Did anyone else know about this additional outrageous consequence of the “war on terror”? You may have to be a subscriber to see this note from The Nation, September 20?

Deborah Amos’s Eclipse of the Sunnis: Power, Exile, and Upheaval in the Middle East (PublicAffairs; $25.95) is a harrowing account of the pain and anguish suffered by the Iraqi Sunni diaspora in the Middle East. Especially perverse is a legal hurdle faced by exiles seeking asylum in the United States. Amos reports that Iraqis who have “paid ransom for the release of a loved one who had been kidnapped by a militia or criminal gang” have been barred from relocating to the United States by the Patriot Act, which considers “the paying of ransom in such cases—regardless of the circumstances—as constituting ‘material support’ for terrorists.” Iraq’s exiles have been left stranded by their putative liberators between a decimated past and a future not yet born.

I searched around and found an item from May in the NY Review of Books noting that Congress granted the State Department and DHS the right to waive the “material support” limit when it involved payments “under duress.” However, the authors claim that 1000s of potential refugees and asylum-seekers continue to be denied entry into the US because of anti-terror laws.

Share