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Resettlement Strain

Catching up with Burmese refugees in the U. S.; Also, a guide to Burma vs. Myanmar

Many news outlets, including CT, have covered the Department of Homeland Security's refusal to grant refugee status to anyone who gave "material support" to terrorists under the 2001 USA Patriot Act.

The law was riddled with problems: many who are seeking refugee status are doing so because they were forced to give ransoms and temporary housing at gunpoint.

And then there's the problem of governments that operate much like terrorist groups, including Myanmar's military junta. Chin Duh Kam, a Burmese pastor in America, told me about government officials forcing Christians in Chin State to make ropes and transport military equipment. The New York Times referred to another UN report that

3,000 villages of the Karen and nearby tribes have been destroyed, and more than 500,000 people have been driven from their homes. Government troops are accused of systematically raping girls and forcing children to join their ranks.

So the law's broad ban on everyone giving "material support" unfortunately ...

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