In this issue of the newsletter
New: CIA “anti-terrorism” award goes to a Saudi Prince in line for throne
New: “Travel ban” blocked our Iraqi ministry partner from entering USA
Update: United Nations should have no part in “vetting” refugees
Update: Second year of Diapers for Refugees program begins in March!
Not a joke: Saudi prince in line for throne gets CIA anti-terrorism medal
First week on the job new CIA Director bows to Saudis: This is not a joke, it is not fake news and it has not been reported by CNN, Fox News, ABC, CBS, or NBC. This CIA award to a Saudi prince has not been mentioned in the New York Times, the Washington Post or any other American newspaper — but it is big news in the Middle East!
To be honest, I was just flat out shocked when the new director of the CIA, Mike Pompeo, jumped on a military aircraft and flew to Saudi Arabia his first week on the job. One source told me the new desk he ordered had not even been delivered to his office before he headed to Saudi Arabia. What he did there was even more shocking.
CIA Director Mike Pompeo handed the George Tenet Medal for Counter-terrorism work to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Naif bin Abdulaziz, Deputy Premier and Minister of Interior in Saudi Arabia, for “his unbound contribution to realize world security and peace.” This is the man next in line for the Saudi “throne” (next dictator).
In a press statement to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA), which is operated by the Saudi government, Abdulaziz expressed his appreciation for Director Pompeo bestowing on him the award. Again, this is not a joke and it is not fake news.
The only outlets in the United States reporting this outrage were the Ron Paul Institute, Barbwire, The Religious Freedom Coalition and a handful of other Internet sites critical of Saudi Arabia. My good friend Julio Serveo wrote the Barbwire story which was posted at the Religious Freedom Coalition site.
I am astonished that this has been hidden from the American people so successfully.
Julio Serveo said it best in his article, “An award to Saudi Arabia for fighting terrorism is akin to an award to Hitler for fighting Nazism or an award to Stalin for fighting the Soviet communism.” If this award was a joke, it was a bad one.
All the major terror organizations including al-Qaeda, al-Nusra, the Islamic State (ISIS) and the Taliban have at one time or the other been supported in some way from Saudi Arabia.
Fifteen of the nineteen 9-11 Islamic terrorists were from Saudi Arabia. Osama bin Laden was from Saudi Arabia and his family still runs major businesses there.
Virtually all the financing for Sunni Muslim terrorist groups comes from Saudi Arabia and the other Sunni Muslim Gulf States. The Saudi intelligence services financed and armed the Sunni gangs that started the Syrian Civil War in 2011.
Virtually all Islamic terror is Sunni Muslim. The only Shia “terror group” is Hezbollah which has literally fought wars with Israel. But Hezbollah attacks military, not civilian, targets and is the largest operator of hospitals in Lebanon. That does not make them “good guys,” but they are not in the same league with al-Qaeda and have never attacked a target in the United States or Europe.
In fact, there has never been, to my knowledge, a Shia Muslim terror attack on civilians in Europe or the United States. On the other hand, every terror attack in America has been Sunni Muslim and has had some ties to Saudi Arabia. By some ties, I mean either direct, or the terrorists attended Sunni Muslim mosques associated in some way with Saudi Arabia.
Every attack in the USA has been done by Sunni Muslims, even the Ft. Hood attack which President Obama called “workplace violence.”
In Serveo’s article he referred to a comment by John Perkins in his 2004 book “Confessions of an Economic Hit Man.” He said:
“The evidence was indisputable: Saudi Arabia, America’s longtime ally and the world’s largest oil producer, had somehow become, as a senior Treasury Department official put it, ‘the epicenter’ of terrorist financing… Saudi largess encouraged U.S. officials to look the other way, some veteran intelligence officers say. Billions of dollars in contracts, grants, and salaries have gone to a broad range of former U.S. officials who had dealt with the Saudis: ambassadors, CIA station chiefs, even cabinet secretaries…”
Did President Trump send CIA Director Pompeo to Saudi Arabia for his first overseas mission as director, or was this his decision?
I don’t think President Trump ordered Pompeo to go to Saudi Arabia. I do not believe that President Trump was aware that Pompeo was going to give Prince Abdulaziz this prestigious CIA medal. Rather, I believe that CIA Director Pompeo has been in the pocket of the Saudi royal family since his time on the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence in the House. It was Pompeo’s duty in Congress to oversee the CIA and now he runs it.
Just as was true under the Bush and Obama Administrations, the Saudis can do no wrong in the eyes of the CIA. Every briefing that President Trump receives will pump up the Saudi royals, while Christians in the Middle East will pay the price. I pray that the President will watch his Twitter account and read about the human rights abuses of the Saudi royals. If he reads just his briefings from the CIA, the Christians of the Middle East may be exterminated.
Frankly I don’t know how Director Pompeo can sleep at night.
Our Ministry Partner in Iraq Forced to Cancel USA Trip
Extreme Vetting and Christians: Under President Obama, Christians in Iraq, particularly leaders of ministries, were barred from travel to the USA. As recently as May, 2015 the Obama State Department denied a visa to Dominican Sister Diana Momeka.
The nun was to travel to the United States as part of a multiethnic, interdenominational delegation from Iraq to testify before Congress and plead the case of religious minorities being persecuted by the Islamic State group (ISIS).
Sister Momeka was the only Christian in the group. When the Obama State Department denied her visa, that meant there were no Christians in the group to testify about the persecution, yet Christians are the most persecuted group in Iraq.
Our ministry partner: Although educated in the West and speaking fluent English, the general manager of our partner ministry in Iraq was also refused visas at one time or the other during the Obama Administration. Last year he finally “told the right agent” his story at the U.S. Embassy and obtained a mutli-entry visa. He was scheduled to arrive the first week of March.
When President Trump announced a suspension of all travel from “terror prone” nations, Iraq was on the list. Because of the uncertainty in the courts over the President’s order, his trip to the United States, included all meetings and speaking engagements, was canceled.
President Trump posted on Twitter on January 29th, “Christians in the Middle-East have been executed in large numbers. We cannot allow this horror to continue!” He is right, we cannot allow the persecution to continue. But our Sunni Muslim “allies” such as Saudi Arabia want all Christians removed from the Middle East. That is a dilemma for President Trump.
The President is right that there are no good records for many of the refugees being sent to the United States by the United Nations High Commissioner of Refugees. All vetting is done by the UNHCR. In Jordan and Turkey, the UNHCR is run by a staff of Sunni Muslims. All interviews and investigations are done by Sunni Muslims. The result is 97% of refugees from Syria were Sunni Muslim and less than 1% Christian.
Most of the Sunni Muslims the UNHCR approved had no passports, no birth records, no marriage licenses. The “vetting” was done by interview. Once records are sent to the American Embassy the FBI takes over. In testimony before Congress FBI Director Comey said this: “we can query our database until the cows come home but we are not going to — there will be nothing show up because we have no record on that person.” In other words, many records have been destroyed in war and are not available.
President Trump did the right thing to begin “extreme vetting,” but many Iraqis coming to the United States to do business and to be part of ministries are not refugees and have had extensive background checks done by our Embassy, not by the UNHCR.
While I agree with President Trump for the need for “extreme vetting,” his executive order was rushed, poorly written and poorly executed. As a result, it was easy for a court to overturn it. Now a flood of refugees can be let in by “Obama holdovers.” Few of President Trump’s vacancies are filled and so Obama appointees are still running much of the government. It will be that way until at least June or July, when his Cabinet members can take full control.
We must control our borders and stop terrorists from arriving, but those in Christian ministries, the very ones the President wants to help, should not be turned back.
Diaper delivery set for Next Month in Iraq
The need is greater than we can fill: I really wanted to expand the Diapers for Refugees program in 2017 but for now we are staying with our initial program of delivering 160,000 diapers every three months to Christian refugees families with infants in the Erbil area.
The program is filling the needs of about 300 families. Tight records are kept by our ministry partner. With the help of refugee camp leaders, a list is maintained of every family with a child needing diapers. On that list is the name of the parents; the name of the child or children; the age of the child or children; the village they came from; and the number of the caravan they have been assigned to live in.
I watched the process when I was there in December. Our diaper deliveries are conducted in March, June, September and December. Because of that schedule, I was present for diaper distribution while there for the Christmas for Refugees events held for the older children.
During one of my visits to a refugee center, I saw two young children dressed in red and white for Christmas carrying home diapers for their mother who is to the left behind them in the photo at right. Parents do their best to try to make Christmas normal for their children.
The families try hard and the men who are still with their families look for work every day or volunteer for ministry work. These are hardworking, caring Christian people. Given the chance the Christians of Iraq will rebuild as they have every time since 638 when Muslims first invaded and destroyed their homes and churches.
Women’s personal needs: One area I have wanted to expand the Diapers for Refugees program in was to help with women’s feminine pads. This is a taboo subject in the Middle East and as a result there is a great need.
As part of the Christmas for Refugees program the family of every child who participated received a large box or heavy plastic bag of hygiene materials in December. In with the soaps, shampoos, disinfectants, laundry soaps and other supplies were feminine pads. Some of the women visibly cried when they saw what they were getting.
At some point, funds permitting, I want to add feminine products as a part of the Diapers for Refugees program. This is just the second year of the program and we do not want to expand too fast, particularly in an unpredictable year of a brand-new presidency.
Please pray with me for the Lord to guide us how best to help the persecuted Christians of the Middle East.
William J. Murray, Chairman
Religious Freedom Coalition, 601 Pennsylvania Ave. NW #900, Washington, DC 20004 * (202) 742-8990