lived in Lewiston for almost 100 years:
I just wanted to give you an update on what Refugee Resettlement can do to a city, Lewiston, ME is the home of my Grandparents, since the early 20’s, yes the 1920’s.
Most of my siblings were born in and around Lewiston, as well as my Mother, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc.
I was really surprised when I returned after being away for about 20 years, to see the Somalian refugees in the town. I don’t mind other people, but the sheer numbers of people, then I spoke to my cousins who have lived there all their lives, and they explained the issues of crime, school violence, poverty, rejection of American values, and the general hatred of women by the Somali refugees.
They kept saying, we can’t get out here to look at a location where family used to live, and how the area had really gone down hill since the refugees arrived. Some of my cousins were victims of violence from Somali Gangs, and that the schools were in shambles because they couldn’t handle the language and culture issues that arise when you dump 15,000 Somali’s on a small town in Maine.
The destruction is irreversible, and horrific, I cried when I saw some of the town and how much it had changed. For example Kennedy park was a beautiful place where my Mom and sisters went to picnic and how nice it was. We were told to stay in the car because Somali drug dealers had taken over the park, and it wasn’t safe.
This type of immigration, the dumping of large numbers of refugees, does not work, it doesn’t help integration.I’m from Orange County California, I went to school with Mexican Gangs, who had their territory, Vietnamese gangs that arrived in large numbers in the 70’s and Korean Gangs that had arrived in the 60’s. Immigrants do not integrate when we drop them in large numbers, it doesn’t work, they don’t integrate.
I love the diversity of America, I am the product of immigrants, but all you have to do is look at what we have done in the past to see that mass integration [does he mean mass immigration?—ed] does not work. We need to drop these immigrants in small numbers across America so they can integrate and become part of the culture instead of allowing them to cluster in large numbers which means that integration will be slow if at all.
My thoughts on this issue of numbers and integration…
First, the Open Borders Left wants to use the word ‘integration’ rather than the word ‘assimilation,’ see here.
But, more importantly readers should know that refugees move in America—especially Somalis who got to Lewiston many years ago after they ‘discovered’ Maine’s generous welfare (see here).
Somalis can be placed (and they are) all over America by the resettlement contracting agencies, but often quickly move to be with their own kind of people in Minneapolis, Columbus, Seattle, San Diego, Lewiston and elsewhere.
So for all of you pushing for your governors to block resettlement (it will help some), remember though that you can’t stop secondary migration!
Say for example, the Refugee Admissions Program eventually allows certain states (governors) to stop the placement of refugees in their states, and say Vermont wants refugees and New Hampshire doesn’t, then they will place them in Vermont, but then encourage them to move over to New Hampshire after a few months. Likewise as Minnesota opens its arms to more Somalis they will eventually drift in to neighboring states! (Hijra!)
So, yes, integration/assimilation can’t happen when ethnic enclaves build in certain cities, but…..
The real problem, in my opinion, is that the overall numbers being admitted to the US are too high!
We need an immigration time out!
This post is filed in our ‘comments worth noting/guest posts’ category,here. Our Lewiston archive is here.
“I think he’s doing a lot, every day I’m turning on CNN to see what he did and who he pissed off.”
Mainer Jim Nelson
They may not be protesting in the streets, but voters in towns seeing their communities transformed by refugees almost overnight, support Donald Trump’s efforts to rein-in immigration from certain countries.
No time to thoroughly analyze both reports, but here is a bit of the story from Lewiston, Maine where many residents are happy with President Trump’s temporary slowdown of refugees from certain countries. I don’t know this guy, but he speaks common sense, and I know exactly how he feels about watching CNN!
I think he’s doing a lot,” says Jim Nelson. “Every day I’m turning on CNN to see what he did and who he pissed off.”
Nelson says he voted for Trump and he’s happy he did. He says doesn’t always like how the president acts, but that Trump is quickly fulfilling campaign promises.
That includes the president’s recent travel ban, which affects immigrants from seven countries, including Somalia.
“This country was made on immigrants. I mean, that’s exactly why the United States exists. We’re a melting pot. We can’t lose sight of that,” Nelson says.
But he says he’s truly mystified by the local protests sparked by Trump’s order.
“On the front page of yesterday’s paper you got this little girl crying, and she’s a Somalian (sic) and she can’t see her grandmother, and ‘Oh, my God.’ You know, she can’t see her grandmother for six months. What about the people that got blown up down in Florida? What about those people? They can’t ever see their people again.” Nelson says.
Here is the Minneapolis Star Tribune about reactions in Faribault, another small city being overloaded with Somali refugees. By the way, the population of Faribault was 23,594 in 2014, and Lewiston was 36,299 in 2014 (it had lost 293 residents since 2010, wonder why?).
FARIBAULT, MINN. – In her years of selling burgers and omelets in the heart of downtown Faribault, Janna Viscomi has seen changes she never expected.
For Viscomi, the new travel ban ordered by President Donald Trump that suspends refugee resettlement for 120 days and blocks entry for 90 days for citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries comes as mostly welcome news.
“I think slowing things down would be good,” she said this week, taking a short break after the lunch rush. “I don’t want to see families separated, but in the other regard, there needs to be somebody saying, ‘Hey, Let’s breathe here. Let’s breathe.’ ”
Reporter then describes pro-immigrant rallies in big cities. (Faribault is Trump country as was Lewiston on November 8th!)
Yet in other places, such as Faribault, the move has been welcomed by residents who feel the cost and pace of immigration is too much too fast. Trump won Faribault’s precincts with 50.4 percent of the vote in November, compared with 41.5 percent for Democrat Hillary Clinton.
Faribault, like other small- to medium-sized cities throughout Minnesota in recent years, has seen its mostly European ancestry make room for new arrivals from Cambodia, Laos, Mexico, Central America and Somalia.
And, of course, like much of Minnesota we see Somalis are supplying the cheap labor for BIG MEAT!
In many places, it’s the food processing plants that draw immigrants eager for work. It’s no different here, where the Jennie-O Turkey Store operates.