Winners write history with alternate facts

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CRISPIN R. ARANDA

BEFORE the Constitution of the United States took effect—after the 13 colonies declared independence from the British—there were no immigration laws to control the entry of the unwanted in North America.

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In fact, there was no United States of America to speak of; the land that the colonists and would-be settlers occupied was part of the New World.

The French and Spanish colonists were already in the New World, fighting each other for land and wealth, 50 years before the Pilgrim Fathers reached Plymouth Rock on board the Mayflower (based on Kenneth C. Davis’ new book as excerpted in the Smithsonian.com).

The 13 colonies that created the United States of America had British origins, provinces that declared independence from Britain with the campaign slogan “no taxation without representation.” With established government and territory, the victors drafted and enacted the US Constitution, which came into force in 1789.

One hundred eight years later, the first Immigration Act came into being banning immigration to the US of the unwanted or excludables, individuals who— regardless of nationality or religion—are considered to be “imbeciles, feeble-minded people with physical or mental disabilities that prevent them from working, tuberculosis victims, children who enter the US without parents, and those who committed crimes of ‘moral turpitude’.”

If the Immigration Act of 1907 had already been in force when Freidrich Trump was deported from the state of Bavaria two years earlier, Donald Trump would not have been born in the United States and become the country’s 45th President.

Donald’s grandfather was deported for failure to perform military service before migrating to America, which under current US immigration law falls under criminal activities, specifically Section 212(a)(2)(A) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

This violation is also affirmed in the US State Department’s nine Foreign Affairs Manual 302.3, an immigration crime against governmental authority, for failure to report for military induction.

Of course, President Trump was able to avoid or defer from serving in the military during the Vietnam War not for having small hands but for having bone spurs in his heels.

Now, the President of the United States is the one dictating immigration rules. He won the presidential elections not by popular choice but by rules written by the winners: the Electoral College system affirms the winner after the popular votes are cast.

The founding fathers (winners of America’s Revolutionary War) incorporated this process of confirming the winner in the US Constitution “as a compromise between the election of the President by a vote in Congress and election of the President by a popular vote of qualified citizens.”

Mr. Trump has signed an executive order barring a new breed of unwanted, excludables or inadmissibles, individuals who are considered to be a threat to America’s national security.

Titled “Protection Of The Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry Into The United States,” Mr. Trump’s executive order ”denies refugees and immigrants from certain Muslim-majority countries entry to the United States and puts in place a 90-day block on entry to the US from citizens from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Sudan, Libya and Somalia.”

The indefinite blocking of refugees from Syria is a callous act, if the origins of the refugee exodus from Syria is to be—and must be—considered.

To date, more than 250,000 Syrians have died in the four-and-a-half years of ethnic conflict in the Middle East.

While the war’s immediate and most recent trigger were the anti-government protests that become a full-scale civil war forcing more than 11 million from their homes, the Middle East conflict is a war by proxy of the United States and Russia.

Alliances are fleeting and support for new players or proxies change with the national interest of the two superpowers. The US backs the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Iran and Saudi Arabia are the main protagonists in the struggle for dominance in the Middle East. Inside each country’s population the Sunni-Shiite sectarian conflict festers.

Iran and Syria are at war with Saudi Arabia. When Yemen ousted a Kingdom-backed president, the US helped Riyadh launch a bombing campaign at a time when the Arab Spring was peaking, with Syria as an active player. Inside Syria, opposition was growing, culminating in the battle between government troops and rebels, especially in the city of Aleppo.

Aleppo is the tragic face of this factional fratricide. With the help of Soviet air strikes the Assad government has taken back control of Aleppo from the rebels. Despite the danger of further and deeper involvement, the US provided support to the rebels. It was also within this period when the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria emerged, stepped into the vacuum and subsequently declared a “caliphate.”

The Syrian civil war—with the US and Russia proxies duking it out—forced Syrians to leave their homes, a humanitarian crisis that saw the exodus of more than 11 million Syrians across 15 European countries, with the US (under former President Barack Obama) agreeing to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees.

With the stroke of his pen, US President Trump ignored the involvement of the US in the conflict and immediately barred the further entry of Syrian refugees as part of his “extreme vetting” action to “protect the United States.”

This “extreme vetting” procedures intend to keep out “radical Islamic terrorists,” Mr. Trump explains, “we don’t want them here.”

What are the other reasons to refuse admission of unwanted individuals into the United States?

The Immigration and Nationality Act as amended lists the inadmissibility provisions briefly described below:

INA 212(a)(1): Health-related grounds
INA 212(a)(2): Criminal and related grounds
INA 212(a)(3): Security and related grounds
INA 212(a)(4): Public charge
INA 212(a)(5): Labor certification, qualification
INA 212(a)(6): Illegal entrants, immigration violators, misrepresentation
INA 212(a)(7): Documentation requirements
INA 212(a)(8): Ineligible for citizenship
INA 212(a)(9): Previously removed, unlawfully present;
INA 212(a)(10): Miscellaneous

Laws on visas and immigration are introduced, debated, passed, enacted in both Houses of the US Congress, and then subsequently signed by the President.

Implementation is done by the executive branch headed by the elected US President and, unless challenged in court, either remains in force or amended.

The current laws and regulations on visas and admissions are enshrined under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).

Rules on issuance of visas are covered by regulations issued by the Department of State through the Foreign Affairs Manuals.

Refusal of visas on terrorism-related grounds are found under Title 9 of the Foreign Affairs Manual, Section 302.6-2 Terrorist Activities, also defined under Section 212(a)(3)(b) of the INA as a person who has engaged in or would be engaged in a terrorist activity either as a member, supporter or believer of a terrorist organization.

The Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) and the Communist Party of the Philippines / New People’s Army (CPP/NPA) are “foreign organizations that are designated by the Secretary of State in accordance with section 219 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), as amended.”

The Executive Order of President Trump does not include the Philippines as a “predominantly Muslim country” and unless a visa applicant is considered to be a member, supporter, sympathizer or believer in the two foreign terrorist organizations from the Philippines, an immigrant or nonimmigrant visa could be issued.

History—backed by facts—is written by the winners. This time though, facts are alternate truths, according to Kellyanne Conway, a spokesperson for President Trump.

Chuck Todd, host of NBC’s “Meet the Press,” however, called alternate facts for what they really are: falsehoods – lies.

But that is what the White House could be described: here lies the presidency.

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1 Comment

  1. maximo p fabella on

    Of course the winners write the . If Spanish did not conquer the Visayas/Philippines, we would be under the datus..
    The other possibility, the Chji the CFhinese or other Euro[eans would conquer us. The Ducth and the English ied. tried. Our neigbors, Indonesia, Malaysia, Fooosa, all olccupied. Japan was nt in position, though the Chinese were.
    You can guess, if we were luckier with other conquerors.