Fareed Zakaria: Trump's 'Muslim Ban' Destroys America's Reputation As A Beacon Of Hope


CNN's Fareed Zakaria gives his take on why Trump's executive order on immigration is "fear mongering" that risks destroying the US's reputation as a beacon of hope.

FAREED ZAKARIA: Donald Trump's executive order suspending the entry of Syrian refugees and of anyone from seven Muslim countries is filled with requests for reports and information.

The Department of Homeland Security and the State Department are asked to provide information on the numbers of foreign terrorists and then progress reports of the policy within between one and three months.

Let me save the government some money and offer up the data right now.

Alex Nowrasteh of the CATO Institute, a conservative think tank, has tallied the number of Americans killed by citizens of the seven countries banned, from 1975 to 2015. They are as follows:

Iraq - zero, Iran -zero, Syria - zero, Yemen - zero, Libya - zero, Somalia - zero, Sudan - zero.

Incidentally, that number for Saudi Arabia is 2,369, for the UAE is 314, for Egypt is 162, according to CATO.

Why certain countries are on or off this list is truly mysterious and some newspapers have noted that none of the Muslim majority countries that have a Trump hotel, building or office are on the list.

More broadly CATO's Nowrasteh points out that including 9/11, the chance of an American being killed by foreign terrorist on U.S soil over that 41-year period is 1 in 3.6 million per year, and by a refugee is 1 in 3.64 billion per year.

So there is really no rational basis for this ban.

What explains it then?

I suppose it is what has explained so much of Donald Trump's political career - the exploitation of fear.

From the birther campaign to the talk of Mexican rapists, Trump has always trafficked in fear mongering.

This time, to stoke those fears and present himself as the country's protector he chose to punish ordinary men, women and children who are fleeing terrorism and violence who are willing to brave the odds, bear the hardships, and separate from family and home - all to come to America.

These people are the roadkill of Trump's posturing.

But something else is being destroyed along with it - the image, reputation and goodwill of the United States of America as the beacon of the world.

As someone noted over the last few days. Donald Trump seems to want to turn off that lamp on the statue of liberty.

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