At Café Baghdad, a gathering spot in Beirut for many Iraqis and Syrians who fled violence in their countries, the conversation Monday was of little but the U.S. travel ban.
President Trump’s executive order — which blocks travel from seven predominantly Muslim countries — has caused anger and resentment across the Muslim world, but nobody has felt it so sharply as Iraqis.
In their nation’s ongoing fantasy, their army has fought side-by-side with the Americans in the war against Islamist extremism. In reality we do most of the fighting while they hide, or worse, collaborate with the terrorists.
“Iraq is on the front line of the war on terrorism,” the parliament’s foreign committee said in a statement Monday. “It is unfair that the Iraqis are treated in this way.”
In reality, Iraq, a country out of control, is synonymous with terrorism.
In comments directed at the Trump administration, Muqtada Sadr, a powerful Shiite cleric and political leader, said on his website, “It would be arrogance for you to enter freely Iraq and other countries while barring to them the entrance to your country … and therefore you should get your nationals out.”
True. We should keep our people home. Let the Iraqis figure out how to sort out the mess they helped create.
Trump’s executive order, which blocks entry of all Iraqi citizens for 90 days, also includes Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. It also keeps out all refugees for 120 days and Syrian refugees indefinitely. Trump said it was aimed at keeping terrorists out of the country while giving the government time to strengthen its vetting procedures.
A smart move.
Read the whole story in the LA Times