On September 25, 2014, the administration announced that it would permit aliens who participated in the DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival) program, also known as DREAMERS, to enlist in the U.S. Armed Forces and provide them with expedited citizenship.
On the face of it, this may well sound like a good idea. However, this scheme could prove catastrophic to our military and national security.
There is no doubt that many foreign nationals have served in the U.S. military with distinction. Some have been wounded, and others have paid the “ultimate price.” We must not fail to recognize their loyal service to America and Americans.
However, there are a number of misconceptions concerning the DREAMERS that must be dispelled in light of this new program that would enable some of them to become members of our military.
I wrote an Op-Ed for Fox News Latino about Obama’s misuse of “prosecutorial discretion” that posted on June 17, 2012, just two days after the administration embarked on its ill-conceived program to provide hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens with temporary lawful status and the official identity documents that would, of necessity, be issued to those illegal aliens. In my piece, “Obama Invokes Prosecutorial Discretion to Circumvent Constitution and Congress,” I noted that what the president referred to as “prosecutorial discretion” should actually be referred to as “prosecutorial deception.”
Here is what you need to consider today.
DREAMERS have been repeatedly described as being “young” aliens who were brought to the United States when they were minors; the reality is that they have until the age of 31 to file their applications for participation in this program. They must then make the claim that they were brought to the U.S. when they were children. However, these illegal aliens are not being interviewed in person, and no field investigations are being conducted into the information contained in their applications. This is an open invitation to commit fraud.
The 9/11 Commission noted that immigration fraud was the primary method by which terrorists have entered the U.S. and embedded themselves here.
The program that the president is now creating is specifically intended to involve aliens who have special skills, including language skills and fluency in one of roughly three dozen languages, among them Arabic, Hindi, Korean, Pashto, Nepalese, Russian, Uzbek and Swahili. Some of those languages are the primary/native languages of citizens of countries that sponsor terrorism.
While the administration claims that these aliens would be thoroughly vetted, the reality is far different. A series of reports by the GAO and other oversight agencies has consistently shown that the ability to screen aliens – especially aliens who are citizens of many Middle Eastern countries – leaves much to be desired.
Just last year the Tsarnaev brothers carried out a deadly terrorist attack at the Boston Marathon. One of the brothers was a naturalized citizen, while the other was a lawful resident. The facts surrounding their case call into question that they had been granted political asylum by claiming “credible fear” if they were to return to their native Russia.
After they were granted political asylum, they voluntarily returned to Russia – apparently providing evidence of having committed fraud, yet it went undetected.
On November 20, 2013, ABC News reported: “Exclusive: U.S. May Have Let ‘Dozens’ of Terrorists into Country as Refugees.” This is not a new problem. On July 13, 2011, The Washington Times published a truly disturbing article: “Visas reviewed to find those who overstayed / Aim is to find any would-be terrorists.”
Page 68 of the 9/11 Commission Report contains a paragraph that is of particular significance:
The Embassy Bombing:
As early as December 1993, a team of al Qaeda operatives had begun casing targets in Nairobi for future attacks. It was led by Ali Mohamed, a former Egyptian army officer who had moved to the United States in the mid-1980s, enlisted in the U.S. Army, and became an instructor at Fort Bragg. He had provided guidance and training to extremists at the Farouq mosque in Brooklyn, including some who were subsequently convicted in the February 1993 attack on the World Trade Center.
It is not just this one case. Consider the Fort Hood shooting carried out by Major Nidal Hasan. Consider that “Los Zetas” is arguably the most violent of all Mexican drug trafficking organizations. They started out as elite members of Mexico’s military and law enforcement agencies whom we trained and equipped.
On October 21, 2011, ABC News posted this report: “FBI Finds Gangs Expanding, Even to U.S. Military.” It stated that although FBI and members of law enforcement don’t have estimates on the number of gang members in the military, there is evidence of gangs operating in 100 jurisdictions in the U.S. and abroad, with members of more than 50 different gangs throughout the military.
To find additional information about gangs, check out the FBI report, “2011 National Gang Threat Assessment – Emerging Trends.”
While certainly not all gang members are aliens, many thousands of gang members are indeed citizens of other countries, including Mexico, El Salvador and Guatemala, among others.
As an INS agent, in the late 1970s, I worked closely with the NYPD, ATF and ONI (Office of Naval Intelligence) – currently known as NIS (Naval Investigative Service) – to track down and arrest aliens, predominantly from the Caribbean, who had used false ID to enlist in the U.S. Marine Corps to acquire tactical training and firearms training with high-powered weapons. Their goal was to use that training and the weapons they stole to carry out a series of extremely violent, commando-style bank robberies in the New York City area. We literally followed a trail of blood and bodies.
On May 2, 2013, I was interviewed by Megyn Kelly of Fox News about the terror bombing of the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013: “Immigration Expert: The System Failed in Boston and Keeps on Failing.”
On September 20, 2013, CAPS posted my article about the failures of the vetting process for alien applicants who apply for immigration benefits: “Comprehensive Immigration Reform: Background Checks Require a Reality Check.” Prior to that, on July 30, 2012, I wrote this commentary for CAPS: “Fraud: The Immigration Vulnerability That Undermines the Immigration System and National Security.”
It is vital that anyone who joins our military and undergoes tactical military training and who is given access to our military bases be well screened. The long list of failures of the immigration system, especially where fraud is concerned, should give us “cause of pause” that the administration is implementing a program that may well provide gang members and terrorists with firearms, tactical training and access to our military bases.
In this particularly perilous era, the old adage – “Better safe than sorry” – should be foremost in any actions taken by our government.