Chaldeans Facing Deportation: The Inhumanity of Trump’s Policy

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I have tried to stay out of this new world of politics because it is no longer productive to have discussions with either Democrats or Republicans. It makes even less sense to try and figure out what is going on in the White House, let alone in the mind of our President. After reading this article, as a Chaldean American, I have to share my opinion.

Over the weekend, ICE arrested dozens of undocumented Chaldeans (Catholic Iraqis) in metro Detroit. Per the follow-up article, many of them had criminal backgrounds. Now they face deportation to Iraq. “As a result of recent negotiations between the U.S. and Iraq, Iraq has recently agreed to accept a number of Iraqi nationals subject to orders of removal,” said Khaalid Walls, a spokesman for the Michigan office of ICE (Immigration Customs and Enforcement).

The article goes on to say, “There are Chaldeans living in metro Detroit with unclear immigration statuses who came to U.S. decades ago. Some committed crimes when younger and have served time.  Now, under President Donald Trump, the U.S. is cracking down and deporting them.”

Besides the obvious, this is a huge deal because the United States is deporting Catholics to a region where religious intolerance leads to death. Under ISIS, those who are not Muslim face three options: 1) Convert. 2) Pay a fine. 3) Die by the sword. The world has seen over and over how this plays out.

It is true that many broke the law by coming to this country illegally, but many did so to flee the dictatorship of Saddam Hussein. It is true that some have committed crimes while they were here, but some have served their time. It is also true that some have committed violent crimes, but what does it say about our country if our solution is to deport them to hell on earth? These actions show America at its worst.

Like many actions of President Trump, the impulsive decision to round up and deport undocumented people will have repercussions that have not been contemplated. This tragedy is happening right in front of us and sadly the only thing I have done is write a blog post in protest.

Christmas with the Chaldeans

 

77 COMMENTS

  1. Tell me another country where illegal immigrants can stay without subject to deportation?. There is a reason why there is a law.

        • You know everything? If you have problem with this country, you are free to leave just as you left Iraq. Find another country that has no laws.

        • Oh and I’m a lawyer here, so I’m 100% confident that I know more about the law than you do.

        • Does not matter whether you know are a lawyer or born here. Your action speaks for yourself. You are a fool and there is no point in talking to fools.

        • Yet you keep on talking to me. But I will take your advice and stop talking to you. Thank you, come again

        • Does not matter whether you know the law or are a lawyer or born here. Your action speaks for yourself. You are a fool and there is no point in talking to fools.

  2. Do you have any viable solutions? I don’t, so it’s certainly not an accusation, but maybe something could be figured out. I’m not especially optimistic, though.

    • The solution would be to allow them to stay here on a temporary status until the resolution of the security situation in Iraq, but they should never be given US citizenship. Exception to the law can be made and has been made in the past. The ones who did not serve time for their crimes, should pay their debt to society unless statute of limitations has expired.

      Most Iraqi Christians have supported the West in the past century to their own detriment. The West (mainly US and Britain) has abandoned them on many occasions from Seyfo and Simele, to the recent service they provided to the coalition as translators, cooks, and domestics. Only to be abandoned and left to the mercy of the radicals.

      Trump’s orders to punish Muslims for just being Muslims have enabled the deportation-zealots at ICE who are enforcing the orders on all. Cuban refugees caused a havoc in Florida back in the 1980s during the cocaine wars which caused hundreds of murders. How many Cubans were deported back to Fidel?

  3. Stopping what’s being done isn’t a solution, that would be maintaining the status quo. Respectfully, wouldn’t the extension of special treatment to Cristian Arabs add fuel to the raging inferno of those claiming this is a Muslim ban?

    • There’s a difference between someone being arrested then deported and ICE proactively going after people to deport them. Sending anyone back to Iraq regardless of religion is not the answer. Here, the government is trying to pretend that this is not a Muslim ban by rounding up Christians too. To what end? Is metro Detroit going to be safer now? Is the government going to make connections with the local Arab community? Nothing is gained from this stupid show of force.

      • Im pretty sure they clearly stated before being elected they were gonna remove ppl who were here illegally. Whether jesus lovers, muslims, mexicans or albanian. Makes no difference. If youve violated the laws, you gotta go

        • They certainly did. If you say you’re going to do something, you have to do it. Who cares about being short-sighted or moral principles? Stand by your word, something this administration clearly does all the time, sure.

        • You know, for a lawyer. You come across as quite dense. Because you dont like the law and its now being enforced you feel justified to do what? Ignore it? Break it? Makes no sense

      • I respect anyone’s right to have an opinion and admire your willingness to allow views contrary to yours. You lost me however, with your assertion that this was done to “pretend this is not a Muslim ban.” 120 million Christian Mexicans beg to differ.

        • Sorry, I was not clear. I meant in the context of metro Detroit which has the highest Arab population in the country. ICE cannot not openly target a religion.

      • I am not sure this is a “show of force to deny it as a muslim ban”. again, this is taking a fundamental assumption that there is religious preference in general, when it comes to immigrants, and perpetuates that it should be there. by definition, the US is supposed to be secular, as are all its laws. Yes, so you could assert, Trump got caught trying to make a muslim ban, so to defend it, he’s like no. I am saying, I don’t think he ever cared about Christian immigrants. what to you, or any suggests otherwise? no offense to you or Chaldeans, but honestly why would he? he’s a selfish dude, he got votes – and if the estimate of 120,000 chaldeans being the total population is true – well its not much. He used the word muslim, to get people riled up, because that is something tangible and perceivable. he couldn’t get away with saying “immigrants” – because that is more cruel, too many either know immigrants or are immigrants. as I see it, I don’t think he was ever genuinely looking to preserve Iraqi Christians — what is Christianity to him? Mexicans are Christians too. sure, it is different, with persecution in Iraq vs mexico, but he’s a lose cannon, you can’t count on his to have a heart, unless it benefits him. the sad truth is, his supporters will see Chaldean skin or hear the language, and think Muslim. they can’t tell even Jain Indians apart, so of course – and that’s millions of votes right there. as for your comment – “sending anyone regardless of religion is not the answer” — nor is sending anyone on the basis of religion an answer either, and that is something important when making arguments like this. White Christians have performed more terror attacks and caused more death in recent years, then muslims – this is according to the FBI. we don’t talk about it, but the data is there. we have not have an attack by foreign national since 9/11 – those we commonly reference, mostly US citizens. if you look at the muslim terrorists, how many were green card holders with priors that would technically fall under all this? it’s not much. so I do agree that it isn’t about safety. denying a 75 year old Iranian women entry, who had a green card since 1995 and has her family living here, also wasn’t about safety. I can go on and on. but yes, Trump has to make laws within some confines now, he has to please his donors and business colleagues, maybe his big base if he can, and of course he will be the ignorant tough guy that doesn’t want to get into details. just think of the headline or the tweet – “300 prior felons deported back to Iraq from detroit” that works well his base, his party, etc. how many people are going to question if they were felons from possession of weed decades ago? how many are going to ask their religion, especially when it really doesn’t matter to a lot white people out there. an immigrant that speaks a foreign language is an outsider, Christian or not, and a convicted felon is a criminal and a threat. that crap stays with you, making it hard to get a job even. this may seem harsh, but to the manipulative politician – making connections with muslim arab leaders could be seen as prevention as US citizens get radicalized and you can’t really touch them. but the Chaldean community, small, not known for terrorism, kind of a pawn for vote. again, nothing personal – Indian community is fairly small too. also, given the identified cases of welfare and EBT fraud – again, I am not saying the numbers are a high percent at all, but many republicans love stereotyping about immigrants, and they hate welfare in general, and that hate amplifies if it goes to an immigrant. this all makes for a very easy target for deportation.

  4. USA has some nerve removing people here illegally from the country? Who do they think they are? And just because some are convicted felons. How dare they? What do they think they are doing? I should be able to do whatever I want, whenever I want to do it. And if I dont get to do it then Im gonna scream and complain and blog about it until they…..oh wait

    • Oh I wonder why Iraq is now hell on earth? Oh wait? Please, come up with better arguments or spare your fingers the touch of the keyboard.

        • It’s in the article to question one. Question 2, I don’t know the circumstances for every crime committed but many served time already and are just now being deported. That solves nothing.

        • So you pay your debt to the US and then get deported for being here illegally. The US owes a person nothing who is here illegally and then becomes a felon. Whether they did the lawful thing in the past and deported them or not doesnt make being here illegally or being a felon lawful.

  5. The law is the law. You enter the country illegally, you violate the law. That simple. There are legal channels for immigration.

  6. All I can say is “THEN WHY DID YOU VOTE FOR TRUMP”. I personally tried telling a Chaldean leader, and he literally refused to listen – saying “you are not even Chaldean, trump will maga”. at least 20,000 Chaldeans voted for Trump – if they hadn’t, MI would be blue (the gap was under 10,000 here) Others pointed out that illegals from any country are illegal – to which you made some point about “doing analysis” and not “throwing around buzz words”. I am not going to debate you on policy of illegals – but I will remind you, that Trump did say he was going to deport illegals. He did say he would deport those convicted of a crime. You knew this was coming – but you voted for him. Did you think it only applied to Mexicans? fyi – they are Christian too, and their children cry when their dads get deported too. basically, from what I understand, you liked that he perpetuated hate for muslims. you thought, being Christian protected you, no matter how much I pleaded with you, saying we are all immigrants and he makes it worse for me, an Indian hindu as well (with 0 criminal history, a citizen, a vegetarian, who is well educated and pays a lot in taxes) it is a crappy situation, but Chaldeans knew the Pope opposed trump, they still voted this way, and I guess “be careful what you ask for, you might get it” applies

    • A lot of truth in what you are saying here. One blatantly false point is “you liked that he perpetuated hate for Muslims.” Not sure who the ‘you’ is here, but it isn’t me.

    • Man I hate when a country enforced their laws. That takes some real balls to pull a stunt like that. We should be able to decide which laws we want to follow and which we dont. I only want to follow laws that I agree with

    • So you like voting for someone who can let anyone to get into this country? What kind of loyalty you have for this country?

        • Daniel doesn’t strike me as person that reads much, otherwise he would know the comprehensive reform plans out there, that would have been far more effective than Trump’s. FYI, I know some who’s an attorney for the Dept of Homeland Security and I worked for them briefly as well. Under Obama, we had the strictest vetting of essentially any country out there. The problem is you probably don’t have good info, so let me provide it. We haven’t had an attack on this soil by foreign nationals since 9/11 – and while Giuliani may have fooled people, that did happen on Bush’s watch (not that it matters). Yes, terrorism did occur in the name of Islam, but many were US citizens – and both the number of attacks and total death toll, does amount to less than that perpetuated by White supremacists. not to mention, gun violence is tremendously larger, just looking “mentally unstable” school shooters. Oh, but Trump, I guess in the interest of Making America Safe Again, undid Obama regulations to allow the mentally unstable to buy guns. despite the grim RNC agenda – he’s done nothing really to make us safer. he’s allowing the countries with a history of terrorist attacks here, and not allowing those without any. If you look as far back as our FBI records go, we have had more terrorists from the UK (3 people) than from Iraq. To be clear, I am not muslim, nor am I denier or muslim apologist. I personally have tremendous issues with the faith – AFTER trying hard to understand the TRUE meaning as well. Nonetheless – accurate info needs to be given to people who want to be ignorant, and think “HRC = let everyone in. Trump = safety” you may not have noticed – Kushner had went around telling foreign nationals if they invest $500,000 in his real estate business, he could expedite a green card to the US. he also issued an apology for that. that door has been open for a long time, and it does allow wealthy folks to skip the normal processes of immigration with the decade+ long lines. however, no president’s son-in-law was ever caught promoting it, esp for their own business, and that less than 100days in.

        • i agree again and most people don’t read which is why they get my smart ass responses to their dumb comments.

  7. I wasn’t referring to you literally – but the collective you, as in your community. you cannot deny the anti-muslim sentiment in Chaldeans, and I understand the scar tissue. it was muslims who persecuted Chaldeans in Iraq. when there were even initial discussions of a mosque get permission for construction, there were protestors, who ironically weren’t white (like the KKK types one would think), but actually it was Chaldeans. To most lay people in the country, they wouldn’t get it, because its the same skin color — but obviously I get the history. so whether you engaged in it or not, it is fact, that there were Chaldeans who loved Trump’s anti-muslim agenda. This is further evidenced in all the videos currently, where they keep speaking of how they are Christian – which implies, they have no issues if muslims from Iraq get deported. (and yes, I get that it is bigger risk to life to be non-muslim in Iraq). In the middle of Feb, a prominent Chaldean church member endorsed the muslim ban. Look, if you read the comments, I don’t think the people are trolls – they may not be Chaldeans and know the history, but it is evident that a 50,000 foot view, it seems some Chaldeans are/were hoping for some special treatment.

    • Wrong on so many levels. Stereotyping a whole community now? My parents grew up in Baghdad among Muslim people. They all got along and used to go to each other’s houses to celebrate holidays.
      I refuse to be identified with the bigots you cite in your comment. And I will call them out as hypocrites, including the ‘prominent church member.’ I’m not religious but identify as Chaldean because the culture is part of my identity. I do not expect special treatment nor do I ever receive any.

      A ban is and always will be a stupid idea. The issue is not the refugees. It’s the children of the refugees who feel disenfranchised and are susceptible to being brain washed that turn into the extremists.

      http://thepointsoflife.boardingarea.com/%E2%80%8Btrumps-new-travel-ban-my-family-can-now-travel/

    • Also, one of the points you made against someone was suggesting loosely ‘you Americans de-stabilized our country’. While that accusation is agreeable, again the history shows the Chaldean community was very supportive of the Iraq. I know personally people cheering on the execution of Sadam. Chaldeans loved Bush and it was Bush that signed the agreement with the new Iraqi government that America would pull out in 2011. I definitely would have been a lot of work to change that (contrary to lies told by Trump) and it this point Iraq was now a sovereign democratic nation that did pose an active threat to the US. the point is that a pattern of hate doesn’t work very well, unless one is rich and white. A fundamental gap in understanding that I see, as an outside observer, is the desire of Christian exclusivity. I understand the appeal of that, but the practicality isn’t there. In the Detroit area, you see a clear split, where the Muslims are expected to live south of 8 mile, Dearborn, etc. The Christians in the north, Warren, Sterling Hts, Troy, etc. As muslims make their way north – OUTRAGE! Like I said, I get the scar tissue – but even if Chaldeans did not take an HS civics class here, they were granted asylum on account of ‘religious freedom’. The basis in which doors were opened is to promote religious tolerance. So then to assume, that the rules can be different for Christians and Muslims – kind of silly (even that is what Trump promised).

      • I don’t want to be associated with the Chaldeans you know. I grew up in Flint away from all this nonsense you are speaking of. Most of my family voted against Bush but there were those that did. Sorry to disappoint you, but I don’t fit into your definition of what it means to be Chaldean, and gladly so.

        • well then perhaps you don’t – but that doesn’t change the situation, now does it. as you put it yourself, you will call them hypocrites? but it seemed to me that when other people called them that above, you were defending? maybe I missed something. it’s quite possible that you were always on the right side of history, and in that case, you should join us and speak out when Trump does crazy things that victimize others as well. Many koreans experienced the same fate – came here when they were 3, got caught with weed when 17, been upstanding citizens, now 40 – and yea, likely to die back home. my point is regarding the many Chaldeans suffering today, who even admit they regret their support for Trump. They were forewarned that it would backfire and it did. So now you tell me what your agenda is and if you truly on the right side of history, we will cross paths in supporting better candidates in future elections. and perhaps, in the meantime, you can use your blog to write about the Koreans?

        • And this is why I (momentarily) considered running for office myself. Maybe one day.

          I can’t lay out my whole political platform in a blog comment. Suffice to say, I am not for deporting people from this country to a land that is now foreign to them. At the same time, I recognize the need for immigration reform. Many people, including my family, waited in line for years and struggled to come to America legally. That’s the right way to do it. Laws aside, how can you send people back to a war zone? How does that advance America’s interest? It seems to me that Iraq agreed to take these people back in exchange for being removed from Trump’s travel ban list.

          Awareness was my goal in this post. It wasn’t to say that Chaldeans are more special or are more entitled to stay in America than anyone.

        • I want to clarify – whether you did something or not, you don’t need to take it personally. my statements are indeed generally true. this does mean there are outliers, but again, factually speaking, as proven by article after article, as well as by statements by Chaldean leaders, both social and church – Chaldeans did vote in very numbers for Trump – for the reasons I mentioned. I am not stereotyping, I am responding to the specific folks on the interviews, on TV, today, complaining of the situation they are in, that admit they put themselves there, and expect to appeal to the president to change his mind because “we are Christian”. I think it is great that you don’t want to identify with them and you shouldn’t. I don’t know how old you are, but my guess is you are on the younger end, and that doesn’t matter – except I don’t how deeply familiar you are with politics. Holding a ballot this year, meant you were pretty much playing with fire. Trump’s paramount message was 2 fold, 1) jobs/economy and 2) immigration. Sterling Heights actually isn’t doing so bad as far as employment, and the housing market has been appreciating 15% YoY. Houses sell quickly. His message of immigration needed to be taken seriously, as it was always this – families being separated, people being sent places where life is at stake, etc. I just saw a statement to the news by someone said, I thought Trump would protect us . . . “how would you feel if your brother was taken by the government like this”. I made that exact argument during the election, in fact to the guy that ran the Chaldeans for Trump page. A muslim that gets deported back to Syria, probably has a brother here that will miss him too. It is nothing personal to you, but where a lot of people commenting here are differing from you, is they have hard time showing sympathy for the people who complained, because they (in some cases admittedly) brought a mad man into office when warned, and they are expecting exceptions from policy. I urge people, who are on the right side, to then help enact change. for most of us, that means just talking to our friends, extended family, i.e. community. obviously if you truly are removed from the Chaldean community, then fine, you could not influence them. as for mine, some liked Trump due to lower taxes and boy did I slam them. South Asians as a result (not just because of my efforts, but others) did oppose Trump in majority, even previous Bush/McCain voters crossing over. This is not to stereotype, but the general analytics are noteworthy.

        • True, but this is a democracy. Where is the checks from the Republicans in the House and Senate? They are the ones who are failing the American people. I’m a University of Michigan Chaldean, not too many of us out there!

        • Yes – I do think you may have lost the Chaldean vote 🙂 jk – it is hard to say, having one of your own, does have its appeal too. it gets interesting though in an ethnic community, when you be younger, don’t think like the elders — because then you have old folks calling your parents, to try “to reason”. it’s interesting stuff. but yes, the issue is clear – 3 branches, unchecked now, and again ironically the people that made that happen are complaining more right now than those that didn’t vote this in to begin with (generally speaking). I am lumping in healthcare as well, as a lot of people thought Trump would fix that, but has not delivered and likely will make things more expensive for those that were struggling and voted him in. that is a digression and I don’t want to go there. to answer your question of how sending people back to war zones – and advancing American interests – I think you know the answer. First, it is important to understand the current admin doesn’t deal in nuance, details or complexity. the travel ban was a page long, and didn’t even have forethought to specify what happens to green card holders or special visas for those that just helped the American military in Iraq. you or I would be more comprehensive at 3am, woken from bed. Secondly – Trump serves his own interests first and foremost, after that it is what falls into play. HRC did have a comprehensive and long plan on immigration reform, Trump’s is like a bullet points and is interpreted differently, city by city. The interest of GOP is to some extent, make America white again. I tried telling everyone that. So it doesn’t matter when immigrants go from here, as long as they go. to not be crass or judgmental – lets just say “enforce the law” (which I know doesn’t even apply), but keep a basic law, any immigrant that committed any crime, is out. No time for nuance to assess what the crime was, where they are going, value to US, etc. This lack of interest in detail was glaringly obvious, so I can never understand anyone expecting something different.

  8. I still stand by my points above, that counter your point “it doesn’t make sense to deport without looking at religion”. “how does deporting Chaldeans make Detroit safer”. I provided a more extensive post above, but you can hopefully clearly see you are promoting religious preference. America opened it’s doors to not only Chaldeans, but Bahai’s, Jews, etc — not because it is a Christian nation or an “anti-muslim” nation, but because of freedom of religion — and now it is green card holding felons who are muslim can go – that’s cool? like I mentioned above – no Islamic terror by foreign nationals since 9/11, all that did happen, boston, etc – US citizens – and this ban technically only affects green card holders with priors. So deporting Arabs doesn’t make us safer FROM TERRORISM. now the hard truth, since you asked – does deporting Chaldeans make Detroit safer? maybe – because if the Chaldean in question committed armed robbery or rape. there is safety from other crime you know. there is/was a thing called the Chaldean mafia, and I personally know of cases here where Chaldeans are a threat. I have seen first hand violent stalkers, people with gun charges, etc. you can just sit in court for a day, and you will see for yourself. I am not slamming the entire community as criminals, nor stereotyping that statistically Chaldean crime rate is higher than other races, but I will tell you it is not 0, and I will tell you there is no basis to support muslim deportation addresses prevention of these crimes vastly more than Chaldeans. I think this understanding seems missing among a lot of the protestors. The rules are pretty well known, if you come to this country on a green card – you are essentially “a guest in somebody else’s home”. This means, best behavior and disciplines – just like our moms teach us. You break the rules, you can get kicked out. That is effectively the story here for many – if you commit a crime, the ability to stay at that point is on a case by case basis. check ins are required periodically to maintain upstanding residency and avoidance of crime. in some of the cases, given the decades of good residency, it feels like a broken contract and sort of exploitation of that legal door to deport. but yea, that is Trump for you. that is exactly his whole history.

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