By Kit — Off-Guardian Jan 30, 2017
They’re calling it the “Muslim Ban”, that’s the headline attention-grabber. It has its own twitter hashtag too. Everyone, all around the progressive “free world” is coming together to denounce this barbarism with one voice. Actors are making speeches at the SAG awards, and earnest navel-gazing columnists are writing about how this travel ban clashes with “British values”. There’s a petition to ban Trump from entering the UK with over a million signatures already (only tree from the British Antarctic Territories this time). John Harris, in the Guardian, even manages to make this all about Brexit – how triggering Article 50 will push us closer to a Trump administration that is “ruining America’s reputation”. Not even Jeremy Corbyn was immune, his biggest weakness it seems, is that he cannot ever miss an oppurtunity to be “nice”.
So what does it all mean? I have no idea. Is it a catastrophe? Absolutely not. It’s not even a surprise. This is something Trump spoke about doing over and over again during his campaign. That we’ve got to the point where a politician actually doing something he said he was going to do is a shock, is perhaps the most revealing aspect of this whole situation.
- It’s NOT a Muslim ban. It applies to only seven countries: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. All in all less than 200 million of the world’s 1.6 BILLION Muslims are affected.
- It’s NOT permanent, or even long-term. It’s only 90 days long for everywhere but Syria.
- It’s NOT unprecedented, Jimmy Carter banned all immigrants from Iran during the Hostage Crisis, and Barack Obama put a six month delay on Iraqi refugees in 2011. Just two years ago, during the “ebola crisis”, America imposed a travel ban on people coming in from West Africa. It is an entirely sensible and pragmatic thing to do….if you believe your country to be in some kind of danger.
NOTE: Somehow, in the last four years or so, the media has established a meme that protecting the borders of your country is akin to racism. (This is probably part of a corporate, globalist agenda to allow the free movement of cheap labour, to undermine workers rights).
Now – let’s look at the seven named countries.
Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. These seven countries have all been bombed by America in the last 12 months, and regularly going back dozens of years.
Obama sent predator drones to attack weddings and markets in Somalia and Iraq, and Britain and US sell bombs to the Saudis, who drop them on Yemeni civilians without a thought of repercussion, or even rebuke, from their Western allies. These countries have been destroyed. Libya, Iraq and Somalia are husks of states, with barely infrastructure enough to supply water to everyone, let alone do background checks on all the mercenaries and militant zealots hopping over the borders between the various war-zones America has dotted the Middle-East with.
Interestingly, none of these cynical and murderous acts of war ever resulted in a petition to stop Bush, Clinton or Obama from entering the country. Creating a failed state, killing a million people, and rendering millions homeless is less of a black-mark on your character than a 90 day travel ban.
The idea it “damages America’s reputation”? That is hilarious. America’s reputation was in tatters decades ago, to anyone paying even the slightest bit of attention. If drone assassinations, or dropping Agent Orange on Vietnamese children, or cluster bombs on Baghdad, or torturing people in Gitmo doesn’t dint your belief in American values…then a 90 travel ban shouldn’t either. And if it does, you need to re-sort your priorities.
What those seven countries have in common is not Islam, but chaos, violence and (allegedly) terrorism.
IF you believe in the rise of al-Qaeda and ISIS, IF you still think that these organizations are anything but American constructs for proxy wars and regime change, IF you truly believe in the fear porn and staged-managed terror the media hydra constantly pumps out, IF you truly believe these people are a threat to ordinary innocent civilians all over “the West”…then you have to agree a travel ban is a practical and logical step to control that threat. Just as it was in the 1970s, just as it was in 2011, just as it was in 2014.
And if your response to this move, as the mainstream media response has been, is to talk as if this threat doesn’t exist? Well, then you are admitting that you don’t believe your own coaverage, that all the hyped-up “terrorism” talk was at best ratings driven hysteria, and at worst agenda-pushing lies.
The political establishment’s rush to virtue signal and oppose this move simply confirms what so many of us in the alt-news have been saying for years – terrorism was never the threat they pretended it was.
The question becomes – why is the vast majority of the media, the establishment and their various media voices so against this move? Is it because it means nothing? It is essentially harmless, but allows “liberals” and “progressives” to add some virtuous notes to their CV though strident opposition.
Is it simply a case that Trump will be opposed and ridiculed no matter what he does? If so, why? What good does turning the POTUS into a figure of scorn and mockery do anyone?
Is Trump essentially the anti-Obama? Obama was a construct that allowed immediate good-by association. Supporting Obama meant you were a good-guy, perhaps in a change of tack we now have a president you have to hate. Perhaps it’s all just an elaborate social experiment. It’s impossible to tell anymore.
The first 10 days of Trump’s presidency has, so far, produced far more questions than answers.