New Foreign Legion; Strangers in Uniform
A while back, I did a column about the problem of non-citizens in the US Army, [Abolishing America (contd.): Foreign Legions?] and the subject may arise again.
In a recent article, I read that more immigrants are joining the Army, according an interview with an a Ecuadorian-born US Army recruiter, Staff Sergeant Ena Gomez, who joined after seeing a "Be all that you can be" commercial in Spanish. ("Ser todo lo que puedes ser.")
Enlistees must be able to speak, read, and write English, and be legally in the United States.
Immigrants' desire to serve is not always apparent to those who don't rub shoulders with them, said Gomez, the Army recruiter from Ecuador. After the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, some immigrants told her that they wanted to defend the United States. Many were ineligible to serve because they were undocumented.
"They are people who have no papers," Gomez said.
[More immigrants filling the ranks of U.S. military By Diane Smith of Knight-Ridder.]
No, they are illegal immigrants, Sergeant Gomez.
If a history of committing criminal acts disbars someone from joining the Army, isn't he fact that a recruit is violating Federal law right now, by being illegally present in the United States, is a much greater bar?
Now, the desire of immigrants to fight for the US is actually a good thing. But, of course, the most likely source of immigrant recruits is the Estados Unidos de Mexico. What would that mean when the US finally conducts the next Operation Wetback?
Brenda Walker writes to say that
"Lewiston continues to bubble along in happy ignorance...."
See Lewiston public wants to hear from its mayor about tolerance, Portland Press-Herald- in which an editorial writer lectures Mayor Laurier Raymond for not withdrawing the letter he wrote to Somali leaders asking them not to stop coming until the town has had time to adapt.
VDARE.com will have a Brenda Walker column soon, explaining why it's a bad idea.
According to Daniel Pipes, the 56 regional offices of the FBI have started counting mosques in their area of operations, to get in touch with the size of their local terrorist problem. (Mosques are centers of political activity worldwide.)The FBI has denied any interest in Muslims as Muslims. The INS also seems to want to (a) track potential Muslim terrorists, and (b) deny that it's doing so.
The FBI has a very poor track record on Muslims. When one of its own agents declared that he couldn't in conscience investigate the terrorist activities of fellow Muslims, it not only failed to discipline him, it gave him an Embassy post - in Saudi Arabia. Maybe someone in the FBI actually reads James Taranto.
Or perhaps the FBI has been following the example of the White House, which, according to the Washington Times, [Conservatives clash on Muslim Bush aides February 7, 2003, By Ralph Z. Hallow ] has been employing Muslims who either are or are not radical enemies of America, that being the question under dispute.
Frank Gaffney of the Center for Security Policy mentioned in a speech at CPAC that members of the American Muslim Council, (http://www.amconline.org/, no relation to http://www.amconmag.com) had visited the White House, and that the AMC had credited Ali Tulbah, associate director of Cabinet Affairs, and White House Public Liaison with the Arab and Muslim communities with helping them gain "access."
The American Muslim Council is a highly suspect organization, (at one time their executive board boasted H. Rap Brown as its president). Its main lobbying concern is preventing the government from using "secret evidence" in immigration cases, which would be a valid civil rights issue, if immigration were a civil right, which it's not.
Grover Norquist, the Arabs' man in Washington, is going into full-on "Righteous Right" snit, the kind that brought down Trent Lott, and that we predicted would be catching.
Mr. Norquist accused [Frank Gaffney]of impugning the loyalty of Ali Tulbah, an American Muslim and an associate director of Cabinet affairs in the White House. "There is no place in the conservative movement for racial prejudice, religious bigotry or ethnic hatred," Mr. Norquist wrote. "This is the second time that a Muslim working for President George W. Bush has been subjected to an attack by you because of his faith."
Gaffney has replied in the Washington Times.
Now, I don't know if Tulbah supports radical Islam, terror, or foreign governments. I just want to know why the Bush White House has an Official Public Liaison with the Arab and Muslim communities.
According to the White House website there is an official Office of Public Liason, for the purpose of sucking up to pressure groups, or as they put it
promoting Presidential priorities through outreach to concerned constituencies and public interest groups. This includes planning White House briefings, meetings, and large events with the President, Vice President and other White House staff and coordinating national, state and local activities on behalf of Presidential initiatives.
In fact, if you have RealPlayer installed in your computer, you can see Ali Tulbah delivering a message from President Bush to the 39th annual conference of the Islamic Society of North America. [Click here for Broadband video, or here for dialup, Tulbah appears at minute 19:45]
Bush's message is the usual drivel. ("Laura joins me in sending her best wishes…Cultural diversity has always been a great strength of our country…Important traditions of your historic faith." Aargh.)
It's worthwhile distinguishing between the dangerous ideology of militant Islam, and the peaceful sort of Muslim who just wants to get on with (stereotypically) driving his taxicab. But the administration doesn't want to admit that there is a large segment of the Muslim "faith community" which sees the United States as an enemy.
Why does Bush have to do this kind of thing? And why can't the mainstream press jump on such gestures with something of the same fervor that they display at any hint of Methodism in the Administration.
Meanwhile, elsewhere in the White House
The Threat Level is at Orange, the Homeland Security people saying that
Recent reporting indicates an increased likelihood that Al Qaida may attempt to attack Americans in the United States and/or abroad in or around the end of the Hajj, a Muslim religious period ending mid-February 2003.
Ah, but have they factored in the threat to Homeland Security from Grover Norquist?
Joel Mowbray has a good column on what the State Department considers to be treason: putting the interests of the American people before those of the State Department. When Chief of Consular Affairs Maura Harty found that someone on her staff had leaked details of secret negotiations with Mexico, to give up to $345 billion dollars in benefits to former illegal aliens in Mexico, she "lashed out at CA staff members, declaring that the "leak" at State was a "traitor." In the meantime, the plan to give illegals social security benefits seems to be "going South."
The NYPD's motto is Fidelis Ad Mortem, "Faithful Unto Death," an unusually martial motto for a police department, and one they surely lived up to on 9/11. It earned this motto first in the 19th century, partly as result of the Draft Riots I wrote of in connection with Gangs of New York, but also partly as a result of the Orange Riots, in which Irish-hating Orangemen battled Orange-hating Irishmen.
I mention this only to note that we don't always highlight the failings of Irish Catholic immigrants, but are willing to note the violent proclivities of Irish Protestant immigrants as well.
I was trying to get away from immigration, terrorism , the national question, affirmative action, and punditology in general, and see what's doing in the world of card tricks. When I turned to bar magician Doc Eason's joke page (free jokes, and worth every penny), I came across this joke, which most of you have probably heard already:
You read about all these terrorists—most of them came here legally, but they hung around on these expired visas, some for as long as 10-15 years. Now, compare that to Blockbuster; you are two days late with a video and those people are all over you. Let's put Blockbuster in charge of immigration.
Of course, you can't rent from Blockbuster unless you have a Visa card. And it's a lot harder to get one of those than it is to get an actual entry visa from the State Department.