Citizenship Delayed for Decorated, Wounded US Soldier

http://blog.aclu.org/2008/07/18/soldier-fights-citizenship-delays/

I am a native of Iraq and proud to be a U.S. Army soldier with a Purple Heart. I love the U.S. and that’s why I want to become a citizen. But my naturalization has been delayed. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) told me that it’s because, despite my combat service in the U.S. Army, I haven’t passed the FBI background check.

When I was serving this country and the U.S. Army in Iraq, a suicide bomber blew up just 10 feet from me and my buddies, and I was seriously wounded. After partially recovering from my injuries, I did another stint in Iraq until December 2007. For my service, I was awarded the Purple Heart, two Army Commendation medals, a Combat Action badge, Gold Combat Spurs and many certificates and letters of appreciation.

At one point, I was told by a USCIS official that my citizenship would be expedited because of my military status. At another point, I was told it would take longer because of my military status. By yet another official, I was told that the USCIS never does checks on military background before granting citizenship.

Specialist Polous is a permanent lawful resident of the United States, currently stationed in Fort Riley, Kansas. He is a native and citizen of Iraq. He immigrated to the U.S. in May 2001 and quickly applied for political asylum, which was granted in 2002. In 2005, he became a lawful permanent resident of the United States.

We translators need a political action committee.

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Filed under arab, arabic, arabist, War in Iraq

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