Get ready for a surge of refugees from Syria, America.
Even with Obama’s alacritous commitment to bring in (only Muslim) Syrian refugees, the process began as a trickle thanks to existing protocol that established a protracted process for processing refugee applications. While only 100-250 refugees were admitted per month for the first 6 months of fiscal year 2016, that number has increased exponentially since April. Over 1,000 refugees were admitted in May and 950 have been admitted in just the first 8 days of June, according to the database of the Refugee Processing Center. Thus, although only 3,755 refugees have been admitted this fiscal year, Obama is well on his way to meeting his goal of 10,000 Syrians, given that they are now being admitted at a clip of over 100 per day.
As we noted in April, the Administration has set up a “resettlement surge center” in Amman, Jordan to process the refugee applications expeditiously. While the American people were promised a vetting process of 18-24 months per refugee, this new “surge” agenda has condensed the process to just three months. Now that this center has been operating for several months, Obama has a ready-made refugee mill that can churn out thousands of applications per month.
The Center for Immigration Studies posted an analysis of the expedited process and draws attention to comments from Simon Henshaw, principal deputy assistant secretary of the State Department's Bureau of Population, Refugees, and Migration, confirming that 12,000 applicants were interviewed between February and April in Amman, Jordan:
So the fact that 225 Syrian refugees were admitted into the United States in a new single-day record for Syrian refugee approvals is beside the point. What is of importance here is that 12,000 were interviewed in such a short time driven by the urgency to meet the September deadline. Of those, 4,700 have been approved, according to U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Johnson, and an additional 7,900 are awaiting final approval. How many come in a day or a week is more likely related to logistics (plane tickets, welcoming committees, available housing, etc.) and final screening.
As the State Department's Henshaw stated in his oral presentation: "We have enough in perspective to bring them [10,000] in, 2,000 were brought already. We are on track."
Clearly, Obama is stepping on the gas pedal and is committed to bringing in as many Syrian refugees no matter the cost to the US. This news comes on the heels of National Security Advisor Susan Rice announcing a major global summit on refugees in New York on September 20. Obama is likely accelerating the pace of refugee admissions ahead of this conference and will very likely attempt to flood the zone in the final months of his presidency to front-end fiscal year 2017 with tens of thousands of refugees from the Middle East. Obama is already planning to bring in a total of 100,000 refugees from around the globe, and this Amman refugee mill can ensure that enough are already approved while he’s president to make it difficult for the next president to block.
Sadly, the security of Americans is the last thing on the minds of Obama’s bureaucrats at the State Department and Homeland Security. Now is the time we should be applying the breaks, not the accelerator, to refugee resettlement. German police have just released a report linking 69,000 crimes in Germany to refugees just in the first quarter of 2016. The Netherlands is investigating a sleeper cell of ISIS supporters among their refugee population. One of the things that had distinguished America from Europe was a longer, slower, more deliberate process of resettling refugees. Obama is now demonstrating the desire to bring in as many refugees as possible, which is a recipe for repeating the mistakes of Europe.
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