A Marine Corps veteran working as a security specialist in Iraq never expected the reaction to his video commenting on President Donald Trump’s executive order on immigration and refugees.
Seen more than 44 million times, Steven Gern chronicled the unvarnished truth of how Americans are viewed in the seven countries affected by Trump’s actions and was subsequently forced to return home for his own safety.
“I never thought in a million years that this would go viral,” he told Fox News. “And happen over a simple conversation with my team members.”
Marine vet speaks out about viral video supporting Trump travel ban https://t.co/Ox0RXiH11Y (via @brookefoxnews) pic.twitter.com/XQOkZ1ndYU
— Fox News (@FoxNews) February 10, 2017
“There are a lot of unknowns right now,” he continued, “and what we don’t need is to continue to flood the United States with people from countries that are in such bad states when it comes to terrorism—we can’t have them come until they are properly vetted.”
Gern appeared on Fox News’ “Hannity” on Friday to discuss the incident, which may result in him losing his job.
WATCH: Retired Marine Posts Warning From Iraq After Travel Ban Uproar https://t.co/AoO9kgxUYr | #Hannity pic.twitter.com/IONzUpppQt
— Fox News (@FoxNews) February 11, 2017
From a “boots on the ground” perspective, the Marine vet cautioned the country about being naive, saying “they need to understand there is a reason we have processes and policies in place to protect Americans.”
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“The Iraqis, in general, have very little respect for any America –regardless of whether you’re a Marine, a contractor, or a civilian — they have very little respect for you,” Gern said.
In his video, Gern explained that he asked Iraqis he worked with who were not happy with Trump’s executive order what would happen to him, as an American citizen, if he were to go into a nearby town.
Video: Marine vet evacuated from Iraq after telling the unvarnished truth about Trump’s travel ban https://t.co/ydolzA1UA0 pic.twitter.com/SkZXTSoaJF
— Conservative News (@BIZPACReview) February 7, 2017
The Iraqis said he would be snatched up and killed within an hour by the locals.
“This is the local populace that would do this,” Gern said. “This isn’t ISIS… this isn’t al-Qaeda… So, my question to them was pretty simple after that.
“If you would do this to me, in your country, why would I let you in my country?”
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