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  1. Jewish Refugees Were Excluded from US as "Bolsheviks" and "Radicals" in the 1930's. Syrians, DEJA VU? Roger Algase

    The following comment has been revised and expanded as of October 22, 11:24 am:

    In the light of concerns expressed by a number of lawmakers, officials and commentators over the possibility that Syrian refugees seeking admission to the US might be infiltrated to or sympathetic to ISIS terrorists, concerns which one of America's most respected federal appeals court judges, Richard Posner has quite recently dismissed as "nightmare speculation" (see Exodus Immigration v Pence, 7th Circuit, October 3, 2016), it is instructive to examine some of the objections which were made to the admission of Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany in the 1930's - objections which, in many cases, tragically, led to thousands of refugees who had been denied entry to America dying in Nazi concentration camps.

    One of the best known of these victims was Anne Frank, the author of the famous diary which stands as a worldwide symbol of resistance to every form of persecution and repression. As recently related in an article about Anne Frank's step sister, Eva Schloss, who survived the Holocaust and is still alive today, their father. Otto Frank, made vigorous and extensive efforts to obtain a US visa for himself and his family, only to be turned down, along with many thousands of other Jewish refugees, some of whom, as Eva Schloss suggests about Anne Frank herself, might otherwise still be alive today.

    Why were so many Jewish refugees from Hitler denied visas to the United States, or, like the doomed passengers on the famous ship St. Louis, sent back to Hitler's gas chambers and death camps?

    One of the reasons was the unfounded, but widely suspected possibility of subversion. Case Western Reserve University Historian Peter Shulman describes this as follows in his FORTUNE November, 2015, article:

    How America's Response to Syrian and Jewish Refugees is Eerily Similar

    "Behind these numbers lay a toxic fear of Jewish subversion. For decades, Jews had been linked to various strains of un-American threats: socialism, communism, and anarchism, of course, but also, paradoxically, a kind of hyper-capitalism. Many believed that the real threat to the United States lay not from abroad, but within. During Franklin Roosevelt's administration, Jews held so many influential positions that New Deal opponents spoke of the 'Jew Deal'."

    An exhaustive, detailed scholarly study of the mechanics of America's visa refusal and the forces behind the policy reasons that led to the denial of refuge in America to so many of Hitler's Jewish victims was published in CUNY Academic Works in 2011 by Barbara L. Bailin. See:

    The Influence of Anti-Semitism on United States Immigration Policy With respect to German Jews During 1933-1939

    I strongly recommend this outstanding research paper to any reader who has a serious interest in the subject of American immigration policy toward Jewish refugees in the period leading up to the Holocaust Nazi extermination, and who is not adverse to examining whether there is a comparison between that period and the situation facing Syrian refugees seeking to enter the United States today, as some highly qualified and reputable authorities are suggesting there is. See: New York Times:

    Comparing Jewish Refugees of the 1930's With Syrians Today


    Anne Frank Today Is a Syrian Girl

    My next post will discuss the section of Ms. Bailin's study dealing with the widespread claim, which many Americans and their representatives evidently believed, that:

    "German-Jewish Immigrants Were 'Infected With' Bolshevism and Held Radical Political Beliefs"

    As will be shown in my next, forthcoming, comment, Bailin's article, among its many other unique and valuable insights into this topic, also describes in detail the approximately two dozen questions that Jewish refugees had to answer on their US visa applications. It also describes the difficulties of obtaining required affidavits of support in order to overcome the ultra-restrictive interpretation of the Public Charge provision of the law that US officials who were ideologically opposed to Jewish immigration, and in some cases, overtly anti-semitic, used in order to deny the great majority of Jewish refugee visa applications.

    Her impressive study also describes documents which the refugees were often required to obtain from their Nazi persecutors in order to file their usually unsuccessful US visa applications.

    But, some people might ask, what does any of this have to do with Syrian refugees today? Nicholas Kristoff, himself the child of a WW2 refugee, answers as follows in the second of the two New York Times articles cited above, the one dealing specifically with Anne Frank. He writes:

    "Some readers are objecting: But Jews weren't a threat the way Syrian refugees are!
    (Original italics) In the 1930's and '40's, though, a world war was underway and Jews were widely seen as potential Communists or even Nazis. There were widespread fears that Germany would infiltrate the US with spies and saboteurs under the cover that they were Jewish refugees.

    ''When the safety of the country is imperiled, it seems fully justifiable to resolve any possible doubts in favor of the country, rather than in favor of the aliens,' the State Department instructed in 1941. The New York Times in 1938 quoted the granddaughter of President Ulysses S. Grant warning about 'so-called Jewish refugees and hinting that they were Communists 'coming to our country to join the ranks of those who hate our institutions and want to overthrow them.'...

    The Times published a front page article about the risks of Jews becoming Nazi spies, and the Washington Post published an editorial thanking the State Department for keeping out Nazis posing as refugees...

    A State Department official, Breckenridge Long, systematically tightened rules on Jewish refugees. In this climate, Otto Frank was unable to get visas for his family members, who were victims in part of American paranoia, demagogy and indifference."

    Is there really such a difference between American attitudes toward Jewish refugees then and Syrian refugees now, especially since there have been few, if any, major crimes by the hundreds of thousands of refugees America has taken in for the past 40 years? See:

    Many of the arguments we are hearing today against admitting Syrian refugees are, in the above words of historian Peter Shulman, "eerily similar" to those used in the 1930's against admitting Jewish ones.

    Yes, the Syrian government has been on America's list of state sponsors of terrorism for many years, since long before there was such a thing as ISIS, which the current government is not connected with and which is fighting against that government.

    Does this mean that Syrian refugees who are fleeing from the current brutal, Russian-backed Syrian government and/or its enemy, ISIS, are likely to be "definitely ISIS-aligned" as one of the two candidates warned at the October 19 presidential debate?

    Was Nazi Germany a "state sponsor" of peace and harmony among nations in the 1930's and 1940's?

    We also hear arguments, such as those coming from Republican members of the House Committee on Homeland Security, that our screening process for Syrian refugees is ineffective, because we allegedly cannot obtain information about them from inside Syria itself.

    Even if this were true, despite that fact that military dictatorships often have very extensive records about their citizens, just as the Gestapo was never short of information about the Jews; and American officials must surely have access to Syrian government databases (if not, there are no doubt plenty of alleged Russian DNC hackers we should be able to hire to do that job for us), does this mean that our intensive process of personal interviews and biometric screening taking up to two years is worthless, that it produces no reliable information about the refugees (most of whom are women and children) at all?

    The idea that the Syrian war criminals who have been bombing Aleppo into extinction (as the Nazis tried to do with Leningrad) and who have been accused of using chemical weapons and barrel bombs against their own people do not keep records or databases on their citizens would be laughable if the actions of the murderers and torturers in that government were not so horrible.

    The US State Department says the following about the Syrian government's ability to obtain information and keep records about individuals in that country:

    "Security personnel frequently place foreign visitors under surveillance. Hotel rooms, internet connections, and fax machines may be monitored. Taking photographs of anything that could be perceived as being of military or security interest may result in questioning, detention or confiscation of the images. Additionally, U.S. citizens should be aware that conversations on the topics of politics, religion and other social issues could lead to arrest."

    Is information about refugees from inside Syria really entirely unavailable? True, Syrian government officials may not be all that cooperative about sharing their information with US government refugee screening agencies, so we might have to rely on Wikileaks instead.

    But how cooperative would the Gestapo have been about sharing their information about Jewish refugees with US authorities in the 1930's, if America had been willing to accept them?

    Are the above and other similar arguments for refusing to accept Syrian refugees anything more than the "nightmare speculation" that Judge Posner refers to above?

    To the contrary, these arguments show signs of being a replay of the xenophobia and paranoia of the 1930's that denied refuge to many thousands, if not hundreds of thousands, of Jews seeking refuge from Hitler's concentration and death camps, just as Anne Frank's family tried to do, only with Islamophobia instead of anti-semitism as the main motivating force today.

    When it comes to attitudes toward Syrian refugees, there is good reason to believe that what we are seeing is DEJA VU from the 1930's all over again.
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 35 years, he has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants obtain work visas and green cards.

    Roger's practice is focused on work authorization through specialty occupation (H-1B) or extraordinary ability (O-1) employment; and on J-1 trainee visas as well as green cards through Labor Certification (PERM) and opposite sex or same sex marriage. His email address is

    Updated 10-22-2016 at 04:46 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  2. "Nightmare Speculation" barred Jewish Refugees in 1930's. Is it keeping Syrian refugees out now? Part 2. Roger Algase

    This is the second installment of my comments examining the comparison between America's refusal to date to accept more than a tiny number (10,000) of the millions of Syrian refugees who have fled the war criminals and torturers in the Russian-backed Assad dictatorship, and the ISIS jihadist murderers, both of which are racking their country with war, persecution and terror against that country's population on the one hand, and America's refusal to admit more than a small number of Jewish refugees from Hitler in the 1930's.

    Admittedly there are those who object to making such a comparison, or even find it offensive. Legal scholar, immigration law expert and former Congressional immigration staffer Nolan Rappaport, for example, writes the following, in response to Part 1 of my comments in the October 17 issue of Immigration Daily:

    "Hitler was trying to exterminate the entire Jewish race, and he succeeded in murdering 8 million of them. How is that similar in any way to the plight of the Syrian refugees?"

    A simple and obvious answer would be the one given by Eva Schloss, the step-sister of Anne Frank, who was recently quoted in the Huffington Post (a publication that Mr. Rappaport also happens to be a contributor to - though that does not imply he agrees with their views) as follows:

    "The fact is that six million people were not able to find refuge and were murdered....And that is what is happening to these people [Syrian refugees today]. They have to leave because their lives were threatened"


    Mr. Rappaport undoubtedly knows a great deal about the Holocaust, and his views on this topic should be taken seriously and with great respect. But is he in a position to know as much about the Holocaust as someone who actually lived through it, such as Anne Frank's own step-sister?

    Huffington Post describes the vain attempt of Anne Frank's and Eva Schloss' common father, Otto Frank (whom Eva Schloss' mother married after the war, when Otto Frank had returned from the Nazi concentration camps in which Anne Frank had died) to gain refuge for his family in the United States:

    "Otto Frank, Anne's father and Eva's step father, spent months filling out the colossal amount of paperwork necessary to be granted asylum in America. He required affidavits of support from family already stateside. He wrote friends in positions of power. In the end, fueled by fears of "Nazi spies" being among the refugees. a fear very similar to today's claims of ISIS infiltrators among Syrian refugees, the US would deny his and thousands of others."

    Huffington Post, in the same article, also asked Eva Schloss:

    "Would your step sister Anne Frank be alive today if the US hadn't denied sanctuary?"

    Schloss' answer was;

    "Of course!...No doubt about it!

    Eva Schloss, of course, is not the only Jewish person who is concerned about the Holocaust and who believes that it is not "offensive" to make comparisons to between Jewish refugees seeking entry to the US in the 1930's and Syrian refugees trying to do the same today. A June 25, 2015 article in the Forward, one of America's oldest and most respected Jewish newspapers, states:

    "For Jewish activists pushing the government to shift gears [by admitting more Syrian refugees], that feeble number [less than 1,000 as of the date of the article] and the accompanying bottleneck in resettlement of Syrian refugees are troubling reminders of their community's own experience during World War II."



    Mr. Rappaport also points to the fact that Syria has been on America's list of state sponsors of terror for almost forty years, since 1979 (even though Hezbollah, which Syria's support for was one of the main reasons for putting Syria on the list in the first place, is no longer on the US list of terrorist organizations itself.}

    But even if Syria was a state sponsor of terrorism then, or even if Syria is still so now (since ISIS, of course, was not in existence forty years ago and it it is NOT a state organization or an organization supported by the current Syrian regime, as far as anyne knows), how does this distinguish the situation of Syrian refugees today from that of Jewish refugees seeking entry to America in the 1930's?

    Was Nazi Germany a sponsor of world peace and cooperation among nations then?

    In Part 3 of this series, I will examine the common elements of popular prejudice against Jews in general and Jewish refugees in particular, fueled in part by one of America's wealthiest and best known business tycoons, Henry Ford; and the prejudice against Muslims in general, and Syrian refugees in particular, which is being promoted by another well known wealthy businessman today, among others.

    I will also show how these popular attitudes have led, then and now, to legal restrictions against refugee admissions affecting both groups, as explained by Holocaust scholar Peter A. Shulman of Case Western Reserve University, writing in FORTUNE.


    How America's Response to Syrian and Jewish Refugees is Eerily Similar

    To be continued in Part 3.

    Roger Algase
    Attorney at Law

    Updated 10-19-2016 at 01:56 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  3. Schumer is wrong; if Hillary Clinton is elected, immigration reform will be impossible. by Nolan Rappaport


    In an interview with CNBC’s John Harwood, Senator Charles Schumer said that his Schumer-McCain immigration reform bill passed the Senate by a vote of 68-32. According to Schumer, in the next congress, the mainstream conservatives in the Senate and House, who are a majority, will say to the 50 congressmen on the hard right who seem to tie things in a knot, to go take a hike. Schumer, Clinton, and Ryan have all said that they will support immigration reform and some kind of international tax reform if it is tied to a large infrastructure program.

    The Senate has passed two major immigration reform bills, but both were opposed by a majority of the Senate Republicans. On May 25, 2006, the Senate passed the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2006, S. 2611, with a vote of 62 yeas and 36 nays. Only 23 Republican senators voted for it; the other 32 Republicans and four Democrats voted against it. On June 27, 2013, the Senate passed the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act of 2013, S. 744, with 68 yeas and 32 nays. This time, only 14 of the Republicans voted for it; the other 32 voted against it. As could have been expected, both bills were dead on arrival when they reached the Republican-controlled House of Representatives.

    I am only aware of one successful immigration reform bill that had such one-sided political support, the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (IIRIRA), which was an extremely harsh Republican bill. Ironically, IIRIRA was signed into law as part of a larger bill by Hillary’s husband, Bill. Bill’s formalstatement at the signing ceremony explicitly acknowledged that he was in favor of strengthening the rule of law by cracking down on illegal immigration. The pertinent part of his statement reads as follows:

    This bill, ... includes landmark immigration reform legislation that builds on our progress of the last three years. It strengthens the rule of law by cracking down on illegal immigration at the border, in the workplace, and in the criminal justice system—without punishing those living in the United States legally.

    The obstacle to comprehensive immigration reform today is that the Democrats and the Republicans have very different attitudes towards legalization. The Democrats believe that the 11 or so million undocumented aliens in the United States should have lawful status because they deserve it and it is the right thing to do. The Republicans, however, believe that the undocumented aliens are in the United States in violation of our laws and should be deported.

    But there is a way around that deadlock, the wipe-the-slate-clean deal that was the basis for the passage of the last comprehensive immigration reform bill thirty years ago, the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA). Faced with the realization that the 2.7 million undocumented aliens in the United States at that time were never going to be deported, which is just as true about the 11 million undocumented aliens we have now, the Republicans agreed to legalize the undocumented aliens who were already in the United States in return for an enforcement program and a secure border that would prevent a new group of undocumented aliens from taking their place. The Democrats got their legalization program but the promised enforcement program was never implemented and the border was never secured. By the beginning of 1997, the 2.7 million legalized aliens had been replaced entirely by a new group of undocumented aliens.

    I believe that the Republicans would agree to the same deal now if they were assured that this time, they would get border security and interior enforcement before a legalization program is implemented. The problem is that the Republicans would never trust Hillary Clinton to implement interior enforcement and without interior enforcement, border security is impossible. Knowledge that an undocumented alien will not be deported once he has reached the interior of the country is a powerful magnet that will draw undocumented aliens here from all over the world. This would be particularly true of aliens who can come here under the Visa Waiver Program.

    At a Democratic Presidential Debate on March 9, 2016, Hillary Clinton said that if she is elected, she would not deport any undocumented alien children and she would only deport undocumented adult aliens who have criminal records. As president, she would enforce the immigration laws humanely by focusing resources on detaining and deporting immigrants who pose a violent threat to public safety. And she is still making these promises.

    Ironically, immigration reform would be possible if Donald Trump is elected. If he tries to carry out his promise to deport the 11 million undocumented aliens, which already has been whittled down to deporting the criminals “and then we’ll see,” he will come to the same realization that previous Republican leaders have faced. It can’t be done. The Donald, however, is a proud man and he sees himself as a great deal maker. I would expect him to view bringing the two parties together on a comprehensive immigration reform bill as a great challenge. Being an experienced businessman, as opposed to being a politician, I would expect him to look for a compromise that would meet the essential needs of both parties instead of trying to achieve an outcome that would advance the agenda of his party. And he could be counted on to implement enforcement provisions and secure the border. My prediction is that the outcome would be a second Immigration Reform and Control Act, IRCA of 2017.

    Published originally in Huffington Post

    About the Author
    Nolan Rappaport was detailed to the House Judiciary Committee as an Executive Branch Immigration Law Expert for three years; he subsequently served as the immigration counsel for the Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security, and Claims for four years. Prior to working on the Judiciary Committee, he wrote decisions for the Board of Immigration Appeals for twenty years. He also has been a policy advisor for the DHS Office of Information Sharing and Collaboration under a contract with TKC Communications, and he has been in private practice as an immigration lawyer at Steptoe & Johnson.

    Updated 10-19-2016 at 04:55 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  4. "Nightmare Speculation" barred Jewish refugees in 1930's, Is It keeping Syrian refugees out now? Part 1. Roger Algase.

    Update, October 20, 12.02 am:

    In his October 15 blog comment:

    What do we know about Syrian refugees?

    Nolan Rappaport argues, in effect, that we do not know very much, because, in his view, the screening process, which can take up to two years, is somehow defective because of alleged lack of hard information from within Syria (surprise, surprise, who knew?)

    In my comment below, I contend that the fact that screening information may be imperfect or incomplete is not a good reason for assuming that Syrian refugees may be terrorists, any more than fears that Jewish refugees from Hitler might turn out to be "Nazi spies" was a good reason for refusing them admission to the US in the 1930's.

    Both are prime examples of what Judge Richard Posner of the US 7th Circuit Court of Appeals aptly called "nightmare speculation" in a case involving Syrian refugees decided only about two weeks ago, on October 3 (see below).

    But there is one person who has taken it on himself to inform us that, as far as he is concerned, the idea that there is something we don't know about Syrian refugees is bunk and that he knows everything that we need to know:

    Here is what Donald Trump had to say at the third and final presidential debate on October 19:

    "She [Hillary Clinton] is taking in tens of thousands of Syrian refugees who probably, in many cases, who are definitely, in many cases, ISIS aligned, and now we have them in our country, and wait until you see - a great Trojan horse."

    If Nolan's argument that we don't know very much about Syrian refugees because of alleged lack of complete information is correct, than Trump has to be lying (and not exactly for the first time in this campaign where immigration is concerned).

    Perhaps Nolan might wish to explain to Donald Trump that we don't have information about Syrian refugees so may be Trump should stop spewing out falsehoods about their allagdly being "definitely...ISIS aligned."

    The following post has been revised as of October 17 at 8:47 am:

    "The Governor of Indiana believes, though without evidence, that some of these persons [Syrian refugees seeking to be resettled in the US] were sent to Syria by ISIS to engage in terrorism and now wish to infiltrate the US to commit terrorist acts. No evidence of this belief has been presented, however; it is nightmare speculation."

    The above quote is from the decision of US 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Richard Posner, writing for the unanimous three judge panel upholding a lower court's granting of the plaintiff's request for a preliminary injunction against the attempt of Governor and Republican VP candidate Mike Pence to stop lawfully admitted Syrian refugees from being resettled in Indiana in Exodus Immigration v. Pence, October 3, 2016).

    Judge Posner's phrase "nightmare speculation also comes to mind in reading the October 13 Immigration Daily blog by Nolan Rappaport, a highly respected immigration law expert and former Congressional staff member specializing in immigration entitled: What do we know about Syrian refugees?

    The gist of the above comment appears to be that, because of presumed inability to obtain background information about Syrian refugees from inside Syria itself, the current US screening process for these refugees outside Syria, which is now normally taking up to two years, is virtually useless.

    But how often is reliable or complete information about refugees available from the country of alleged persecution itself?

    Suppose that the Russian-backed war criminals in Assad's brutal Syrian dictatorship who are now bombing hospitals in Aleppo and allegedly using chemical weapons against their own people were willing to share their databases with US officials about any given refugee claimant. How much would we learn?

    In the same way, if the ISIS jihadists who control large parts of Syria were willing to take enough time off from beheading their victims, drowning them or burning them alive, in order to share their information about individual refugee claimants with US security officials, would this information be of any value?

    Background information about individual refugees can be, and often has to be obtained in other ways, such as through the extensive interviews and numerous other security checks described by USCIS Director Leon Rodriguez in his written testimony about Syrian refugee screening before the House Committee on Homeland Security dated February 3, 2016. See:

    The above argument against taking in Syrian refugees is also contradicted by the fact that the United States has, on various occasions, taken in refugees from other parts of the world that were considered dangerous or threatening to our interests with, arguably,considrably less screening than Syrian refugees must undergo now, and where information from inside the country of origin was also scanty or unavailable.

    In the late 1970's and early 1980's, hundreds of thousands of Vietnamese "boat people" were admitted to the US despite the fact that perfect screening to make sure that they were not sympathetic to communist North Vietnam, which had just defeated America in a war in which 50,000 of our soldiers died, was virtually impossible.

    In the words of one reporter speaking many years afterward, in a presentation dealing with the history of Camp Pendleton in Kansas, where many of these refugees were housed before being permanently resettled in the United States:

    "i'm wondering, you know, when we were speaking with the former commander and air boss...they told us that there were security concerns in the airlift because they just really didn't know whether or not the Vietnamese people who were part of the airlift were all sort of sympathetic to the United States. They thought that perhaps, you know, now was the time that somebody was going to turn and support the North Vietnamese."

    But these concerns did not stop America from taking in more than 700,000 Vietnamese refugees, who became the foundation of one of this country's most successful immigrant groups.

    The above, naturally, gives rise to the question why America was able to accept hundreds of thousands of Vietnamese refugees with in all likelihood far less intensive security screening only 30-40 years ago than Syrian refugees are required to undergo today.

    Or as Mother Jones asked slightly over a year ago, before the bombing of hospitals in Aleppo and numerous other atrocities which have been carried out since then by the brutal Russian-backed Assad dictatorship and the inhuman ISIS terrorists, in an article dated (whether or not by coincidence) September 11, 2015:

    America Once Accepted 800,000 War Refugees. Is it Time to Do That Again?

    The only realistic way to answer that question is to recognize that important as security concerns are in the admission of refugees, as Mr. Rappaport rightly points out, they are, unfortunately, not the only factors involved in this kind of decision making.

    Just as growing Islamophobia, which is making Muslim US citizens and lawful residents feel lees safe than ever before, as I have discussed in a blog comment that is also due to appear in today's (October 17) issue of Immigration Daily, is a major factor in the opposition to Syrian refugees today, anti-semitism was the main, if not the only real reason, for turning away Jewish refugees from our shores 80 years ago.

    Their history, and the similarities with the situation affecting Syrian refugees today, will be discussed in Part 2 of this series.

    One of the arguments that was used for keeping Jewish refugees from Hitler out of America in the 1930's was the unfounded suspicion that they might turn out to be "slave spies", i;e; forced by the Nazis into committing espionage after arrival in the US.

    Similarly, the fact ,also mentioned in Mr. Rappaport's above comment, that a previous Syrian government was put on the US State Department's terrorism sponsor list in 1979, almost 40 years ago (for supporting Hezbollah, which was removed from America's terrorist organization watch list last year), cannot be taken by itself as a reason for assuming that Syrian refugees might be sympathetic to terrorism today..

    Is this anythng more than the kind of nightmare speculation that Judge Posner condemns above?


    To be continued in Part 2.
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 35 years, he has been helping mainly skilled immigrants from diverse parts of the world obtain work visas and green cards.

    Roger's practice is concentrated in H-1B specialty worker and O-1 extraordinary ability work authorization, J-1 trainee visas and green cards through labor certification and through opposite sex or same sex marriage. His email address is

    Updated 11-11-2016 at 02:09 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

  5. What steps are being taken to combat Islamophobia and hate crimes against Muslims in America? Roger Algase

    This post has been revised as of October 21, 9:00 pm:

    Fears of Syrian refugees as
    "potential terrorists" (which highly respected federal 7th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Richard Posner recently dismissed as "nightmare speculation" in the October 3, 2016 decision of Exodus Immigration v Pence) are continuing to increase, along with Islamophobia in general in America, despite the total lack of evidence that Syrian refugees have been involved in any US (or Canadian) terror incidents to date.

    At the same time, hate crimes against Muslims are on the increase.


    According to a New York Times story, there were an estimated 260 reports of hate crimes against Muslims in America in 2015, the highest since the year of the 9/11 attacks in 2001.

    This has led innocent Muslim-Americans and Muslim immigrants, including a Pakistani-American anti-terrorism expert who has actually decided to leave the US to seek refuge in Pakistan to fear for their own safety in America.

    According to media reports, Abdul Usmani, the 7-year old US-born child of Zeeshan-ul-Hassan Usmani, who originally came to the US from Pakistan as a Fullbright scholar and now works as a Chief Technology Officer for a Silicon Valley Software company, and who has been using data to prevent terror attacks, was allegedly beaten up by classmates on a school bus in North Carolina for being a Muslim.

    Usmani also alleges that his family was harassed by a neighbor for months because of their religion, and that his other son has been called a terrorist.

    He states that his family will stay in Pakistan until after the election to see if his family feels safe enough to return. See:


    And in a separate, and even more ominous development, three American men who are allegedly members of a militia group called "The Crusaders" have been arrested for allegedly plotting to bomb an apartment building and mosque used by Somali immigrants in Garden City, Kansas, after an 8-month FBI investigation.

    According to a BBC news report, the bombing was to take place on November 9, the day after the election. The report quotes US Attorney Tom Beall as saying that the investigation had taken FBI agents "deep into a culture of hatred and violence".


    The same report states that the Council on American-Islamic relations (CAIR) has urged increased protection of American mosques by law enforcement, and that its national executive director, Nihad Awad, has asked America's political leaders to:

    "...reject the growing Islamophobia in our nation."

    To be continued.
    Roger Algase is a New York immigration lawyer and a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School. For more than 35 years, he has been helping mainly skilled and professional immigrants from diverse parts of the world and ethnic/religious backgrounds obtain work visas and green cards.

    Roger's practice is concentrated in H-1B specialty worker, O-1 extraordinary ability and J-1 trainee work authorization; and green cards through labor certification (PERM) and opposite sex or same sex marriage. His email address is

    Updated 10-21-2016 at 08:02 PM by ImmigrationLawBlogs

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