Thank you Mikey and MRFF

Good morning my fellow Americans,

October 2009 is a date that I will never forget. It was the date where my life was turned up side down at my duty station, Ft. Jackson, SC, not because of my military performances or behavior, it was only because of my religion (ISLAM) and where I am originally from; Morocco.

I was investigated and wrongfully accused by my own service branch, the U.S. Army: I was humiliated; degraded; confined; threatened physically and psychologically and put through inhuman situations for many, many scary days that I never thought I would ever see in my life, especially as a proud soldier in the United States Army. I tried talking to my chain of command but “no one was able to help me “. I tried to reach out, even begging for help to many organizations but they could not find what my situation was nor the solution to it. They gave up on me and soon ignored my pleas for help. I felt lost; hopeless; desperate and all alone. Honestly, I was about to give up!!

Even after coming back to my Wash. D.C. national guard unit, all the promises of a full time Army position and a my highly desired combat deployment vanished before my eyes. I couldn’t even find a low level civilian job due to some alleged and never revealed “problem” that affected my official background check. I even met face-to-face with the FBI and offered to take as many additonal polygraph tests as they might want. I had already passed one from the U.S. army just fine.

This undeserved and unknown “problem” brought me only hurtful misery and delayed my treasured U.S. citizenship application. I practically was homeless, sleeping in a car at night with no money with no shoulder to cry on nor a single person to get help from. I was ashamed and so sad and all alone. I only wanted to serve, and if needed give my life in combat, for my hoped for new country, the wonderful United States of America. No where for me to turn to, nobody to talk with for help and out of options.

Until the luckiest day of my life when I got in touch with the Military Religious Freedom Foundation representative in Washington D.C. He forwarded my case fast to MIKEY WEINSTEIN and that had THE biggest impact into getting to the bottom of my “problem” and my hopeless misery as a person and a soldier.

The MRFF and Mikey helped me on every step of the way, including clearing my good name and getting my story on national TV (ABC Nightline) and national newspapers (New York Times). Mikey and the caring people at MRFF gave me strong moral support at all hours of the days and nights. And, yes, even financial support until I got recently my truest dream of all my dreams. My United States of America citizenship.

I will always be thankful to the MRFF and Mikey for their hard sacrifice on helping us American soldiers and fighters in every branch of our military and every (and even “no”) religious affiliation. Especially Muslim-Americans like me that are to this very day still targeted and bullied and made fun of and hurt by many mean and bigoted people in our military. I am now a full and so proud American soldier and citizen. Below you can see me in my proud U.S. Army uniform in front of the beautiful flag of my beloved U.S.A. I am the soldier on the left. The soldier on the right is another Muslim American soldier who Mikey and MRFF helped just like me and he just got his American citizenship a few days ago!

Thank you Mikey and MRFF for never giving up on us.

Spc Yassine Bahammou

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1 Comment

  1. Rayanne Stemmler

    Reading stories such as this one makes me feel so thankful that we (the people of the US) have an organization such as MRFF. I am alarmed and infuriated that our government openly (and sometimes not so openly) discriminates against people based on their religion and national origin. Being an HR manager I regularly hold training on Title VII and illegal harassment. What a slap in the face to every American it is that the government feels they can engage in this behavior with impunity.

    Thank you MRFF and Mikey Weinstein for standing up for those who struggle to have their voice heard; the servicemen and women who suffer illegal abuse at the hands of the US government. Thank you.

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