PROVO, Utah – President Trump recently introduced a replacement for his controversial travel ban. The new ban includes immigrants from Syria, Iran, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan and Libya. This time he’s taken Iraq off the list.
Donna Bowen, a political science professor at Brigham Young University, said the White House has made no case for why it’s chosen some countries and not others. Bowen said Iraq’s absence on the list can be attributed to the strong relations the U.S. now has with the Iraqi government. She also said some Iraqis have put their lives in jeopardy to help the U.S. stabilize the Middle East.
“Now if we don’t owe them, I don’t know who we owe, and if they haven’t helped us, I don’t know who has ever helped us,” Bowen said.
There have been no acts of terrorism inside the U.S. from Iraq or from any countries listed on the travel ban. The countries who had citizens involved in the 9/11 terrorist attacks are also not listed on the ban.
Bowen said that even with the Salt Lake International Airport so close, the vetting process that has been in place since the Obama Administration is so complicated that it takes almost two years for immigrants to go through. She said this should leave people with little reason to worry about a terrorist attack from Iraqi immigrants.
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