The Corner

Illegal Immigration, Irresponsibility, and Terrorism

So Senator McCain claims border security in the Corker-Hoeven amendment to the Gang of Eight bill is “not only sufficient, it is well over-sufficient.”

No sale. As stated before, alleged border security in the Gang of Eight bill is a lie wrapped in a sham inside a farce. The bells-and-whistles Corker-Hoeven amendment does nothing to change that. It’s a bright, shining joke. Read the bill.

Since the preferred legislative maneuver these days is to incite political fear among easily cowed senators, let’s try this: It’s a certainty that terrorists are among the millions of illegal immigrants who have poured across our unsecured borders. DHS secretary Janet Napolitano last year admitted to Congress that terrorists do enter the U.S. from Mexico. That’s not a surprise. In 2011 more than 7,500 individuals from countries identified as state sponsors of terror or that harbor significant terrorist elements were apprehended along the southwestern border. These countries included Iran, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen, Syria, Iraq, Libya, and Somalia. No doubt the captured were eager to do the jobs Americans won’t do.

It’s believed one terrorist group alone, the Somali al-Shabaab organization aligned with al- Qaeda, may have smuggled hundreds across the border. A Congressional Research Service report states, “Terrorists and terrorist organizations could leverage [smuggling networks] to smuggle a person or weapons of mass destruction into the United States, while the large number of aliens attempting to enter the country illegally could potentially provide cover for the terrorists” (Emphasis added).

This isn’t rocket science. For years, the U.S. has practically advertised to the world the porousness of our southern border. Ostentatious refusals by our government to take even the most basic border-security measures, such as building the 700-mile fence mandated by the 2006 Secure Fence Act, signal that the federal government isn’t serious about our sovereignty. The utter absence of any meaningful border security in the Gang of Eight bill is the latest demonstration of such irresponsibility.

Opponents of border security contend that terrorists could still gain entry to the U.S. without crossing the southern border. True. But that’s an argument for shoring up those vulnerabilities, not an excuse for the cavalier attitude toward the proven preferred-entry point for millions.

The risk to Americans from the federal government’s adamant refusal to perform its most basic function is glaringly foreseeable. If, one day, something bad should result, sophisticates will no doubt contend that no one should reasonably be held accountable other than the terrorists themselves.

Really?

Peter Kirsanow — Peter N. Kirsanow is an attorney and a member of the United States Commission on Civil Rights.

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