28 August 2014

"Dual Citizenship -- Loyal to Whom?"

The title refers to a well written piece about dual citizenship, "Dual Citizenship -- Loyal to Whom?"  by Dan Eden

To avoid surprises . . .  useful and interesting information is provided about Dual Citizenship, but the piece also focuses on Israel in the second half because "the U.S., in its special relationship with Israel, has become very sympathetic to allowing Israeli-Americans to retain two nationalities and allowing U.S. citizens not only to hold public office in Israel, but to hold US government positions as well! No other country holds this special exception to our laws of citizenship." The item is written prior to Dec 2007. However, the serious issue addressed, of problems associated with dual citizenship, for which our government needs to be accountable, has yet to be addressed in public discussion and debate - especially discourse regarding the "special relationship" with Israel.

"Since citizenship carries with it a responsibility to be exclusively loyal to one country, the whole concept of dual citizenship and nationality raises questions about which of the dual citizenships have priority. This is extremely important when the two countries have opposing interests. It can be a deadly problem when a dual citizen is in a high position within our American government." 

What could make the fact of undue influence more clear, regarding the "special relationship" which finds Israeli citizens who are also Americans holding high government office in our nation, than the recent Gaza genocide incident, and the consistent Vetos by U.S. of U.N. resolutions critical of Israel's violations of International and Humanitarian laws?  Well . . .  there is the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between U.S. and Israel  approximately every 10 years which provides Israel with 30 Billion dollars in military aid every time it is renewed.  And there is the violation by our nation of our own Arms Export Control Act, because of continuing to provide that aid after Israel repeatedly uses it to attack the people who live in the territory it occupies . . .

The entire Dual Citizenship article, to be found at the link above, is informative and worth reading.

It is not only Immigration Laws that need revising.  Check out a FAQ about Dual Citizenship from 2011 which makes it clear how "messy" the law is regarding dual citizenship - meaning there seems to be a variety of interpretations. It needs to be revised for clarification and agreement on actual policy.   

If you prefer, read U.S.A law relating to dual citizenship, with some analysis.   If you want to read the pertinent Constitutional passage, Statutes, and Regulations without interpretation and analyses, they are cited and linked to Cornell University Law School's Legal Information Institute "providing open access to law since 1992", for your researching pleasure.
(The link to Immigration and Nationality Act at that site is outdated. 
New link:  http://www.uscis.gov/laws/immigration-and-nationality-act)

The United States does not formally or officially recognize dual citizenship which conflicts with, thus ignores that other nations recognize and allow dual citizenship.  That has the potential to create problems (and in fact has proven to create problems) when dual citizens serve in U.S. government.   The naturalization oath regulation requires "renunciation" of citizenship.  It seems to have become referred to as the "loyalty oath" because "In practice, the naturalization oath means if naturalized citizens were ever faced with a choice of allegiance to the United States or a different nation, they have an obligation to choose the United States."
from "When one passport isn't enough" http://www.cnn.com/2012/07/04/us/dual-nationals/index.html

Hopefully, it is clear that the "special relationship" associated with dual citizen American Israelis serving in the U.S. government is of concern and needs to be considered and discussed.  It is past time that we ask those we have elected to represent us in D.C. for some clarity on the issue.  If we make them accountable to us for it, that may be the only way they will find clarity.  I want to encourage those elected and appointed officials who are supposed to represent their constituencies and America's best interests, to make it mandatory for anyone running for office who holds dual (or more) citizenship in the U.S.A. and any other nation(s) to disclose that fact.