Muslim Ban

In a speech to American Muslim voters, Joe Biden publicly promised that he would “overturn” President Trump’s Muslim Ban on the very first day of his presidency. 

“I will end the Muslim Ban on Day one.” Biden boastfully said at the Million Muslim Voters Summit, an online event hosted by the American Muslim political group Emgage Action.

What Biden calls Trump’s “Muslim Ban” only applies to high-risk countries where “Islamic terrorism” is a problem, and not even all Muslim countries where it is a problem, so  it can hardly be called a “Muslim Ban.”

The ban initially “restricted” travel from Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad, Venezuela and North Korea. Chad was later removed from the list. The United States Supreme Court’s majority argued that the policy was not a Muslim ban, citing the inclusion of North Korea and Venezuela and the administration’s process of granting exemptions.

In February 2020, President Trump added Africa’s biggest country, Nigeria, Myanmar, Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Sudan and Tanzania, to his restricted travel list. The ban will also prevent immigrants from Sudan and Tanzania from moving to the United States through the diversity visa lottery.

Considering that there are 56 Muslim-majority countries, these restrictions on just a few Muslim countries, hardly constitute a “Muslim ban.”  Even Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. wrote that Mr. Trump had the “statutory authority” to make national security judgments in the realm of immigration.

Biden and his surrogates say they intend to act quickly on the following:

Middle East: Restore assistance to the Palestinian Authority that the Trump administration has eliminated, as well as to agencies that support Palestinian refugees. Biden hasn’t said he will reverse Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital or return the embassy to Tel Aviv.

United Nations: Restore US membership in UN agencies such as the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization and possibly the UN Human Rights Commission.

Europe: Tone down rhetoric Trump has used to berate and insult European allies. Biden can be expected to try to warm relations among NATO partners.

Africa: Try to raise America’s profile on the continent, which has become a new battleground for competition with China.

Asia: Revert to a traditional US stance supporting the presence of American troops in Japan and South Korea. Biden has also criticized Trump’s personal relationship with Kim.

Latin America: Cancel Trump administration agreements that sent asylum-seeking immigrants to Mexico and other countries while they await court dates and halt all new construction of the southern border wall. Biden also wants to restart Obama-era engagement with Cuba.

Joe Biden and his surrogates say his top priorities, if he beats Trump, will include resuming assistance to Palestinian Authority and United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA)

Should Joe Biden win the White House in November, America will likely be in for a foreign policy about-face as Biden reverses, dismantles or severely curtails many of President Donald Trump’s most significant and boldest actions.

From the Middle East to Asia, Latin America to Africa and, particularly, Europe, and on issues including trade, terrorism, arms control and immigration, Biden and his advisers have vowed to unleash a “tsunami of change” in how the US handles itself in the international arena.

With few exceptions, Americans could expect Biden to re-engage with traditional allies. Where the iconoclastic Trump has used blunt threats to press his case, Biden would be more inclined to seek common ground.

Historically, US foreign policy hasn’t changed drastically as the presidency shifted between Democratic and Republican administrations. Allies and adversaries stayed the same and a non-partisan diplomatic corps pursued American interests.

That changed with Trump. Under his “America First” policy, he viewed both allies and the foreign policy establishment with suspicion, while speaking warmly of adversaries like North Korea’s Kim Jong Un and Russia’s Vladimir Putin.

But Trump found it hard to make swift changes. Academics often say that American foreign policy is like an aircraft carrier: “Easy to order a wholesale change of direction from the bridge, but far more difficult and time-consuming to alter course.”

Trump saw that when he was unable to “extricate” the US from the Iran nuclear deal for more than year. His well-publicized “withdrawals” from the Paris Climate Accord and the World Health Organization won’t actually become final until after the November 3 election, if ever. His decision to “redeploy” thousands of troops from Germany could take years.

Trump’s initial problems may have reflected a lack of governmental experience by both him and his top advisers. That created a steep learning curve that was complicated by their intense distrust of national security institutions.

Biden, with his Senate and White House experience, may be better positioned to deliver on change swiftly. Biden told reporters in Delaware that he knows “how to get things done internationally. I understand the national security and intelligence issues. That’s what I’ve done my whole life. Trump has no notion of it. None,” he boastfully claimed.

Biden’s campaign also has assembled an experienced team of foreign policy advisers: Jake Sullivan served as deputy assistant to president Barack Obama and policy planning director at the State Department. Nicholas Burns had high-level foreign policy positions under presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton. Tony Blinken was deputy secretary of state and deputy national security adviser to Obama.

Susan Rice, national security adviser and UN ambassador under Obama, is a leading candidate to be Biden’s vice-presidential running mate. If she isn’t selected, she could become a key adviser if Biden wins.

The Trump campaign casts Biden’s foreign policy experience as a weakness. “Joe Biden’s record of appeasement and globalism would be detrimental for American foreign policy and national security, and after decades of the status quo, President Trump has made it clear that the United States will no longer be taken advantage of by the rest of the world,” deputy press secretary Ken Farnaso said in a statement.

For decades, the first and often only foreign policy shift that new presidents of both parties directed on their first day in office, and Trump was no exception, was abortion-related.

Like clockwork, Republicans enacted the so-called “Mexico City” language — known by opponents as the “global gag rule” — to prohibit the use of US foreign assistance for abortion-related services. Democrats rescinded it and should Biden win, he has promised to follow suit.

But he’s also pledged to “demolish” other Trump policies on Day One. They include “restoring” US funding and membership to the WHO and “halting” efforts to oppose the Paris Climate Accord. He’s promised to call top NATO leaders and declare of US foreign policy, “We’re back” while convening a summit of major heads of state in his first year.

One area that will require more nuance is China, which Trump has placed at the top of his foreign policy agenda and on which he has painted Biden as weak. After previously boasting of warm ties with Chinese leader Xi Jinping, Trump has relentlessly attacked China, blaming it for the coronavirus outbreak that threatens his reelection prospects.

Biden has been slower to directly criticize Trump’s recent actions against China, but his campaign questions whether the president will eventually undermine his administration’s tough actions of late by personally striking softer tones toward Beijing.

The administration has a history of talking very loudly but not producing results,” said Jeff Prescott, a campaign foreign policy adviser.

Biden also has said he would immediately “restore” daily press briefings at the White House, State Department and Pentagon, events once deemed critical to communicate US policy that the Trump administration has all but abandoned.

Joe Biden wants Islam Faith taught in Schools

One Response to “Muslim Ban”

  1. Reblogged this on kommonsentsjane and commented:
    Reblogged on kommonsentsjane/blogkommonsents.

    For your information. Not good news.



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