“The Homeland Security Department has decided to stop a program that required thousands of Arab and Muslim men to register with immigration authorities after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, officials said on Friday.”
If that phrase, “Arab and Muslim men,” had any substance, the program was wrongly conceived from the start. Arab men (and women and children) who are not Muslim have nothing to do with the problem of jihadist terrorism, except as its victims. The ideology of violent jihad is not held by Arabic-speaking Christians.
But there is more. “Of the 85,000 men who went to immigration offices early this year, as well as tens of thousands screened at airports and border crossings, 11 had links to terrorism, officials said.”
Sounds like a painstaking process, but I fail to see how a program that has stopped 11 terrorists before they could murder anyone is not working. But the problem, of course, is not that it’s a failure; it’s that it is “racist.” Therefore, “the program might be superseded by an effort in which immigration officials at 115 airports and 14 seaports will begin collecting digital fingerprints and photographs from foreign visitors who enter the United States with visas. That program, which is scheduled to begin in January, is not be specifically directed at Muslims and Arabs, he said.”
This is as silly as searching white-haired grandmothers in airports. Jihad terrorism isn’t being waged by Lutheran or Buddhist or animist or Hindu immigrants. I am sorry if non-terrorist Muslims will be inconvenienced, but if they are not doing anything illegal, then that is all they will suffer: inconvenience. The fact that jihad terrorism is coming from the Islamic world is an unpleasant fact of life; evidently the alternative to being realistic about it, which has become politically impossible, is to inconvenience everyone. I don’t mind being inconvenienced in order to help stop terrorism, but for Homeland Security to be fingerprinting Japanese tourists who are wielding nothing more lethal than cameras only diverts time and attention from real anti-terrorism efforts.