Friday Readings

The Curious Case Of Sister Diana
Nina Shea of the Hudson Institute writes about the peculiar case of Sister Diana Momeka of the Dominican Sisters of Saint Catherine of Siena, who this week was denied a visa to enter the U.S. by the State Department.

What makes State’s actions odd is that despite being a representative of the Iraq’s Nineveh Christians, many of whom have died at the hands of ISIS, she was refused entry while every member of an Iraqi delegation of minority groups were granted visas. She was the lone Christian in the delegation.

Shea reports that she was told by the State Department the reason was she was “not able to demonstrate that your intended activities in the United States would be consistent with the classification of the visa.”

She notes Sister Diana received endorsements from the Institute for Global Engagement and former congressman Frank Wolf’s (R., Va.) 21st Century Wilberforce Initiative and from Representative Anna Eshoo (D., Calif.).

“The State Department wasn’t buying. It either thought that they were all in on a scheme by the nun or that Sister Diana was plotting to deceive her well-placed friends and supporters, as well as the U.S. government,” Shea adds.

The State Department would not comment on the case, but The Washington Times suggests that because she is considered a refugee in Iraq, she may have been unable to meet tougher standards that applicants who cannot cite a permanent home in their own country typically face.

How Young Vietnamese View The Fall Of Saigon
Elizabeth Rosen of The Atlantic interviews members of the youngest generation of Vietnamese on how they view the war and the fall of Saigon which signaled the end of the Vietnam War 40 years ago. What she found was a group of individuals who care less about ideologies and political philosophies as they do about the ability of leaders to meet their present needs.

Middle East Stability – Does It Matter?
Hillel Fradkin and Lewis Libby, both Hudson Institute scholars, examine the notion, which has become virtually unquestionable in some circles, that the key to stability in the Middle East is the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

They disagree, asserting that the roots of instability is not in reaching an agreement on the status of Palestinians but in the more recent uprisings that were spawned during the Arab Spring.

“But this notion—of the centrality of the Israeli-Palestinian dispute—is particularly misleading and unhelpful in the present era. To be sure, the Middle East is awash in conflicts: on the one hand, a multiplicity of civil wars (Syria, Iraq, Libya, Yemen); on the other, engagement by the likes of Iran, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and other Gulf states in these wars through their support of one side or another, or even of multiple sides.

“The proximate cause of every one of the present conflicts is the Arab revolts of 2011 and their aftermath. At the level of each country, all of these civil wars largely—though not exclusively—pit Arabs against Arabs,” the pair argue.


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