Columbus terrorist was here on green card, placed on watch list

· February 17, 2016  
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Men talk outside the Columbus, Ohio, restaurant where police say a man attacked several people with a machete on Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016. Authorities say the man fled the scene and was later fatally shot by police. (AP Photo/Kantele Franko)

In one of the best-kept secrets in recent memory, there was indeed a terror attack on our soil last Thursday.  As we noted last week, Mohamed Barry walked into a café owned by an Israeli Christian, hacked  a number of patrons with a machete, and then shouted “Allah Akbar” before he was shot dead by police.  Unfortunately, nobody in the national media has taken interest in the story.

There are two more details that are worth highlighting.

Mohamed Barry was an immigrant from Guinea, a predominantly Muslim country, who held a green card.

Barry was investigated by the FBI for Islamic radicalism four years ago, but they moved on without taking action.  Nonetheless, Barry was placed on a terror watch list and was still on it the day he committed the attack.

By now, you should all be asking the obvious question.  Why in the world was this man not deported?  Why should anyone be in this country on a green card while simultaneously being placed on a watch list?

Unlike citizens, who have a right to remain here until they are convicted of treason, green card-holders have no affirmative right to stay in the country.  Anyone with a suspicion of ties to terror or even harboring those views must be deported.  There are no First Amendment rights for immigrants to remain in this country.  They cannot be indefinitely detained but they can be deported at the will of the federal government.

This story is eerie coming a year after another immigrant from Guinea brutally tortured a D.C. family to death in one of the “Mansion Murders” of 2015.  The perpetrator, Daron Wint, had 30 incidents on his rap sheet prior to the murder, including assault, beatings, stabbings, theft, and yes…showing up to work with a machete.

The reason the immigration status of these perpetrators is so important, and the reason the media covers it up, is because immigration is an elective policy.  We have to deal with the problems among U.S. citizen but we don’t have to tolerate criminal behavior from immigrants for a minute.  It’s bad enough we admit so many criminals and/or terrorists into our country in the first place.  That we allow them to remain, even after they have demonstrated they pose a threat to society, is the worst form of criminal negligence.

Even before we had formal federal immigration laws, the executive branch worked faithfully to keep us safe.  In 1869, Secretary of State Hamilton Fish said, “[T]he control of the people within its limits, and the right to expel from its territory persons who are dangerous to the peace of the State, are too clearly within the essential attributes of sovereignty to be seriously contested.”  And indeed, the laws on the books already grant the executive branch the full authority to deport anyone who “endorses or espouses terrorist activity or persuades others to endorse or espouse terrorist activity or support a terrorist organization.” [section 212(a)(3)(B)(i)(VII) of the Immigration and Nationality Act]

Undoubtedly, the current occupant of the White House is uninterested in following the law.  But the GOP presidential candidates must make it clear they will deport any immigrant who espouses support for Islamic terrorism.


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Author: Daniel Horowitz

Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.