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Brits Offer Asylum to Taliban Fighter By: Alexis Amory and Michael P. Tremoglie
FrontPageMagazine.com | Tuesday, February 04, 2003


London's Sunday Telegraph has disclosed that the British have granted an unidentified Taliban soldier political asylum on the grounds that he fears persecution from the Western-supported Afghan government. British immigration attorneys - who have obviously patterned themselves after American immigration attorneys - announced that the UK Home Office has granted permission for a Taliban fighter to remain in Britain because he fears he might be targeted by the new, pro-democracy government in Afghanistan. This Taliban was a trained, armed soldier engaged in killing, or attempting to kill, British and American troops during the liberation of Afghanistan. Now the elected government that ordered those troops to fight and possibly die has given this "refugee" permission to stay in Britain because he fears the very government America and Britain put in place.

The legendary perspicacity of the British has gone somewhat awry here. If anyone thought American liberals were delusional, at least none thought John Walker Lindh should have been granted asylum, and Britain's "shoe bomber" has just been banged up in the U.S. for 180 years with no parole. In Britain, they would probably have sent him to have tea with the Queen, who was forced, at the behest of Tony Blair, to endure a state dinner with Syria's terrorist-sponsoring President Hassan.

The Sunday Telegraph reported, "Hanif Bhamjee, a lawyer at Crowley & Co, the Cardiff-based solicitors who represented the fighter, would not give any details that might identify the man but said that he had sustained bullet wounds to his limbs while fighting for the Taliban…he had fled the country and made his way to Britain. He was granted asylum last May while living in Cardiff and has since left, possibly for Birmingham. It is understood that he received legal aid." Legal aid is paid for out of tax revenues, some of those taxes paid by the parents and wives of the troops this brave Taliban (who has wisely chosen not to be identified) tried to kill.

Not all Brits are happy with this. Some are outraged. Conservatives in the Welsh Assembly intend to complain to the Secretary of the Home Office, David Blunkett. However, it seems that Blunkett is more concerned with maintaining his interpretation of the European Convention of Human Rights than he is about common sense or the safety and security of British soldiers and his fellow citizens. Blunkett said that he had rejected Tory calls for the European Convention on Human Rights to be derogated by Britain to allow all asylum seekers to be detained. The Telegraph quoted Blunkett as saying, "It is not practical - it would take five years and cost £2 billion. I am not prepared to countenance a denunciation of all immigrants and asylum seekers. I am going to stand up and be counted on that."

Oh, how the corridors of power must have rung with those words! However, a word in Mr. Blunkett's self-righteous ear: No one is asking you to denounce ALL immigrants and asylum seekers. We do ask that you not sanction those who are Britain's declared enemies. Setting up a straw man to fight is the coward's way out of an argument. Employing New Labor government reasoning (New Labor, new logic), Washington, Adams, and Jefferson could have applied for asylum in Britain if they had lost the War of Independence.

Currently, another Taliban fighter has reportedly approached a Welsh Labour MP for help with his application for "asylum." Doubtless, he will get all the help he needs to settle in comfortably in public housing until he identifies a mosque where they learn how to make bombs and ricin and get himself integrated into the terrorist community. British immigration lawyers are currently processing two more Taliban asylum applications. According to the Home Office, it is doing its best to be "equitable" to Taliban "refugees." The Office has issued a statement stating each asylum request will be considered on an individual case-by-case basis. Why? Why not issue a principled, blanket refusal for all Taliban fighters and immediately order their deportation into the loving arms of the Northern Alliance?

Obviously, the British soldier is prepared for every contingency except that of the actions of his civil servants. Rudyard Kipling once described the feelings of the average British private towards those in power in the military in a poem:

Well it’s Tommy this and Tommy that

And Tommy how’s your soul?

But it’s the thin red line of heroes

When the drums begin to roll

Well, the drums are beginning to roll. One wonders if the immigration lawyers, the immigration lobby, the British Labour Party, and Secretary Blunkett and the British Home Office are going to continue to place a higher value on harboring the enemy than on according the Armed Forces the respect and honor they deserve for defending their country. I wonder how many of the wives, mothers, fathers and siblings of those troops voted Labour in the last election. And how many will in the next election.

One has to wonder, too, whether this approach to the British border security will cross the pond to this side. Sadly, there are signs that it already has.

As reported by Chuck Muth, in Virginia, a Democrat state legislator sponsored a bill to provide illegal aliens the same lower in-state tuition rate as legal residents. A Washington Times editorial pointed out that military families stationed temporarily in Virginia must pay out-of-state tuition fees. Virginia’s Attorney General thinks illegal aliens should pay out-of-state tuition.

Illegal aliens should not be paying any school tuition at all, as they have no right to be here. Deportation could be effected swiftly (think Elian Gonzalez). The bleeding hearts would have a fury-fest, but the deed would be done. Then Virginia could subsidize tuition for the children of American military personnel, who are living in Virginia not by choice but because they were sent there.

In the meantime, the British wrestle with their political contradictions. Lucy, Mr. Blunkett's celebrated guide dog, has just recently retired. We suggest Mr. Blunkett may wish, as was his custom for many years, to follow her.




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