A sick Iraqi woman, who lived in America for 20 years, has died after being prevented from returning to the U.S. for medical treatment, her son blames President Trump.
Mike Hager speaking to Fox 2 Detroit revealed that he and his family fled Iraq during the Gulf War. According to him, after spending four years in a refugee camp, they were resettled in America in 1995. Hager said he returned back to his home country, serving with the U.S. Special Forces as well as an adviser and interpreter between 2003 and 2008. He was eventually made a U.S. citizen, while his family members were made legal residents, including his mother.
Hager and his loved ones had been living in America for years, traveling back and forth to visit family back in Iraq. The former serviceman said they had never had any problems with returning to the U.S. before. When his mother, Naimma fell sick in Iraq, Hager tried to bring the ailing 75-year-old woman back to the United States for medical treatment, but she and three other family members were not allowed to fly.
His mother died a day after she was told she could not return back to the United States, a place she had lived for 20 years.
Hager who runs a business in Metro Detroit said he was shocked that he was allowed through, but told that his mother, niece and two nephews had to remain in Iraq, despite holding green cards. Hager recalling the moment, he was pried away from his family, said his mother was very upset. According to Hager, his 75-year-old mother knew that an Iraqi hospital could not meet her needs and that she would die if she failed to return back to the U.S.
“I was just shocked. I had to put my mom back on the wheelchair and take her back and call the ambulance and she was very, very upset. She knew right there if we send her back to the hospital she’s going to pass away—she’s not going to make it.”
Hager, who was shot in the back during his service time in Iraq, says he is unsure when his niece and two nephews will be allowed to return to America. The former service man believes his mother would have survived if she was not denied entry back into the country. Hager blames President Trump for destroying his family.
“They destroyed us…I went with my family, I came back by myself. They destroyed my family. I really believe this in my heart: If they would have let us in, my mom—she would have made it and she would have been sitting here next to me. She’s gone because of President Trump.”
The executive order signed by President Trump prohibits travelers from Libya, Yemen, Somalia, Iran, Syria, Sudan, and Iraq from entering America for the next 90 days, so that individuals with extremist ties can be prevented from entering the United States. Despite being an American citizen, Hager says he is worried about the new development, wondering where he will go next, if he is no more welcome in the country he grew up in.
“This is our home. We’ve been here for too long, we’ve been here since we were kids. If I’m not wanted overseas in Iraq and I’m not wanted here, then where do I go? What am I supposed to do with my family?”
Hager’s story is just one of the painful fall-outs from the travel ban. According to the Independent, a five-year-old boy was detained for four hours and reportedly put in handcuffs after he was deemed a “security risk.”
The boy who is alleged to be a U.S. citizen born to an Iranian mother was detained alongside 100 people at Dulles International Airport, in Washington DC, following President Trump’s executive order. Sean Spicer, press secretary to the White House remained unapologetic over the incident, adding that to think someone of that age was not a threat was a wrong stance to take.
“To assume that just because of someone’s age and gender that they don’t pose a threat would be misguided and wrong.”
A Jan 30-31 poll conducted Tuesday showed that one in every two Americans backed the ban. The divisions were along party lines, according to Reuters. The Ipos/Reuters poll was conducted in English and in 50 states across America. The poll gathered responses from 1,201 people, 478 were Republicans and 453 were Democrats.
The poll confirmed that 49 percent of Americans agreed with the executive order while 41 percent disagreed. Some 51 percent of Republicans “strongly agree” with the order while 53 percent of Democrats “strongly disagree.” 31 percent admit that the ban makes them feel safe, 26 percent say it makes them feel less safe. The rest said it would not make any difference or did not know for sure.
[Featured Image by Branden Camp/AP Images]