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FORMER TOP NATIONAL SECURITY OFFICIALS: IMMIGRATION BAN "UNDERMINES" NATIONAL SECURITY

River Stillwood

Former Secretaries of State John Kerry and Madeline Albright, former Secretary of Defense/CIA Director Leon Panetta, former Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano, and a host of other former top national security officials published a 6-page declaration that the White House order to ban immigration from Iraq, Iran, Syria, Sudan, Somalia, and Yemen "undermines" our national security.

“We all agree that the United States faces real threats from terrorist networks and that vetting is necessary,” they say. “We all are nevertheless unaware of any specific threat that would justify the travel ban’ established by the executive order."

They state, "There is no national security purpose for a total ban on entry for aliens from the seven named countries."

Without clear justification for the ban, they say it will endanger America's troops in the field. "Every day, American soldiers work and fight alongside allies in some of the named countries who put their lives on the line to protect Americans... We risk placing our military efforts ast risk by sending an insulting message to those citizens and all Muslims."

They say it "will disrupt key counterterrorism, foreign policy, and national security partnerships that are critical to our obtaining the necessary information ...to address the threat posed by terrorist groups such as ISIL."

They say it will "endanger intelligence sources in the field" because some rely on human sources in some of the countries listed. Trump's immigration ban "breaches the faith of those very sources, who have risked much or all to keep American's safe -- and whom our officers had promised always to protect with the full might of our government and our people."

It will also strain our relationships in Europe and the MIddle East and undermine years of efforts to bring them closer.

It will feed recruitment efforts by ISIL and other extremist groups, especially those who claim we are not just at war with them, but with their religion.

The immigration ban will disrupt law enforcement efforts in Muslim-American communities in the US and make the identification of extremists who might hide among them more difficult.

It will have "a devastating humanitarian impact," by turning away women and children who had been victimized by actual terrorists, those coming for medical treatment, study or scholarly exchange, funerals, and other pressing family needs.

It will "cause economic damage to American citizens and residents by limiting foreign travelers, especially students, who "annually inject hundreds of billions into the US economy, supporting well over a million US jobs."

Former CIA Director Michael V. Hayden explains that the immigraton ban clearly portrays the US as "hateful" and "anti-Islamic" when one of the most powerful tools they have for recruiting foreigners is "selling the [American] dream."

They do not want the ban argued in court, but cancelled outright before it does more damage to our national security.


For More:

The full declaration posted by Washingtonpost.com: http://apps.washingtonpost.com/g/documents/politics/declaration-of-national-security-officials/2324/


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