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Politico: American Muslim Officials Huddle on Ways to Survive Trump

Image: Politico: American Muslim Officials Huddle on Ways to Survive Trump

(AP)

By    |   Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016 11:57 AM

Muslim-Americans in government fear for their careers and their futures with incoming president Donald Trump in the White House, spurring informal meetings on how to protect themselves from anti-Muslim persecution.

"I feel apprehensive," a Muslim intelligence official told Politico. "I fear that — whatever white power movement or equivalent all of a sudden feels empowered by the president-elect, whatever tidbits of that community make their way into government — at the most basic level people who are brown, Middle Eastern, Muslim or Sikh or whatever will either be looked at with a lens of suspicion or concern, or something more overt may take place."

According to Politico, many working in U.S. intelligence worry that Trump's rhetoric will undermine their relationship with Middle East countries.

"My initial reaction was, 'Oh my God, should we quit and leave?'" said a State Department official of Muslim descent who asked for anonymity out of fear of angering the new administration.

"People are still struggling to understand what it means right now. Does it make sense to stay on board? Do you wait to see what the policies are going to be? I just feel like it's completely mysterious how this is going to work out."

During the campaign, Trump called for a ban on Muslims from entering the country, and for a registry of any immigrants from Muslim countries. Such actions could make it more difficult for government agencies like the CIA.

One former senior operations manager told Politico, "a lot of times when you hear 'We need more diversity,' that's political correctness, but in the agency that's the lifeblood. I think Trump's rhetoric is going to have a real chilling effect for people who are contemplating work in the intel communities if they are Muslim or ethnically tied to that part of the world."

"Inside the CIA or in the intel world, you've got this concept of a hard target," he continued. "It might be easy to recruit Guatemalans. But if you're talking about Russians, Chinese, North Koreans, those are hard targets, and now you could add people in the Muslim world as well," he said.

President Barack Obama issued a presidential memorandum in October requiring national security agencies to make a greater effort to promote diversity, Politico reports.

One State Department official of Muslim heritage worries that Trump's remarks and policies could deeply insult U.S. allies in Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

"I wouldn't probably have felt this [way] if it was President Mitt Romney or President John McCain," said the official. "It's still on the spectrum, for lack of a better word. This is completely unknown."

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Muslim-Americans in government fear for their careers and their futures with incoming president Donald Trump in the White House, spurring informal meetings on how to protect themselves from anti-Muslim persecution.
muslim, officials, survive, trump
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2016-57-30
Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016 11:57 AM
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