Thomas Wictor

Trump is not the problem. Do you know who is?

Trump is not the problem. Do you know who is?

On December 7, 2015, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump said that as president, he would temporarily stop Muslim immigration to the US “until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.” Predictably, all hell broke loose as demagogues accused Trump of demagoguery. Nobody spoke about this.


My view is that what’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Muslims need to stop whining. It’s embarrassing.

The real problem isn’t Muslim immigration. What’s putting our lives at risk is the US government and its incompetence, denial, and adherence to the letter of the law instead of the principle. Watch how easily I can prove it.

I collect photos, illustrations, and information about flamethrowers of World War I. In fact I’ve published three books about them. On October 25, 2015, I bought a Spanish magazine published in 1917. It contains an article about German flamethrowers. The seller of the magazine lives in Spain. Within one minute of making the payment by PayPal, I got this notice.


When I went to the Resolution Center, they said that a hold had been put on the payment until I did the following.

1. Explain what Industria de Armamentos was.

2. Explain why I wanted to buy this.

3. Tell them what I planned to do with this item.

4. Send photos of the item.

5. Send copies of the correspondence I had with the person selling me the item.

6. Tell them whether or not I knew the person selling me the item.

I was informed than unless I did all of this, the sale would not be allowed, and my account would be closed. And they would’ve reported me to the Treasury Department. They didn’t say so, but that’s what would’ve happened.

So I did everything they asked, explaining that I’m a collector, and that Industria de Armamentos meant “Industry of Armaments,” a long-defunct publication from Spain that described developments in weaponry. I sent scans of the pages that interested me.



After PayPal did an investigation, they allowed the sale and unlocked my account. It took them two days.

PayPal has 15,800 employees. In 2014, PayPal had 173 million accounts, and the company processed 4 billion transactions. Yet someone was able to find ONE suspicious transaction and investigate it in two days. What happened was that the word Armamentos and the location of Spain were red flags. Spain is a haven for Muslim terrorists.

Now, let’s compare the 15,800 employees of PayPal investigating 4 billion transactions to the US government’s vetting of Muslim immigrants.

Can we blame Donald Trump?

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the FBI are charged with identifying potential terrorists trying to get into the country. DHS has 240,000 employees, and the FBI has 35,104. Thus we have over 275,000 tasked with finding terrorists.

Every year about 100,000 Muslims immigrate to the US.

There’s simply no excuse for the following failure.

Ms. Malik declared allegiance to the Islamic State in a Facebook post around the time of the shooting last week, which had led the authorities to conclude that it was a terrorist attack.

But the authorities say that the couple may have decided to commit terrorism in the name of the Islamic State late in the planning process, after their views had hardened and they had already committed to violence. The Islamic State rose to prominence last year, and only this year began calling in earnest for small-scale attacks on the West.

The disclosure also raised the possibility that American immigration and law enforcement authorities missed something in Ms. Malik’s background when they allowed her to enter the country. Ms. Malik entered the United States on a K-1 visa, a 90-day visa given to fiancés planning to marry Americans.

For two years Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik yapped online about committing terrorist acts, yet she was allowed to immigrate to the US. Somehow 15,800 PayPal employees can single out one transaction from 4 billion, but the US government can’t effectively screen 100,000 Muslim immigrants. Here’s one reason why.


This is suicidal stupidity, exactly the opposite of what Trump is suggesting. PayPal wasn’t worried about hurting my feelings by asking me to explain myself. If I didn’t like it, I could go pound sand. It’s their company, so I’m required to do things their way.

Also, PayPal is accountable to the US government, as their initial message to me said. If PayPal runs afoul of the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, the company will be in a world of hurt. Therefore I was profiled and investigated for terrorism.


Did it kill me? No. Did I cry? No. Did I call a press conference? No. That’s because I’m an adult who understands the threat we face, I don’t have a nefarious agenda, and I know that PayPal must answer to the government.

To whom are government employees accountable?


If you work for the government, you can break every law in the book and get away with it. In order to help President Obama win re-election in 2012, the Internal Revenue Service deliberately withheld tax-exempt status from groups associated with the Tea Party. This meant that these groups couldn’t participate in the democratic process. The government used its power to strip basic rights from people it didn’t like. Nobody was punished.

Some of you probably think, “Good! I hate those Tea Party bastards!”

Fine. Hate them. But what happens when the shoe is on the other foot, and the government decides to sic the IRS on groups YOU support? Corruption is an infectious disease. An American soldier who served in Iraq told me that it was impossible to find honest cops. Iraqi police officers all said the same thing: “Everybody else is stealing and accepting bribes. I’d be crazy to not do it myself. My family needs the money.”

Is this the kind of country you want? A nation in which the people we depend on to protect us are corrupt partisan hacks and criminals?

Our current system doesn’t work. Since 2001, people from about 1 percent of the population—Muslims—have been responsible for almost half the terrorist attacks nationwide.


Also, there have been 69 foiled jihadist terrorist attacks since 9/11. We have to face it: One group is carrying out terrorism completely out of proportion to its numbers.

You know what Donald Trump does well? He fires people. My guess is that he would completely eradicate the corruption in the security branches of our government. Would that be a bad thing?

I was born in Venezuela, a nation that has never believed in the rule of law. After my father Edward died on February 23, 2013, I went through all of his belongings to try and discover who he was, since he was a total mystery to me. He left almost nothing behind to explain his life, but being a very frugal man, he always loaded up on free pocket notebooks.

In one such notebook, at the very back, I found this.


It was the only thing written in the entire notebook, which would date from 1961 or 1962, the time we lived in Caripito. DIGEPOL was the Dirección General de Policía, the secret police. It was disbanded in 1969 because its torture and murder had gotten out of hand. My father would’ve had to bribe Colonel Acosta in order to get anything done and to stay alive.

According to my father’s writings, he had to be armed at all times from 1958. Since I knew him for fifty-two years, I was able to read between the lines. He shot and killed several people in the oilfields, in his office, and at the club where the employees drank. The police were simply too dangerous to call when someone started a fight. It was safer to solve the problem yourself. My father grew up hunting everything that ran or flew in Iowa; he was an incredible shot and a quick-draw artist as well.

One man he killed in Venezuela was a Cuban saboteur who tried to blow up a pipeline. Creole Petroleum had gotten intelligence that the attack was coming; my father therefore borrowed an FN-FAL rifle from a Venezuelan National Guardsman, climbed a tree in the jungle, waited until dusk, and killed the Cuban when he began preparing his explosive charge.

Is that what we want here? My father loved Venezuela. He loved the lawlessness.


Call me crazy, but I prefer order and safety to adrenaline-fueling chaos.