But even more interesting news is linked here about the fact that Somalis and other African refugees are not doing well in Oregon (are they doing well anywhere?).
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Defense attorneys will argue Wednesday morning that a Portland, Oregon, man convicted of terrorism charges should be acquitted or granted a new trial.
Oral arguments will focus on the government’s use of evidence and its reliance on surveillance obtained through extrajudicial means.
The attorneys for Mohamed Mohamud (pictured in a mugshot at left) say prosecutors failed to notify them of information derived under the U.S. Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act until Mohamud had already been convicted.
That failure, they say, withheld important information from the defense team and violated Mohamud’s constitutional rights.
Prosecutors responded in pre-hearing briefs that they didn’t disclose any new information when they informed Mohamud’s defense team of the surveillance in November.
Somali Community of Oregon
That story links us to an older article about the formation of the Somali American Council of Oregon which was started to “bring the Somali community together.” In refugee industry lingo the Somali Community of Oregon is an ECBO (Ethnic Community Based Organization) which is eligible to receive your tax dollars to act as a “community organizing” and advocacy group (you know like what Obama did before he started running for elective office, that kind of organizing).
ECBOs stand up for their ethnic people and make sure their people get signed up for whatever they are entitled to. Usually they register their people to vote as well. And, if their people get in trouble with the law they go to bat for them (like the Christmas tree bomber).
See our category on ECBOs here.
Now check out this story from 2013 about the rough time the 10,000 plus Somalis of Oregon are having. Weren’t we told that refugees are self-sufficient at high rates and that we weren’t importing poverty?
Recently we reported that 63% of Somalis in Minnesota live in poverty, and in Oregon it appears to be about the same rate!
The surveillance, arrest and conviction of Mohamed Osman Mohamud for domestic terrorism has created a watershed moment for Oregon’s Somalis. Before the case, the community was scattered, made up of many small groups, each with different regional, tribal and religious traditions.
Now the community, estimated at 10,000 people, is coming together through the Somali American Council of Oregon.
“We want to bring everyone together to build trust and faith in one another,” says Mussé Olol, (pictured) chair of the council.
Right now, many Somali-born parents fear their children cannot thrive in America. Their challenges include the unique problems that come with being refugees from a war zone targeted by Islamic extremists. But they also face more familiar barriers of unemployment, poverty, racism, school failure and the school to prison pipeline.
In 2010, the Coalition of Communities of Color and Portland State University released a report noting that more than half, 56 percent, of Multnomah County’s African immigrant and refugee children live in poverty.
According to Ann Curry Stevens, the Portland State researcher who authored the report, “That number has deteriorated and today two-thirds, 67 percent, of African children live in poverty.”
Read the whole story at The Skanner, it is very informative.