US restrictions on visa-free travel ‘scapegoats countries, not stops terrorism’

© Mariana Bazo
By passing a bill intended to strengthen the Visa Waiver Program, the US doesn’t seek to stop terrorism, but to scapegoat particular countries, says Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich, writer and independent researcher.

RT: People in the US have been concerned over possible terror threats for a long time. Why do you think the House is rushed to pass this legislation with such tight restrictions now?

Soraya Sepahpour-Ulrich:  This visa waiver bill has so many implications – it is hard to know where to start. But frankly, it is a sort at bigotry, I think the House is trying to follow in Trump’s footsteps and appeal to the masses who are bigots and who don’t understand what is going on. But basically, it is pinpointing four countries: Iran, Iraq, Syria and Sudan. And by doing so, it is equating those countries to terrorism and ISIL. [Apart from Sudan], these are three countries along with Russia that are fighting ISIL. So, on the one hand, the US is saying that it fears ISIL and doesn’t want terrorism here, yet, knowing what the journalists have said that the Saudi Arabians are aiding the radicals, the US itself has said that the oil sales are going through Turkey and yet it is Iran and Syria and Iraq that are being victimized here.

RT: Taking into consideration the range of terror threats the US faces today, was the waiver program a priority?

SSU: Frankly, many don’t even believe that these threats are well-founded. And the US thrives on fear, on having people beholden to fear. And so, as long as the American people are afraid and they fear terrorism or likewise, then the government has a free hand to do whatever it wants. And I have mentioned this before many times in different interviews that the biggest threat to the US is the internet because the internet enables people to communicate and alert each other. As for the government lies and all the false flags, if you think about the implications of this bill, how will journalists who are European or who are part of this visa waiver program who have got to these countries - how will they be dealt with? How about all the…people that flocked to Iran in the hopes of the Joint [Comprehensive] Plan of Action being implemented…- how will they come to the US, how will they filter people out?

Abayomi Azikiwe, the editor of the Pan-African news wire, told RT: “We are up against an election year… So, each political party is trying to prepare itself to face an electorate that’s already been whipped into frenzy in regard to the purported threat of terrorism. And terrorism becomes a code word for Islamic extremism. Also, the US wants to escalate its intervention in both Iraq and Syria. It has been doing this over the last several months. So, in order to provide the political ground work for this inevitable escalation of US military involvement in these areas, they have to create an image of an imminent threat being carried out by Islamic extremist organizations. Many of these organizations, of course, were funded, coordinated and also provided with political cover by the US as well as other members of the NATO which is in essence is run by the US.”

RT: Do you think that they are playing on this fear? Do you think they should be prioritizing something?

SSU: I think they should be prioritizing, if they are sincere, they are not sincere, even a Pentagon official has said that United States was behind the creation of ISIL, General Flynn, said we know that it is behind it but they are not stopping, they are not serious in their fight against it, because as long as there are terrorists in a given place - and often have been backed by the US just as the Taliban was and the Mujahedeen - then the US and its allies can deploy boots. They have no interest in stopping terrorism but they do have an interest in scapegoating particular countries…

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.