Anyone who has worked in immigration policy or has spoken to ranchers and border agents over the years knows that Middle Eastern jihadists have been infiltrating our southern border for quite some time. It wasn’t until today, however, that an intelligence report vouching for this reality was leaked from the U.S. Military’s Southern Command.
The Washington Free Beacon’s Bill Gertz got wind of the intelligence report and solicited an on-the-record comment from a spokesperson for Southern Command:
“Networks that specialize in smuggling individuals from regions of terrorist concern, mainly from the Afghanistan-Pakistan region, the Middle East, and East Africa, are indeed a concern for Southcom and other interagency security partners who support our country’s national security,” Garcia told the Washington Free Beacon.
“There are major hubs that serve as entry points into the region for migrants from those areas of concern attempting to enter the U.S. along our border with Mexico,” she said. […]
“In 2015, we saw a total of 331,000 migrants enter the southwestern border between the U.S. and Mexico, of that we estimate more than 30,000 of those were from countries of terrorist concern,” she said.
Countries of terrorist concern includes 34 countries in the Middle East, Africa, and central and east Asia.
This revelation should be reason enough to immediately begin constructing a double-layer border wall, which would serve as a force multiplier for struggling border agents trying to keep up with the comprehensive flow of sundry migrants and unaccompanied minors.. However there are two elements concerning our interior enforcement regime that makes this threat all the more disconcerting, Which begs the question, have a significant number of these 30,000 illegals from security risk countries even been deported?
It’s bad enough that we are openly bringing in over 100,000 immigrants per year from these countries of heightened concern —either through the refugee process or other visa categories. At least they are vetted in a superficial way, to the extent one can or should even vet adherents to Sharia law and individuals from countries with no workable data. What’s worse is that jihadists know we offer asylum to anyone who shows up on our soil and claims a credible fear of persecution in their home countries. As I noted before, a Palestinian from Gaza whose father was involved in Fatah came through our southern border and claimed asylum for fear of persecution from Hamas. Given that the entire Islamic world is engaged in endless civil wars, radical elements from each side can be granted immediate refugee status without being approved or vetted —simply if they are able to use the growing smuggling channels to get them across the border. Thus, the abuse of asylum poses an even greater threat than refugees.
One of the theses of my book, Stolen Sovereignty, is that the federal judiciary is engaging in social transformation without representation by stealing the sovereignty of the people and violating congressional plenary power over immigration. They have made it arduous to deport even the few people the Obama administration tries to remove. But this is not just a problem with the Article III courts. As Fox News reported last week, the administrative judges who adjudicate most of the immigration cases under the DOJ’s Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR) have been overturning deportations at a record pace —over and beyond even what Obama’s DOJ lawyers have called for. This autonomous fifth column within our government, which is controlled by lifelong open borders La Raza-types, has undermined even the few deportations Obama has still pursued.
According to recent data from the Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC), nearly six in ten illegal aliens during the first ten months of FY 2016 were set free by immigration judges. At this pace, over 100,000 illegal aliens will be allowed to remain in the country because of immigration judges. Over 82 percent of cases that came before the Phoenix immigration court alone resulted in the alien being allowed to remain in the country.
Sitting atop the food chain of immigration enforcement is the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), which serves as the appellate body of EOIR and plays the role of U.S. district courts in the field of immigration. Not only do BIA judges have the ability to overturn a deportation order from a lower administrative judge, they can review all enforcement actions taken by ICE and the border patrol. And then, if all else fails, Article III circuit courts have been violating over 100 years of settled law (see chapter 4 in my book) and are granting illegal aliens standing to sue for judicial review of administrative actions, and even against federal and state immigration enforcement statutes.
Think about it: hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens —often criminal elements, or at the very least, individuals who become a public charge and are precluded from becoming immigrants based on statutes duly passed by our people and on the books since our country’s founding (and even colonial times) —are charted on a path to citizenship against the will of the people. This is a gross violation of popular sovereignty expressed in the preamble of the Declaration.
When viewed together, the asylum loophole and the judicial amnesty will make it very difficult to deport these individuals from countries with security concerns. Republicans at the presidential and congressional level need to run hard on this issue and promise to end the asylum loophole, build the border fence, strip Article III courts of their ill-gotten power over immigration enforcement, and clean out the administrative courts from the open borders elements that have dominated the field for years.
The debate over open borders is no longer a fiscal or cultural fight. It is a fight for the security of the entire nation and must be treated as such.
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Daniel Horowitz is a senior editor of Conservative Review. Follow him on Twitter @RMConservative.