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Lessons Learned in Mass Refugee Immigration

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.

During the last year of the Obama administration, the U.S. allowed nearly 85,000 refugees to enter the country. President Trump campaigned on a strictimmigration crackdown and a desire to limit mass refugee immigration. TheTrump administration is planning on reducing overall annual refugeeadmissions to, at most, 45,000 annually. The cap has not been this low since 2006.

President Trump has also signed a new executive order to limit immigration from eight nations “until we are sure that we can conduct proper screeningand vetting of those countries’ nationals.”  Venezuela and North Korea were added to six countries listed on previous bans—Chad, Iran, Libya, Somalia,Syria, and Yemen. This new limit is better clarified but is sure to be tested in the courts.

President Trump used his September 19th speech to the UN to explain a rationale and well-thought out plan on how to balance compassion with caution in dealing with the refugee situation. He emphasized a “safe, responsible, and humanitarian approach” that positions refugee settlements in a way that facilitates their eventual return to help rebuild the countries they love.

President Trump asserts: “Over the long term, uncontrolled migration is deeply unfair to both the sending and the receiving countries. For the sending countries, it reduces domestic pressure to pursue needed politicaland economic reform, and drains them of the human capital necessary tomotivate and implement those reforms. For the receiving countries, thesubstantial costs of uncontrolled migration are borne overwhelmingly by low-income citizens whose concerns are often ignored by both media and government.”

His plan is cost-effective and culture sensitive: “For the cost of resettling one refugee in the United States, we can assist more than 10 in their home region. Out of the goodness of our hearts, we offer financial assistance to hosting countries in the region, and we support recentagreements of the G20 nations that will seek to host refugees as close totheir home countries as possible.” Is it not better to be working in close to home in Jordan than being unemployed and out of place somewhere in the West?

For those who think such limits are unnecessary, read Douglas Murray’s well-documented book, The Strange Death of Europe. It chronicles the impact of mass immigration on Europe. Rather than easily fitting in, the majority of Muslim refugees in France found their own suburbs to settle in, Seine Saint-Denis near Paris. The same has happening in certain towns in North England, Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Stockholm, and Malmo. Pubs and churches in these areas were closing.

From Theo van Gogh to Kurt Westergaard and from Oriana Fallaci to Michael Houellebecq, people who lead campaigns against the refugees were subject to physical intimidation or even killed. After numerous terrorist attacks, honor killings and cartoon attacks, it was becoming clear throughout Europe that assimilation was not working. There was no flexibility on equality of the sexes or gay rights. Militant refugees did not share the West’s views on freedom, individual rights, or religious tolerance.

In response to problems with mass immigration, porous borders began to close. The UK voted to leave the EU. Fences went up between Hungary and Serbia, between Bulgaria and Turkey, and between Macedonia and Greece. Refugees were becoming increasingly unwelcome.

After continual attempts to justify her decision to accept thousands of refugees, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, finally admitted the failure of refugees to assimilate into German society. Her Potsdam “state of the nation” speech in October of 2010 conceded that the integration and multiculturalism she had espoused had “failed, utterly failed.” She conceded that we had “kidded ourselves for a while. We said, ‘they won’t stay, some time they will be gone,’ but this isn’t reality.” At that point, only 48,000 people had received asylum. Her words did not result in a change in policy. After five years of increasing numbers, Chancellor Merkel allowed 1.5 million refugees into Germany in 2015.

May Americans never face the sentiments expressed by a German Syrian migrant named Aras Bacho. He complained that migrants were “fed up” with the “angry” German people who “insult and agitate” and are “unemployed racists.” He continued, “We refugees…do not want to live in the same country as you. You can, and I think you should, leave Germany. Germany does not fit you. Why do you live here?... Look for a new home.”

Refugees to America will continue to be accepted at a slower pace. Muslim immigrants who are fully vetted from responsible nations will still be welcomed. But, thankfully, under the Trump administration, there will be no mass refugee immigration like Europe has experienced.

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