#Yalla2016 Day 1: The U.S. Looks at the Refugee Crisis

Posted by Kristin McCarthy on October 26, 2015 in Blog

The Arab American Institute kicked off its National Leadership Conference in Dearborn, Michigan with a day of programming that underscored the need for the United States to resettle more Syrian refugees and do more to alleviate the humanitarian disaster unfolding in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, and across the Middle East.

The program started with a video message from U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) about his work on policies impacting Syrian refugees, which was played for the conference attendees to...

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The Debate We Have, the Debate We Need

Posted on October 19, 2015 in Washington Watch
Since the end of the Vietnam War, every US president has been consumed with and defined by events in the Middle East.
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Pennsylvania Leaders Take a Stand Against Bigotry at Arab American Advocacy Day

Posted by Joan Hanna on October 14, 2015 in Blog

On September 30th, AAI and the Philadelphia Arab American Development Corporation convened at the State Capitol in Harrisburg, PA for an Arab American Advocacy Day. The day of advocacy focused on a campaign spearheaded by AAI: the Pennsylvania Accountability Project, as well as other community issues, including the Syrian refugee crisis and increasing the Arab American vote by having Pennsylvania’s new online voter registration page translated into Arabic. This initiative aims to fight anti-Arab and anti-Muslim bigotry at the state and local levels of government in Pennsylvania. Two AAI staff members...

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Responding to the Challenge of Russia in Syria

Posted on October 10, 2015 in Washington Watch
No one should have been surprised that Russia committed their military to the task of saving their ally in Syria from defeat.
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Countdown Vol. 13 No. 33: Tough Week

Posted on October 08, 2015 in Countdown
This week on Countdown: Responding to mass shootings, back to the Palestinians, Russia in Syria, voting rights in AL, and more
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The U.S. Refugee Vetting Process

Posted by Rawan Elbaba on October 01, 2015 in Blog
Secretary of State John Kerry announced that the United States would take in 85,000 refugees in the new fiscal year beginning October 1, and 100,000 next year. However, Obama’s decision to admit at least 10,000 Syrian refugees within the next year is meeting sharp criticism from current Presidential candidates and some members of Congress. Republican candidate Huckabee has recently come out with controversial comments about “opening the flood gates” for Syrian refugees who could be some of the “most violent and vicious people on Earth.” Other Republican candidates like Carson and Walker also bend the truth on the danger of allowing Syrian refugees into the country in opposition to Obama’s decision. Carson argues that the majority of Syrian refugees are young males who could be “infiltrated by terrorists.” The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, however, has data to suggest that 50.5% of refugees are women, 6.5% are males aged 12 to 17, and 51.1% are refugees under the age of 17 (38.5% of which are younger than 12 years old).
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Rethinking Syria

Posted by Eddie Bejarano on September 23, 2015 in Blog

“The central problem in Syria is that Sunni Arabs will not be willing partners against the Islamic State unless we commit to protect them and the broader Syrian population against all enemies, not just ISIS,” according to former Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and military officer Gen. David Petreaus. Gen. Petreaus made this assertion, among others, during a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on U.S. policy in the Middle East on September 22, 2015. In his first public appearance on Capitol Hill since disclosing classified information during his...

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Snapshots: American Citizens Discriminated Against at the Israeli Border

Posted by Arab American Institute on September 23, 2015 in Blog
Snapshots: American Citizens Discriminated Against at the Israeli Border The Arab American Institute is collecting stories of American citizens who have been harassed, detained, or deported when attempting to enter Israel or Palestine. Here are some of the stories we've collected.
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Over 100 Organizations Call on U.S. to Accept 100,000 Syrian Refugees

Posted by Nadia Aziz on September 18, 2015 in Blog

The Arab American Institute joined over 100 organizations in signing a letter to President Obama calling for the United States to accept 200,000 refugees in Fiscal Year 2016, including 100,000 Syrian refugees. The letter calls on the US to show solidarity with our close allies in Europe and to continue to increase the amount the US gives in response to the humanitarian crisis.

In stark contrast to the 10,000 Syrian refugees that the White House announced earlier this month, and the 65,000 Syrian refugees that Presidential candidate Governor O’Malley...

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Properly Recognizing Salman Hamdani

Posted by Eddie Bejarano on September 16, 2015 in Blog

The story of Mohamed Salman Hamdani, a 23-year-old NYPD cadet and 9/11 first responder who lost his life at the World Trade Center, is well known to many in our community. To this day, Hamdani, a first generation American Muslim from Pakistan, is not listed at the 9/11 memorial honoring first responders, despite making the ultimate sacrifice in service of his fellow citizens. Salman Hamdani deserves to be recognized among the other 9/11 first responders who valiantly ran towards disaster. Hamdani epitomized what it means to be a hero – and he should be recognized alongside and in...

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