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Two rebuttals to some of Dr Pipes' criticisms of Trump's extreme vetting, round two.

Reader comment on item: Another Attempt at "Extreme Vetting"

Submitted by Stu Fagin (United States), Apr 5, 2017 at 22:01

Dr Pipes comments are always a great springboard for debate. What follows are challenges to two of his points:

(1) "....some Iranians are friends and some Canadians are enemies. Looking at countries is crude and ineffective."......Given that vetting resources are limited, it is reasonable to use country of origin as a significant factor in considering entry of particular individuals. This is particularly so for nations so dysfunctional that their internal security offers little help in assessing their citizen applicants, such as Yemen. The more so, for nations whose internal security interests are actually inimical to our own, such as Iran. Is it reasonable to assert that an applicant from Iran does not deserve more scrutiny than an applicant form Canada? Looking at the individual's country does not mean you are not looking at the individual as well.

(2) "But this emphasis on electronics, especially mobile phones, won't work"............It is surely true that the brighter terrorist would wipe call data, as Pipes suggests. However, many terrorists are dim bulbs. After all, what level of intellect is required to drive a large truck into a large crowd? There would be a justified outcry if one of the dim bulbs enters our country and commits such an act, if it were later revealed that a simple check of his cell phone data would have exposed and denied him entry. Moreover, in the case of the brighter terrorist, a cell phone with a wiped call history should raise suspicions. A thorough security check involves running many traps; even those that adept terrorists are likely to circumvent. We should certainly look at the cell phone call histories.


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Daniel Pipes replies:

1. If resources are so limited, the U.S. government is not protecting the citizenry. I want an increase in resources to do the job properly.

2. I don't know about you, but I am not willing to hand over the information on my iPhone to some policeman. I suspect many others feel the same and would take steps to avoid this.

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