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Immigration Daily April 21, 2003
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Editor's Comments

Results In For FBI Interviews

According to reports by UPI and Fox News, an FBI taskforce has concluded about 10,000 to 11,000 interviews with people of Iraqi origin in the US. The goals of the FBI task force were threefold: "to identify threats both at home and abroad from Iraqis within the United States from the interview process; to expel or arrest all known Iraqi intelligence officials in the United States, including those with diplomatic status; and to deal with counter-terrorism threats that may have increased during Operation Iraqi Freedom ... The interviews instead produced important information for U.S. forces, including locations of Iraqi bunkers, tunnel systems, manufacturing plants and military installations [(about 250 reports to the US military)]. (Fox News)" Also, "no known terrorists or Iraqi spies were discovered in the interviews (Fox News)" - no surprise there for readers of Immigration Daily.
"[S]everal dozen were detained for visa violations" and "[Attorney General] Ashcroft said that - in addition to gathering intelligence - the interviews were aimed at 'identify(ing) backlash threats to Iraqis in the United States.' He said that every interviewee had been reminded that discrimination and harassment was unlawful and that 36 new cases had been opened by Justice Department civil rights lawyers as a result of information received from interviewees. (UPI)" So, apart from producing some information of limited value to our military effort, thousands of interviews "conducted by hundreds of FBI agents" resulted in what? A few dozen visa violations and a few dozen civil rights violations? We doubt if senior management at the FBI will view that as a productive use of resources to be repeated in the future. There is also something hidden here in the numbers - about 10,000 interviews apparently produced only a few dozen visa violators - a result likely impossible, unless the FBI interviewers looked the other way for technical visa violations. If that was the case, and it appears from the numbers that it was, we commend the FBI for heeding the call of common sense and focusing on the anti-terrorist mission without setting off on a wild-goose chase for undocumented Iraqi dishwashers. The anti-immigrationists may view hounding the undocumented as a good use of our nation's resources, but we, and apparently the FBI too, do not share that view. On a related point, we have noted before that the victims of the new governmental powers will likely be on the extreme right - and sure enough, the Fox report concludes with "concerns about other forms of terror, including those from anti-government and right-wing extremists."


Curriculum For Labor Cert Phone Seminar

Seasoned practitioners of the art and science of labor certification know that we immigration lawyers face the toughest times in our collective memory:

  • Industry and employer layoffs have made Reduction in Recruitment a burdensome and seemingly snail-paced process.
  • Regional variations in policies and practices among the several Certifying Officers can trip up even the most accomplished immigration lawyers.
  • The lack of agency funding and the still-to-be processed 245(i) cases have created backlogs in standard and RIR cases for as far as the eye can see.
  • New legislation allowing H-1B extensions beyond six years cause us to puzzle over the choice of RIR or standard labor certification.
  • Against this backdrop, we fret over the as-yet unpublished PERM final rule. The latest predictions from the Labor Department are that a final or interim final PERM rule will be published in July and effective by October, 2003.
  • How can practitioners best prepare cases in the current economic environment?
  • How should we gear up for PERM?

Topics will include:

  1. Prevailing Wage issues:
    • Level 1/Level 2 and jobs in the mid-level range
    • Area of intended employment
    • Crosswalk and Reverse Crosswalk Issues and the grouping of DOT positions as transferred to the OES
    • Applying the TEGL: Perspectives of the Regions, SWAs and practicing attorneys

  2. RIR Issues:
    • Differences between the SWA and the Region
    • Labor certifications for IT jobs: Myth or Reality?
    • Aftermath in the Regions of the Ziegler I and II memoranda involving layoffs in the industry or by the sponsoring employer
    • Employer burdens in responding to the flood of resumes from unqualified applicants, and the resultant extra work in preparing the recruitment report: How much detail is required?

  3. Backlog reduction measures:
    • What steps are the Regions and the SWAs taking in advance of the PERM rollout?

  4. The PERM Rollout:
    • What's going to happen and when?
    • What will happen to related occupations?
    • What will happen to university degree requirements for certain positions involving a combination of education and experience?
    • How will Schedule A be affected?
    • Will business necessity survive?

  5. Potpourri of other issues:
    • The status of "Or equivalent" today after Chintakuntla
    • Inconsistencies among adjudicators in the same Region
    • Increased NOFs at some Regions.

For more info on this phone seminar series, including detailed curriculum, speaker bios, and registration information, please see:
For all the above by fax, please see:

Featured Article

From The Beginning: Agile Immigration Advocacy For New Businesses: Part 2 of 3
Susan K. Wehrer and Angelo A. Paparelli write "Once the new venture is sufficiently off the ground, the next step is finding an appropriate nonimmigrant visa classification for the founder or other prospective key employees."

Race, Nationality, and Reality: INS Administration of Racial Provisions in US Immigration and Nationality Law Since 1898, Part 1 of 8
Marian L. Smith writes "The history of US immigration and nationality law demonstrates how race became a factor in determining who could come to America and who could not."

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Immigration Law News

Congressional Testimony On DHS's Immigration Interior Enforcement Strategy
Several individuals testified before the Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security and Claims, Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives on BICE's interior enforcement strategy: General Accounting Office, Director of Homeland Security and Justice Issues, Rich Stana; Undersecretary Border and Transportation Security Hutchinson; Executive Director Center for Immigration Studies, Mark Krikorian; and Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA), Timothy Danahey.

2nd Circuit Vacates BIA's Dismissal Of Petitioner's Forced Sterilization Claim
In Qiu v. Ashcroft, No. 00-4264 (2nd Cir. Apr. 16, 2003), the court said that both "the Immigration Judge and the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) had no leeway to deny Petitioner's application based on China's coercive program of population control without first (a) pointing to specific pieces of missing, relevant documentation, and (b) showing that this documentation was reasonably available to Petitioner."

558 Qualify Under Convention Against Torture, Lowest Acceptance Rate Since Convention Against Torture Adopted
The Bucks County Courier Times reports "Last year, immigration judges rejected a record 16,744 claims by foreigners who said they would be tortured if forced to return to their home countries, according to the Executive Office of Immigration Review, part of the Department of Justice."

FBI Wraps Up Interviews With 10,000 Iraqis Living In US
United Press International reports "Jean Abinader, of the Arab-American Institute, a Washington-based research organization, said that his group was aware of at least 100 complaints [related to FBI intelligence interviews], mainly concerning people being told they could not bring a lawyer, or being asked about their visa status, but pointed out that this number was still a very small proportion of the 10,000 interviews."

Reality Of Visa Eligibility Has Only Changed Slightly Since 9/11
The DOS International Information Programs reports "Secure borders" and "open doors", two goals of US visa policy, are not mutually exclusive, according to Maura Harty, Assistant Secretary for Consular Affairs at the Department of State."

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Credential Evaluation And Translation Service
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Letters to the Editor

Dear Editor:
Since the publication of my article, "Group 4 Special Registration Deadline And Other Developments Since The War", a BICE official informed me on April 16, 2003 that an individual subject to Group 4 call-in Special Registration does not have to register under that Group's extended deadline if he departs the US prior to April 25, 2003. This was not reflected in the Federal Register notice that extended the Group 4 deadline to April 25, as pointed out in the article, but it is in a notice on the BCIS website, subjecting citizens or nationals of Group 4 countries to registration if they "will remain in the United States at least until April 25, 2003."It is still not clear whether persons who depart on April 25 must register.

Cyrus Mehta

Dear Editor:
The substantive issues, statistics and questions raised in Ali Alexander's letter of 4/17 are not diminished by the peripheral responses of his three critics of 3/18. In particular, attempts to confine the immigration debate only to those in the profession and to favored topics is obtuse and snobbish. Immigration is not the sole province of attorneys or immigrants, but has a profound and irrevocable effect upon all of us. It would appear that most mass immigration advocates have no room for compromise and prefer no limits and little opposition. Many others reasonably believe that limits and tight controls must apply for a "cohesive" society. There is a great amount of opinion supporting the latter position which may be ignored in your own minds and/or group, but not in reality. To remain oblivious to the many obvious and negative aspects of the excessive and illegal immigration phenomenon we have experienced for too long is to be in severe denial or worse. It is limited and controlled immigration that has the potential of being beneficial, not the massive, uncontrolled and illegal variety.

R. L. Ranger

Dear Editor:
Ali Alexander's "facts" and argument regarding taxes paid by the immigrant population in the US simplistically rationalizes his belief without sufficient analysis of real facts. Mr. Ali before analysis clearly holds the opinion that aliens don't pay enough in taxes when measured against their raw numbers, which are questioned by Mr. Ali to begin with. And in bold brush strokes he concludes that if the total amount of tax and numbers of aliens so paying is less proportionally than the "US population", that means aliens are not pulling their own weight. This picture, while just facially logical removes the grays from the picture. If we know anything about complex issues like immigration and tax, it's that there's an awful lot of gray.

Alice M. Yardum-Hunter

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Editorial Advisory Board
Marc Ellis, Gary Endelman

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