This is one of the stranger and more interesting news to come out of the Department of Homeland Security. Last May, DHS issued a report which enunciated the rules Immigration and Customs Enforcement would use to arrest, detain and deport undesirable aliens. Part of this document lists countries whose detained nationals will be subjected to enhanced examination. To my shock, Israel is on the list, along with some of seamier countries of the world including Iran, Iraq, Pakistan, Syria, Saudi Arabia and others. It’s also interesting to note the language used to describe these countries:
Screening Aliens From Specially Designated Countries
In addition to the Terrorist Watchlist screening, ICE uses a Third Agency Check (TAC) to screen aliens from specially designated countries (SDCs) that have shown a tendency to promote, produce, or protect terrorist organizations or their members (see appendix D for a list of SDCs).
So the question is: who is DHS thinking of when it included Israel on the list? Settler extremists? Or Israeli Palestinian leaders like Sheikh Raed Salah, who is in a British prison resisting his banning order from the Home Office? Or is DHS leaving its options open to include both groups?
My devout hope is that this designation could allow DHS and ICE to prevent the most homicidal of the settler leaders from spreading their hate here. The type of person I’m thinking of is Nadia Matar of Women in Green who told an audience at a Manhattan synagogue that Mahmoud Abbas should be assassinated. She did all this while on a fundraising trip here to raise money to support the theft of Palestinian land on behalf of settlers and other acts of violence and fraud. I see no reason why our government should allow such individuals to roam freely and spread their hate. Not to mention that the funds they raise here are tax-deductible, meaning that U.S. citizens help subsidize the gifts.
But would DHS and the Obama administration actually have the chutzpah and backbone to take on the murderous among the settlers who arrive on our shores? Surely it would be far easier for them to target Israeli Palestinians who Israel does a much better job of criminalizing as spies and terrorists. It would be easier to follow Israel’s lead on this rather than striking out on our own and actually applying the laws and rules uniformly to both sides. I’d love to be surprised. We shall see.
We should be forthright and concede that DHS is falling all over itself to explain that because Israel is listed does not mean the U.S. is calling Israel a terrorist state. It means that certain citizens of Israel may be designated as terrorists. But the plain fact is that if DHS wanted to write the above quoted passage differently it easily could’ve, but it didn’t. So we have a perfect right to parse the language of that statement and note that it states clearly that Israel “has a tendency to promote, produce, or protect terrorist organizations.”
This blog has documented scores of examples of Jewish terrorists, some of whom are U.S. citizens, running free in Israel. Most of them, even if they’re monitored, never face charges, let alone imprisonment for their crimes. Those few who do face charges, and are held nominally accountable for their crimes (like Jack Teitel) usually end up in mental asylums rather than prison, under the assumption that not even a Jewish terrorist deserves prison (though of course Palestinian terrorists DO).
We’ll have to see how DHS enforces this provision; whether it singles out Israeli Palestinians alone or whether it applies it fairly and proportionately.