Navy Veteran Doyle Hodges to Governor Christie: Policy on Syrian Refugees Helps ISIS

By Joe Jenkins

In May 2016, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie announced that the state would no longer participate in the Office of Health and Human Services refugee resettlement program. Christie had previously declared that the United States should not welcome any refugees, including young orphaned children.

Veterans for American Ideals member Doyle Hodges responded in the NJ Star Ledger: “This is bad policy. Most importantly, it runs counter to our values. It also feeds ISIS propaganda, and undermines U.S. attempts to counter that propaganda.”

Hodges, who served 21 years in the Navy, argues that America’s strength is its commitment—inscribed on the Statue of Liberty—to welcoming the poor, vulnerable, and persecuted, and ensuring that they have freedom and opportunity. To turn from that would be to turn from the foundational values that make the United States a beacon to the rest of the world.

It would also, Hodges argues, threaten our national security, by playing into ISIS propaganda that seeks to alienate Muslims from the West. Such propaganda has been critical to ISIS’s ability to attract new recruits and spread globally.

Read Hodge’s call to Christie to restore New Jersey’s participation in the program here.

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Published on August 2, 2016

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