Iraq, Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia and Yemen.
These are the nations President Trump placed a temporary travel moratorium on. Of these nations, only Syria’s was indefinite. Why these nations and not Egypt, Saudi Arabia, UAE, or Pakistan? The US and these nation’s governments have strong relationships in both trade and in the war against Islamic fascism. More importantly, the US has extensive intelligence networks within them.
The fact that terrorists often come out of these nations demonstrates that even the most straight-forward vetting process is by no means perfect. The travel moratorium is designed to give the new administration time to review immigration procedures where major security gaps exist, in some of the most dangerous regions in the world.
What the targeted nations have in common is simple. It is not currently possible to properly vet anyone from these nations. The UN vetting process is meant as a preliminary system to filter refugees, it is not meant to be the final vetting process.
Each nation has a responsibility to vet refugees. The admission process is a series of interviews with the applicant, and a battery of glorified background checks. If no previously documented information exists, no background check in the world will filter out the good from the bad in a world where our enemy could be anybody. Other Visa processes are even less intensive.
Our enemy does not wear uniforms. They are individuals seeking an Islamic Caliphate. Until recently, the Caliphate was considered a conspiracy theory. In 2011, Huffington Post mockingly reported that “(a)fter being derided and charged with trafficking in wild conspiracy theories, Glenn Beck redoubled his warnings that the uprisings in Egypt could lead to an Islamic caliphate spreading across the Middle East.”
Popular narrative suggested the Arab Spring was a fight against oppression, and Occupy believed that the Arab Spring “is what democracy looks like.” It turned out looking much like the Muslim Brotherhood being elected in Egypt, and ISIL, famously called the “JV team” by Obama, holding vast swaths of Iraq and Syria.
The travel hiatus was imposed because, except for Iraq and Sudan, the US does not have embassies in these countries. The US embassy in Syria closed in 2012. The embassy in Libya closed in 2014. The US embassy in Yemen closed in 2015. The US embassy to Somalia has been closed since 1991. The US embassy in Tehran has been closed since 1979.
Europe declared themselves a sanctuary for Syrian refugees, creating a massive black market for Syrian passports, making these particularly suspect. Libya is in near anarchy because the Obama administration deposed their government. Libya is the major jumping off point for refugees.
Any mass movement of humans leads to other types of human trafficking. The website for the US Embassy to Libya states, “Libya is a destination and transit country for men and women … subjected to forced labor and forced prostitution,” the levels of which are unknown since the US does not have an embassy there. According the Obama administration, there is no Benghazi embassy because Muslims were offended by a video. There was no official US investigation on the ground after the Benghazi attack for three weeks, so any physical evidence of what occurred was a bit bleached by time and contamination. The remaining diplomatic staff was exfiltrated in 2014 due to continued violence.
Iraq unraveled when the US left, creating a security vacuum in our wake. The Democrats voted to invade Iraq, then implemented a near complete withdrawal of military personnel even though it was clear that this would result in the collapse of the nation and the entrenchment of militants. That vacuum was filled by ISIS and Iranian backed militias, among others, turning the nation into a battleground between Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds.
Yemen has essentially been in anarchy for several years now, and is one of Al-Qaeda’s favorite training grounds. Somalia has not had an effective government for over two decades. Iran is the largest exporter of terror in the world. The only real outlier is Sudan, which has recently pulled back on its genocide. Sudan and the US have had a patchy relationship for many decades now, and they continue to support Iranian backed terror organizations, particularly Hamas. Sudan, Syria, and Iran are the three nations currently designated by the US as state sponsors of terror.
Movement from these nations was restricted because we do not have sufficient intelligence networks in them. Without the resources of an embassy and its intelligence operatives, there can be no positive vetting process.
The suggestion made by the left that a sufficient vetting process exists is entirely false. Not only is it unwise to issue new visas to any individuals traveling from these nations, all visas from these nations are suspect.