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Posted on June 04, 2014 in Arab American Institute

  Making Iraqi American Voices Heard

The current situation in Iraq undoubtedly impacts members of our community here in the United States. Take a look at this viewpoint from Iraqi American Majid al-Bahadli in the New York Times.

If you are an Iraqi American who is interested in talking to the press, please provide us with a short one-line bio, your current city and state, and a brief response (150-200 words) to this:

“How should the United States respond to the current crisis in Iraq?”

AAI will post responses on our website...

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Join Us in Celebrating the First Annual Immigrant Heritage Month this June!

Posted by on June 02, 2014 in Blog

Today marks the beginning of the first ever Immigrant Heritage Month, a nationwide effort to share people’s stories of immigration in America. Our community, like many others, is proud of our ethnic heritage and together we can highlight narratives of Arab Americans who have contributed so much to so many aspects of America.

Immigrant Heritage Month (IHM), an initiative spearheaded by Welcome.us, is an important platform to join many other immigrant communities to underscore how our country’s heritage is built on the diversity and contributions of immigrants. Our combined, coordinated voices can be a...

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Factoring in the ENLIST Act and Comprehensive Immigration Reform

Posted by on May 27, 2014 in Blog
By Jad Ireifej Summer Intern, 2014 Rep. Jeff Denham’s (CA-10) ENLIST Act was effectively blocked as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) last week when Eric Cantor said it would not be included in this must-pass defense budget bill. The ENLIST Act, which provides a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who entered the United States before the age of 15, so-called “DREAMers,” and served honorably in the military, was considered an inappropriate addition to the Defense budget by the House Majority Leader.
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Victories, Defeat, and Victory in Defeat

Posted on May 20, 2014 in Countdown
Arab American House Representative Justin Amash is making a big move to try to squash funding for the NSA’s intrusive intelligence programs. In a preemptive measure to ensure the government surveillance reform bill, the USA Freedom Act, gets its due consideration, Amash filed two amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) yesterday which include critical sections of the USA Freedom Act.
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Congressional Issues on Congressional Issues (And More)

Posted on May 15, 2014 in Countdown
We’ve long covered Arab-baiting in U.S. politics and campaigns and we will continue to do so as long as members of Congress keep finding ways to inject racism against Arab Americans into political discourse. This time, we bring you an attack from Rep. Devin Nunes (CA 22), who called Arab American Congressman and fellow Republican Justin Amash (MI 3) “Al Qaeda’s best friend in Congress” this week after an intra-party disagreement over U.S. surveillance programs and other legislation backed by Nunes.
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Arab American, Nahla Kayali, Honored by White House as “Champion of Change”

Posted by on March 28, 2014 in Blog

Nahla Kayali has an incredible story. A first generation Palestinian immigrant who came to the U.S. from Syria, she first came to the U.S. when she was 16 shortly after getting married. Today, Nahla has earned herself a prestigious recognition from the White House as one of the Cesar E. Chavez “Champions of Change.”

Nahla jokes about having learned English while watching American soap operas, but she learned the language well enough to teach it to other immigrants, and community service soon became her life passion. She founded...

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Damon Shadid Looks to Make History as First Arab American Seattle Municipal Court Judge

Posted by on February 13, 2014 in Blog

If elected in November, Seattle attorney and community leader Damon Shadid will become the first Arab American to serve as Seattle Municipal Court Judge. The brother of late Arab American and Pulitzer Prize-winning Journalist Anthony Shadid, Damon Shadid is proud of his Lebanese heritage and touts how his background has shaped his passion for serving poor and under privileged communities on his campaign website. It was Anthony’s sacrifice and courage, as well as Damon’s own commitment to bridging the gap between the judicial system and Seattle’s diverse community that have inspired him to pursue a position...

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Three Strikes, No Outs

Posted on February 05, 2014 in Countdown
Talk of the demise of what is easily rated as one of Washington’s most prominent lobby groups is nothing new and not surprisingly untrue. However, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee has swung and missed on three issues they have been publicly pushing for over the past year. First, U.S. public opposition and Obama’s reversal of military involvement in Syria succeeded in trumping AIPAC’s calls for U.S. missile strikes.
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The Principle Obstacle to Immigration Reform

Posted by on February 04, 2014 in Blog
By Firas Suqi Spring Intern, 2014 Immigration is one of the few issues that both Democrats and Republicans publicly agree is in need of urgent action. While both parties have reached the conclusion that something needs to be done about immigration, the number of successful resolutions addressing immigration reform has continually evaded the agenda of Republican lawmakers over the last few years. This issue has affected separated Arab American families, who continue to wait in anticipation that immigration reform will grant visas to their family members and loved ones overseas.
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Statement by AAI President James Zogby on Obama’s State of The Union Address

Posted by on January 29, 2014 in Blog
This President has faced unprecedented challenges from a Congress that would not work with him to address critical issues at home and abroad. Given this context, I am proud that he didn't back down on his values and his commitments. The President took a strong stand on closing the income gap and insuring equal pay for women. He reaffirmed his commitment to fight for comprehensive immigration reform, made a clear case demonstrating how the ACA was working and has already benefited millions of Americans, and pressed Congress to close Guantanamo and support foreign policy initiatives that emphasize negotiations over confrontation.
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