Diallo Must Be Deported 74


When I get home to Ramsgate next week I have the papers for two new political asylum cases waiting for me to study, one of them a bulky parcel from UPS for a case in the United States. I will peruse them carefully to see if they appear genuine, and if so prepare expert testimony. In most ordinary cases I do this free of any charge. If necessary I will go to the tribunals to give evidence. I have won a large number of cases, and indeed never lost a case at tribunal. I have saved two people from deportation at the last minute, one literally en route to the airport. One would almost certainly have been killed on arrival in Uzbekistan.

It has got harder. The popular outcry against asylum seekers, whipped up by the tabloid media, has resulted in political determination to restrict numbers, and that has filtered down through all aspects of the system. If there is one thing that makes it harder still, it is fraudulent asylum seekers. They do exist, as does benefit fraud. These liars and cheats open the way for the malicious to attack the entire system, and cast unfair doubt on the whole principle of providing help to the genuine needy. It is not nasty conservatives who are the root of the reaction against asylum seekers – they merely feed off it and exploit it to their own vicious ends. Those truly undermining the system are fraudulent asylum seekers.

Nafissato Diallo is a fraudulent asylum seeker, a fraudulent benefit claimant, a fraudulent tax declarer, a fraudulent public housing occupier, an associate of criminals and a probable receiver of proceeds of crime. She lied about being raped on her asylum application (for which she was professionally coached with a tape of her false story), she lied about how many children she had in order to receive more benefits, she lied about her income to receive public housing and to avoid tax, she lied about the receipt of very substantial sums of money into her bank account from known, indeed imprisoned, criminals.

I judge she most probably lied too about being raped by Dominique Strauss Kahn. We will never know for sure, trial or no trial. The Guardian has for the last few months been full of articles telling us that a woman may be a fraudulent asylum seeker, a benefit, tax and housing cheat and a criminal associate, but she can still be a rape victim. That is absolutely true.

But they fail to say the converse. A woman may be a rape victim, but she can still be a fraudulent asylum seeker, a benefit, tax and housing cheat and criminal associate. That is equally true and equally important.

In order to maintain public support for the asylum system, it is essential that it has integrity. If Diallo is not now deported, nobody can believe in that integrity.

Now criminal charges against DSK are being dropped, there is no need for her to remain. She does not need to be ordinarily resident in the US for her money-seeking lawyers to pursue a civil case.

An astonishing ignorance of Africa pervades the comments on this issue throughout most of the web. I have lived in or worked on Africa most of my career. We seldom see any of the postive side of Africa on TV. In fact almost the only time Africa appears on our TV screens is when there is a terrible famine in East Africa, an act of piracy or civil war. But in real life Africa is a huge continent in which, despite relative poverty, the vast majority of its people live happily.

I am not in any sense denying or belittling the problems of poverty and disease, prolonged by an expoitative world economic system. But there is no famine in Guinea Conakry, where Diallo is from. People do not starve there. And she is a Muslim Fulani, and therefore part of a dominant group in Guinea Conakry, most certainly not a persecuted one. Which is why her claim was based on lies about gang rapes. There is no political reason why Diallo would need political asylum.

Of course Guinea Conakry is poorer than the United States. But actually it is not at all an unpleasant place, it really is not. Unless you believe that anyone from a poor country should always be allowed to emigrate to the United States, or that anyone from an undemocratic country should always be allowed to emigrate to the United States, (and you are quite entitled to that view if you hold it), there is no reason Diallo should not be returned. There really is not.

If you think all of Africa is a hell-hole, you are absolutely wrong.


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74 thoughts on “Diallo Must Be Deported

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  • Nextus

    Dreoilin, you keep weaving between the particular case of Diallo and the general plight of women in Guinea, mixing them liberally in argument. For instance, you (possibly without thinking) attributed the following outrageous opinion to Craig: “And to hell with women suffering female genital mutilation in Guinea.” Bizarrely, the justification you’ve just offered for such slander is … that of course it’s not equivalent to the suggestion that Diallo is being deported as a punishment for lying.(?) Re-read what you wrote and spot the non-sequitur. Maybe you need to lie down for a while.
    .
    I reiterate: “But it seems you are still citing it [a cultural statistic] to excuse lies on asylum application forms, thereby incentivizing false applications”. Well?? Yay or nay? This is the nub of the particular ethical dilemma raised in Craig’s post. You’re entitled to your own opinion on it; I just want to be clear about what you’re proposing.

  • I'll be back aka Dreoilin

    Nextus,
    .
    How much of your time do you spend pedantically nitpicking on blogs, pretending that you don’t understand what people are saying? You have already ignored several points I made above. You have so far changed the goal posts about three times. I won’t be responding to you further on this thread. So you can go and have a lie down yourself.

  • Nextus

    That’s alright, Dreoilin. You can keep talking nonsense as you please. I don’t need your assent to criticise it.
    .
    We’ll see what happens to Diallo in due course. I think she should be reprimanded for being a serial deceiver – but not deported for it. She should be deported if she’s ineligible for asylum.

  • I'll be back aka Dreoilin

    “The sex assault case against Dominique Strauss-Kahn took yet another legal turn today, when a New York judge dismissed the charges — but put the order on hold pending an appeal.
    .
    “State Supreme Court Justice Michael Obus said he wouldn’t dismiss the case until an appeal is decided on whether a special prosecutor should be appointed. That appeal was expected to be decided later today.”
    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/dominique-strausskahn-cleared-with-a-hitch-2342525.html

  • Anon

    Once again everyone seems to have missed that the Strauss-Kahn affair happened when it did!, the IMF, french elections on the horizon. some coincidence is it not!!!.

  • shadesofgrey

    Yeah, I know a little country where according to UNICEF the vast majority of boys get half their dicks chopped off whether they like it or not. Not at all an unpleasant place. Not all of Africa is poor you know – indeed, some people there are very, very rich. Oh and here’s someone thoroughly recommending the ex-pat lifestyle there – see? Lovely.

    Dreoilin, you keep weaving between the particular case of Diallo and the general plight of women in Guinea, as though Diallo was in fact a Guinean woman and the treatment of women there was in any way relevant to the discussion. And how dare you assert that all women subjected to general mutilation should gain asylum? Oh, you didn’t. Still, that won’t stop me from patronising you, as you may have noticed.

  • Simona

    “I have won a large number of cases, and indeed never lost a case at tribunal.”

    I had no idea you were a lawyer/barrister. I presume a profession of this sort would come in handy at the foreign office – more so than a degree in literature or philosophy!

  • Lafontaine

    It seems to me that if anybody’s veracity should be questioned it is DSK’s. And yes, his position, power and money do make a huge difference in both society and justice system. I knew this woman would not stand a chance once the wolves, aka lawyers, set upon her. DSK raped a woman in France who was discouraged by her own mother from charging him. It has just been revealed that her mother had had consensual ‘brutal’ sex with him before that, hence had her own reputation to cover when giving her daughter that advice. This man is reprehensible and dangerous. Your own attack on Diallo is callous and cruel. What more do you want to do to this poor woman? Wasn’t the shame and the violence perpetrated by DSK enough? Are you by any chance connected to him financially?

  • Suhayl Saadi

    “Are you by any chance connected to him financially?” Lafontaine.
    .
    An otherwise rational argument (with which one can agree or disagree, in part or in whole) is demolished by that last sentence, a personal attack in Craig Murray’s fiduciary honesty framed as a question (so not strictly defamatory). No need for it, Lafontaine.
    .
    DSK may well be a lecherous shit who has got away with far too much in his life and who should not be able to get away with sexual harassment. That does not mean that this was not a ‘kompromat’ op. originating in France, nor that Diallo was innocent. Surely, one can criticise either, or both, without it being suggesting that one is in the pay of either (say) Sarkozy or DSK.

  • craig Post author

    Lafontaine

    No, I am not connected in any way to DSK, as far as I know. He sounds like a nasty piece of work by pretty well all accounts. Which has no bearing on the question of whether fraudulent asylum seekers should be deported.

    I stress here fraudulent as opposed to merely failed. There are many cases in which failed asylum seekers ought not be deported. Fraudulent is different. Next plane.

  • mrjohn

    Craig, if you look at that photo and cannot read the body language then I think it is just as well you gave up your career as a diplomat. The position of Mr Obama’s hand speaks volumes. Remember what Wikileaks taught us, the US intelligence service is very thorough.

    You also appear to forget the forensic evidence.

    Nobody except the two people concerned will ever know what actually happened before DSK went to have lunch with his daughter, but we do know he is a class act.

  • Meeee

    Craig..totally agree..I was in Guinea Conakry last month for a conference and it is actually a very nice place….would highly recommend Dolphin Resturant on the beach for a few bevvies and a nice seafood dinner….

    Yes, and I wonder how many africans can afford to go to the Dolphin Restaurant on the beach for a few bevvies and dinner!!!!

    Craig, I used to follow your blog, but your rantings, show behind that exterior, you are still an imperialist…..

    As Lucky Dube said….Africa and Africans will never be free until Africa is free!!!! have a little compassion, will you??? like any imperialist you only go to the continent because of what you can get out of it….

  • Richard Trillo

    One point of correction Craig – it may have no bearing on Diallo’s legal case, but you’re not correct to assert that “she is a Muslim Fulani, and therefore part of a dominant group in Guinea Conakry, most certainly not a persecuted one.”

    The Fula (Peul/Peuhl/Fulbe etc) do indeed have a history of persecution in Guinea. Sékou Touré waged a virtually genocidal campaign to keep them out of public life for most of his presidency. Trading connections with Fula communities across West Africa made them particularly vulnerable scapegoats. The first OAU secretary general, Diallo Telli, was a Fula and accused of leading a CIA-backed conspiracy, so Sékou Touré had him arrested and starved to death. Their situation has improved, but I think Fula-speakers from Guinea would confirm that all is not well.

  • Nextus

    “I wonder how many africans can afford to go to the Dolphin Restaurant on the beach for a few bevvies and dinner”
    Good question. Incidentally, a large proportion of the UK population can’t afford that kind of luxury either – or at least have more pressing needs.
    .
    When people highlight the plight of those poor, poor Africans, they would do well to note that some areas and nations are in fact more harmonious and equitable than our own society. Certainly East Africa has terrible famines and Central Africa suffers internecine bloodbaths; discrimination is rife in the South, and some Western states are mired in corruption, etc. Poverty abounds. But not all areas are populated by people who are starving or brutally oppressed. Some places indeed are relatively happy and sociable, even if we wouldn’t wish to live there ourselves.
    .
    Similarly, certain practices seem absolutely abhorrent to us: cruel, pointless and inhumane. (The tribal rituals of warrior bloodletting and extreme body modification spring to mind.) It’s worth noting that some people in these cultures view the West as decadent, perverse, and socially crippled. They have different social structures, different value systems, different views on how the world should work. It’s easy for us to condemn practices we find shocking, because we find them shocking, but it’s a two-way street. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t condemn – just that we should be aware of the ethical complexities when we do condemn.
    .
    Violation and mutilation of individuals or groups of course deserve condemnation, even intervention. They are abhorrent because they entail imposing brutality on unwilling subjects who don’t subscribe to those ethical rules. Many of us would take a similar view of the amputations and stonings under Sharia law. (A lot of us even baulk at the idea of ritual male circumcision!) But here is where it gets complex. Islam has a different set of values, staunchly defended by large populations who comprise a significant proportion of the world. There is a clash of value systems. African cultures have their own value systems too. So is there an absolute morality from which to condemn outright?
    .
    Of course there is a lot to take issue with here, especially if you do believe in absolute morality (which just happens to be the one you grew up with, right?). But taking issue is the point – it is, at the very least, a challenging essay topic, not something to be settled by simplistic fundamental moral pronouncements. Certainly, most of us blog-readers are from the same culture, and most of us are liberal-leaning within that culture; therefore it may be relatively easy to elicit local consensus on moral issues. That’s very worthwhile. But frowning on other societies as primitive, barbaric or morally twisted is to take a culturally-prejudiced, patronising, and ultimately insulting view. Africans deserve better than to be subjected to our ethical imperialism.
    .
    Yes of course there are a few extreme counterexamples to moral relativity: involving homicide, mutilation and sexual violation (as noted above). But the ethical map is mostly covered by shades-of-grey.
    .
    Like I said, it is at the very least an essay topic, and we’re not likely to settle it here. But hopefully we can avoid mutual haranguing over whether other cultures are obviously just plain morally wrong. They may be wrong, and it may be obvious from where we’re sitting – but rather less obvious to people outside this cultural locus.

  • cornflakekid

    Also, too, remember so many women hotel worker “chambermaids” in NYC who went out on the streets of New York and supported Diallo are now completely demoralised, and they deal with shit “guests” and their “friendly advances” every bloody day. But they can barely afford NYC rent rates, let alone lawyers.

  • I'll be back aka Dreoilin

    shadesofgrey,
    I did indeed, thanks. 😉
    .
    mrjohn
    That photo is remarkable. I don’t think Craig looked at it at all.

  • exiledlondoner

    As with most polarised issues, there has been a fair amount of bollocks written from both sides. Just as DSK deserves the assumption of innocence, whatever his history might be, Diallo deserves the same. As far as I know there is no more evidence that Diallo made up her accusations, than there is evidence that DSK raped her. Their respective histories make neither of them very reliable witnesses, and faced with two compromised protagonists, the prosecutor had little choice but to drop charges.

    I would take issue with your point that Diallo must be deported though, and for several reasons.

    Firstly, asylum seekers lie on their applications – whatever the situation in her home country, Diallo had good reasons for wanting to swap third world Africa for New York. Maybe she shouldn’t have lied, but faced with a choice of lying, or being sent home, how many of us would have been honest in her position?

    Secondly, the US needs illegal immigrants. Without those who sneak in, or who lie to get in, many parts of the economy wouldn’t function. Let’s be honest about it – US immigration rules are an elaborate sham, and designed to provide the country with a cheap pool of unnofficial labour that can be expanded or contracted as needed.

    Finally, if Diallo was deported because of this case, what message would it send out to others who lied to get in to the US? It would create an underclass without any protection from the law – rape an illegal and she can’t make a complaint.

    Maybe Diallo should be deported? Maybe she will be deported? Whatever happens though, it should be the result of normal procedure and law – not the result of her current fame or notoriety. Calling for her to be deported makes me feel very uncomfortable.

  • exiledlondoner

    Craig Murray,
    .
    One last point…
    .
    “Of course Guinea Conakry is poorer than the United States. But actually it is not at all an unpleasant place, it really is not. Unless you believe that anyone from a poor country should always be allowed to emigrate to the United States, or that anyone from an undemocratic country should always be allowed to emigrate to the United States, (and you are quite entitled to that view if you hold it), there is no reason Diallo should not be returned. There really is not.”
    .
    You’ve put your finger on the sham that is the free market.
    .
    There is a free market in goods and services – maintained by the WTO, WB and IMF – in which someone in the third world can compete for my spending, in a race to the bottom with other poor people, but they are prohibited from competing for my way of life.
    .
    Either we believe in a free market, in which case an African can compete directly with me, or we don’t, in which case why are we forcing them to open up their markets to our companies?
    .
    The current position is that while there are few bars to business and capital moving around the world, the manpower they exploit is imprisoned. So long as business can move freely, but people like Diallo cannot, people will be little more than a resource to exploit. Why shouldn’t someone working for $1 a day in a western-owned factory, aspire to the $10 an hour the same job would pay elsewhere? It is only the resrictions on their movement that prevents them from being paid what they’re worth, and allows the company to pay them so little.
    .
    If people are to be held captive then capital must be similarly restricted.

  • Nextus

    Exiledlondoner: “Firstly, asylum seekers lie on their applications”
    – Do you mean *all* asylum seekers? No, of course you don’t. How many, then? Craig will testify many asylum seekers are genuine – and honest. But many others claim asylum purely for economic reasons. Indeed, some are relatively well off within their own communities, and spend a small fortune to be trafficked to the UK on false pretences in search of better opportunities for capitalist prosperity. Don’t forget about *them* too.
    .
    “Diallo had good reasons for wanting to swap third world Africa for New York.”
    – Perhaps. The key question for asylum judges, though, is whether New York has good reasons for accepting Diallo. Apparently not. And the asylum system needs firm rules against moral special pleading to prevent discriminatory abuse by officials.
    .
    “Maybe she shouldn’t have lied, but faced with a choice of lying, or being sent home, how many of us would have been honest in her position?”
    – We face a similar situation when applying for social housing or benefits, where ineligible applicants have much to gain from lying. The rules are intended as strict disincentives. And indeed most of us are honest, whatever the consequences. Those who aren’t, lose their entitlement and face prosecution. That’s how the system works. There is a facility for appeal of course: but you have to be honest in your appeal too.
    .
    You could paraphrase the same question about a husband who cheats on a wife. “How many of us would be honest about it?? Come on, just a little white lie… (It’s OK for Bill Clinton …)”. Disgraceful. It may prevent a personal catastrophe in a particular case, but the invention of lying makes life very difficult for honest people falsely accused.
    .
    “Secondly, the US needs illegal immigrants.”
    – Fine. So it’s based on need? Then it can choose which it to accept.
    .
    “Finally, if Diallo was deported because of this case, what message would it send out to others who lied to get in to the US?”
    – How about “Don’t lie”. Seems obvious enough to me.

  • exiledlondoner

    Nextus
    .
    “Do you mean *all* asylum seekers? No, of course you don’t. How many, then? Craig will testify many asylum seekers are genuine – and honest.”

    Of course many are honest. If the test is based on a genuine fear of persecution, then many will honestly qualify. The problem is that a genuine fear of persecution isn’t a black and white issue – if you fear persecution, but aren’t sure if you will be accepted, then some will gild the lily.
    .
    “But many others claim asylum purely for economic reasons.”
    .
    Is that bad? My Grandfather came to Britain for economic reasons.
    .
    “Indeed, some are relatively well off within their own communities, and spend a small fortune to be trafficked to the UK on false pretences in search of better opportunities for capitalist prosperity. Don’t forget about *them* too.”
    .
    Very true – the harder we make it to reach these shores, the wealthier those that make it will need to be. If they’re rich enough they don’t even have to worry about traffickers – we welcome multi-millionaires with open arms.
    .
    “The key question for asylum judges, though, is whether New York has good reasons for accepting Diallo. Apparently not. And the asylum system needs firm rules against moral special pleading to prevent discriminatory abuse by officials.”
    .
    I’m not sure whether there are any better or worse reasons for accepting Diallo, than for accepting the millions of other illegal immigrants. I am sure that her encounter with DSK should have nothing to do with that decision.
    .
    “We face a similar situation when applying for social housing or benefits, where ineligible applicants have much to gain from lying. The rules are intended as strict disincentives. And indeed most of us are honest, whatever the consequences.”
    .
    Similar? How similar is it really?
    .
    Sure, one can gain from lying when applying for benefits, or by lying on our tax return, but the stakes are so much lower. We live in a world in which your place of residence can make a hundred-fold difference in your income, double your life expectancy, and transform the lives of your children. Above all, illegal migration is a product of inequality – I will remain in the richest 10% whatever my talents, and I shouldn’t be shocked if others want some of the same.
    .
    “Those who aren’t, lose their entitlement and face prosecution. That’s how the system works. There is a facility for appeal of course: but you have to be honest in your appeal too.”
    .
    I’m not arguing that the system doesn’t work that way – I’m suggesting that in the bigger picture it isn’t illegal migrants who are robbing us by coming here, but it’s us, with our lifestyle based on robbing them, that makes illegal migration inevitable.
    .
    “You could paraphrase the same question about a husband who cheats on a wife. “How many of us would be honest about it?? Come on, just a little white lie… (It’s OK for Bill Clinton …)”. Disgraceful. It may prevent a personal catastrophe in a particular case, but the invention of lying makes life very difficult for honest people falsely accused.”
    .
    Do you think a quick shag on the side is comparable to travelling half way around the world, often at great personal risk, for a better life?
    .
    “Fine. So it’s based on need? Then it can choose which it to accept.”
    .
    Of course it can. I was voicing my opinion – I wasn’t issuing instructions to the US Immigration service.
    .
    “How about “Don’t lie”. Seems obvious enough to me.
    .
    That wasn’t my point – I was saying that those who hadn’t been found out would effectively be outside any legal protection – but deporting people who lie isn’t going to discourage people who would have been deported anyway.
    .
    If you want to discourage people from trying to get into the US, you’re going to have to start lining them up and shooting them on TV – the stakes are that high. I live in Spain, and every week people die trying to cross the Med, or get to the Canary Islands. The more the west becomes a fortress – a gated community to keep the rest out – the more they are going to risk to get here.

  • I'll be back aka Dreoilin

    Nextus,
    I have no idea what kind of burr you have up your butt. But there is ‘Dreoilin’ and there is ‘I’ll be back aka Dreoilin’ (I hadn’t fixed on a new handle yet and wanted to identify myself), and there is ‘Shadesofgrey’. I have no idea who ‘Shadesofgrey’ is, and there is no ‘ShadesOfDreoilin’.
    Get over yourself.

  • Smiley

    No foreigner ever has the ‘RIGHT’ to stay in ANY country (including myself). Remaining or beinging allowed to enter ANY country for that matter is ALWAYS a PRIVILEGE. ANY country can revoke that privilege anytime the guest violates the conditions and agreement set forth by that country. 🙂

  • exiledlondoner

    Smiley,

    “No foreigner ever has the ‘RIGHT’ to stay in ANY country (including myself). Remaining or beinging allowed to enter ANY country for that matter is ALWAYS a PRIVILEGE. ANY country can revoke that privilege anytime the guest violates the conditions and agreement set forth by that country”
    .
    I accept that in most cases this is the reality, and I’m not actually calling for free movement of people. What I’m saying is that DSK and Diallo are representative of a problem.
    .
    Strauss Kahn was the head of an organisation that helps to spread inequality around the world through the free movement of capital coupled with tight restrictions of the movement of people.
    .
    Regardless of any claims of persecution, Diallo could earn many times more as a maid in the US than by staying at home.
    .
    Whatever one might think about Diallo, one needs to question why someone doing a job in one country is “worth” so many times more than someone doing the same job in another. The answer is that the so-called “free market” is actually nothing of the sort – it’s a market that has been skewed to transfer wealth from the poor to the rich. It offers business a pool of trapped labour that has little choice but to feed profits. The only way out is to migrate, legally or illegally.
    .
    Americans and Europeans enjoy a lifestyle based on GDPs of over $10,000 per year per person – in much of the third world the figure is less than $1,000. Does anyone really think that we are ten times harder working, or ten times more deserving? The reality is that much of our wealth is based their poverty – we all benefit from exploiting people like Diallo, and as head of the IMF, Strauss Kahn had already raped her long before they met.
    .
    Yes, western countries will try to put up the barriers and stop the hoard at the gates, but people will continue to risk everything to get here.

  • Nextus

    @Dreoilin-aka-Whatever: I’m sorry you’re so upset, but my ‘ShadesOfDreoilin’ quip implied that your influence was apparent, even if your hand wasn’t. Shadesofgrey’s first post systematically reiterated each of your points, in a parodic reductio (quite effective, by the way). Hence the name-play: Shades-of-Dreoilin. I made no identity claim (though it’s interesting you should construe it that way). I note that Shadesofgrey also chimed in eagerly when another contributor raised issues in support of your position. The tag permutation is apt regardless of who the author was. Anyway, enough of the petty personality squabbles: it’s the legal/moral topic that’s important here.

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