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Tag: Muslims

Trump, Justice Department Pledge to Fight Orders Stopping Travel Ban

Donald Trump, via Wikipedia

Donald Trump, via Wikipedia

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Justice Department and President Trump criticized two judges’ decisions Wednesday to halt the revised travel ban by ruling it is discriminatory against Muslims.

The Justice Department contends Trump’s executive order “falls squarely within his lawful authority in seeking to protect our nation’s security,” the Washington Post reports. 

It’s unclear what step the government will take next.

At a rally in Nashville on Wednesday, Trump lashed out at the court decisions, saying he would take the case to the Supreme Court. He event suggested returning to his original executive order, which was a more sweeping ban.

“Let me tell you something. I think we ought to go back to the first one and go all the way,” Trump said. “The danger is clear, the law is clear, the need for my executive order is clear.”

Federal judges in Maryland and Hawaii struck down the order on religious discrimination grounds, pointing to Trump’s statements during the campaign that he wanted to ban all Muslims from entering the U.S.

Border Agents Searched More Phones in February Than All of 2015

cell-phone-app-fbiBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Customs and Border Protection officers have demanded that American citizens turn over their phones and passwords in 25 cases examined by NBC News. 

The phones are being seized at the border and airports.

A New York couple said it happened to them twice while returning from a trip to Canada. Akram Shibly and his wife Kelly McCormick said Shibly was assaulted by officers to get their phone.

In February, 5,000 phones were searched, which is more than all of the phones searched in 2015. Homeland Security data show that Border Patrol agents searched nearly 25,000 phones in 2016, a five-fold increase over 2015.

NBC wrote:

The travelers came from across the nation, and were both naturalized citizens and people born and raised on American soil. They traveled by plane and by car at different times through different states. Businessmen, couples, senior citizens, and families with young kids, questioned, searched, and detained for hours when they tried to enter or leave the U.S. None were on terror watchlists. One had a speeding ticket. Some were asked about their religion and their ethnic origins, and had the validity of their U.S. citizenship questioned.

What most of them have in common — 23 of the 25 — is that they are Muslim, like Shibly, whose parents are from Syria.

ATF, FBI Investigate Suspicious Fire at Islamic Center in Michigan

police lightsBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI and ATF have joined an investigation into a fire that gutted the Islamic Center of Ypsilanti in Michigan.

No one was in the building, which also includes a mosque, when the fire broke out, ClickOnDetroit.com reports

“The FBI is currently working with the Pittsfield Township Department of Public Safety and the ATF to determine the cause of fire that occurred at the Islamic Community Center,” the FBI said in a statement. “If in the course of investigation, information is developed suggesting a hate crime or another federal crime, logical investigation will be conducted to identify the individual(s) responsible and authorities will coordinate with the United States Attorney’s Office to identify the best course of action towards prosecution.”

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) released a statement Sunday afternoon:

“We urge state and federal agencies to use their full resources to investigate this fire to determine a cause and, if it is determined to be arson, a possible motive,” said CAIR-MI Executive Director Dawud Walid. “Anyone who has information about this fire, or saw anything suspicious at the time of the blaze, should immediately contact law enforcement authorities.”

Authorities said the fire appears to be suspicious.

Muslims have been the targets of hate crimes at increasing rates since Donald Trump became president.

FBI Investigating Threats Against Muslims During NC Conservative Activists Meeting

cair-logoBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is investigating alleged death threats against Muslims during a meeting of conservative activists in North Carolina, the Associated Press reports. 

The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) requested a federal investigation after a speaker in Kernersville spoke about the Muslim Brotherhood.

Audio captured by alternative newspaper Triad City Beat revealed that someone at the meeting said, “Any recommendations on how we can stop this? Because my only recommendation is to start killing the hell out of them.”

The speaker suggested Muslims are trying to take over the U.S.

The FBI wrote in a press release: “The FBI is aware of news media stories about a recent meeting in North Carolina where comments were reportedly made against the Muslim community. We are working with our local law enforcement partners to determine if a federal violation involving threats of violence that is not speech protected under the First Amendment has occurred. The safety and security of our citizens is a priority for the FBI and we have been in contact with local community leaders to assure them we take potential threats of violence very seriously.”

DHS Secretary Says He Knew Trump’s Travel Ban ‘Was Coming’

Marine Gen. John Kelly

Marine Gen. John Kelly

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Homeland Security Security Secretary John Kelly denied reports on Tuesday that he was blind-sided by President Trump’s executive order that imposes a travel ban on seven predominately Muslim countries.

“We did know the executive order was coming,” Kelly said at a news conference, NBC News reports. “We had people involved in the general drafting of it. Clearly this whole approach was part of what then-candidate Trump talked about for a year or two. So we knew all this was coming.”

He added: “It wasn’t a surprise that it was coming.”

According to a senior administration official, Kelly was informed of the upcoming executive order before Trump’s inauguration and after his confirmation hearing.

Kelly also denied the immigration restrictions amounted to a “ban on Muslims.”

“Religious liberty is one of our most fundamental and treasured values,” he said. “This is a temporary pause that allows us to better review the existing refugee and visa vetting system.”

FBI Investigates Bomb Threats to Refugee Community Center for Muslims

police tapeBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is investigating threats to “blow up” a refugee community center that predominately serves Muslim immigrants.

Police said anonymous, threatening notes were found at the Denver-area center, Reuters reports.

The typewritten notes were left in the parking lot and stairwell of the Mango House. Both letters had the same message: WE’RE GONNA BLOW UP ALL OF YOU REFUGEES.”

The threats come as President Trump is banning people from traveling to the U.S. from seven predominately Muslim countries.

The refugee center in Aurora was evacuated, but no signs of suspicious devices were found.

“This is an ongoing investigation and is a top priority for us,” police spokesman Sergeant Chris Amsler said.  “We don’t tolerate that type of thing in the city of Aurora.”

Border Agents Defy Judges’ Orders on Trump’s Travel Ban

Protesters at Detroit Metro Airport rally against Trump’s executive order. Photo by Steve Neavling.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Customs and Border Patrol agents ignored the orders of federal judges who said Donald Trump’s travel bans are unenforceable, members of congress and civil rights attorneys said.

Muslims from the seven countries on the travel-ban list were still being detained Sunday, two days after three judges ordered a temporary halt to the deportation of people who had arrived with valid visas in the U.S., the Guardian reports. 

On Sunday, four Democratic members of the House of Representatives visited Dulles airport in Virginia after it was discovered that people had been detained and weren’t allowed to see lawyers.

“We have a constitutional crisis today,” representative Don Beyer wrote on Twitter. “Four members of Congress asked CBP officials to enforce a federal court order and were turned away.”

Representative Jamie Raskin also tweeted, “As far as I know no attorney has been allowed to see any arriving passenger subject to Trumps exec order at Dulles today.”

He added: “CBP appears to be saying people in their custody not ‘detained’ technically & Dulles international arrivals areas not in the United States.”

Homeland Security has declined to comment.

Protests were launched across the country to protest the ban on travel from the seven Muslim-majority countries.

Daily Iowan: Trump’s Travel Ban Is ‘Incredibly Callous And Inhumane’

airport-people-walkingBy Editorial Board
The Daily Iowan 

On Jan. 27, President Trump instituted, through an executive order, a temporary ban on immigration from seven predominantly Muslim countries: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.

Trump contends that the action is necessary to keep America safe from international terrorists who may impersonate refugees to gain entry to the United States. He also asserted the action is a part of an agenda to prioritize the movement of Christian refugees fleeing war-torn regions of the Middle East.

Perhaps Trump does not see the tragic irony in his decree; the United States has been involved with a relatively constant bombing campaign in Somalia, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, and Libya. Micah Zenko, a fellow in the Center for Preventive Action at the Council on Foreign Relations, said the U.S. has been responsible for dropping nearly 30,000 bombs (a very conservative estimate) in 2016 alone, with nearly 25,000 of these dropped in Syria and Iraq.

To first facilitate the conditions that necessitate the need to flee and then to write a specific rule that bars such people from entering the country is not just incredibly callous and inhumane, it is also incredibly stupid.

After multitudes of protests erupted outside and in international airports in which nationals of the targeted countries, despite having green cards and visas, were detained, a federal judge in Brooklyn managed to strike down part of Trump’s action.

The case, Darweesh v. Trump Order (which allows the movement of such detained individuals through American borders), came on the heels of a press release issued by the Department of Homeland Security that stated, “President Trump’s executive order remains in place — prohibited travel will remain prohibited, and the U.S. government retains its right to revoke visas at any time if required for national security or public safety. President Trump’s executive order affects a minor portion of international travelers and is a first step toward re-establishing control over America’s borders and national security.”

The façade of protecting national security through xenophobic attempts of bottle-necking immigration is just sensationalism.

To read more click here.