Much more to come tomorrow, but for tonight, some quick, bad news The AP reports:
The United States admitted only 362 Iraqi refugees in November, almost 100 fewer than in October, and far less than half the number it needs per month to meet a goal of 12,000 by the end of this budget year… In the first two months — October and November — of fiscal 2008, only 812 Iraqi refugees have been allowed into the country, meaning the Bush administration must now accept more than 11,000 over the coming 10 months to reach the target it has set for itself, the figures show.
This report comes on the heels of a November 29th briefing from the the State Department, in which Ambassador James Foley, Senior Coordinator on Iraqi Refugee Issues, said:
Finally, let me conclude with a comment about the goal I mentioned at the top; namely, to admit up to or at least 12,000 Iraqis refugees into the U.S. this fiscal year. I believe we are on track to achieving that goal, but we are not going to be in a position to substantiate that for a number of months to come. At present, we do not have enough — we do not have sufficient cases in the pipeline to generate more than perhaps several hundred arrivals per month. This is due largely to DHS’s absence from Damascus for virtually the past six months. Thanks though to this recent agreement, we now have indeed ambitious plans to interview Iraqis in the region during the second and third quarters of the fiscal year, and we believe this will result in arrivals of well over one thousand per month in later stages of the year.
Unfortunately, we have heard this story before…