Did You Know...


Not without my daughters (and son)

By See-Dubya  •  July 26, 2008 08:21 AM

Patrick Poole’s summary of the tragic case of Ashraf Al-Jailani and his three children, whom he refuses to return to their mother’s custody, makes for very uncomfortable reading. Actually, “tragic” isn’t the right word–so many of the actors have acted with either malice, complacency, cowardice, or naivety that the story reads like an infuriating farce. I’ve ended up feeling sympathy only for the three children who are being used as political pawns in this international fustercluck.

Al-Jailani was deported to Yemen in 2004. He was accused of domestic abuse in the home, and the children were taken out of the home. With the support of CAIR, al-Jailani’s wife pressed to have the children returned to her, and won. She took them on vacation to see their father in Yemen, and he decided (and was supported by Yemeni law) to keep them there and send his wife back to Ohio alone.

I certainly don’t feel any sympathy for the motley collection of far-left interest groups who made al-Jailani a poster boy for their anti-deportation crusade, and found themselves betrayed by Al-Jailani. Like the Gitmo lawyers who find themselves tapdancing around the fact that so many of their poor, misunderstood little lambs get sprung from US custody and return to the battlefield, I’ve long stopped giving these groups credit for noble intentions or good judgment.

I feel a great smoldering contempt for the Portage County, Ohio child welfare authorities who had recognized that Al-Jailani was an abuser, his wife was an enabler, and that the children needed to be removed from that environment. Under pressure from CAIR and their allies (as well as Al-Jailani’s wife), and threats of being branded Islamophobic, they knuckled under and overrode the assessment of the case worker who recognized the problem.

And though her position is a terrible one, Al-Jailani’s wife Michelle Swensen comes off like a naive and useless fool. She was a victim of abuse at his hands and was warned by the case worker that the children could be detained in Yemen, but she chose to stand by her violent, terror-linked man. Not only did she fight the county and allow herself to be used as a political prop by the anti-American Left, she naively ignored the county’s warnings and lost her children as a result.

Read it, and weep, and be sure to note this detail about the movement to fight Al-Jailani’s deportation:

Amazingly, it was those allegations of his connections to al-Qaeda that his supporters used to oppose his deportation, claiming that he would be tortured for his terrorist connections if he were returned to his native Yemen. Today Ashraf Al-Jailani is now a high-ranking Yemeni government official in the Ministry of Oil and Minerals — a previously unknown form of torture.

Wow, I never saw that one coming. I’ll bet Yemen-blogger Jane Novak is shocked, too.

More on the Al-Jailani children here.


{Post by See-Dubya. I talked about another of Patrick Poole’s investigations here.}