By Joe Guzzardi
November 30, 2015
Two heads of state committed to resettling Syrian Muslim refugees into their respective countries —United States President Barack Obama and Canada’s newly-elected Prime Minister Justin Trudeau—have created high anxiety among their citizens.
Because the Canadian border is as porous as the border between Mexico and the U.S., the fear is that some among the Syrians Canada pledged to take in may be terrorists, and could easily cross. Since Canada shares 5,525 miles of border with the U.S. and Mexico 1,989, the northern border may present more and better opportunities for terrorists to enter than does Mexico.
Originally, Canadian Immigration Minister John McCallum promised that the country would accept 25,000 Syrians before January 2016, an aggressive, and incomprehensible post-Paris goal. Last week, however, the minister announced a scaled-back but still unfathomable resettlement plan that could leave Canadians vulnerable to terrorists.
McCallum’s new approach would give priority to the allegedly “most vulnerable” that would include families, at-risk women (the qualifications for at-risk are vague), and LGBT community members. Single men will be banned unless they accompany their parents or are among the LGBT. Canada’s revised refugee allocation would break down as a mix of 10,000 government and privately-sponsored Syrian refugees by Dec. 31, then the remaining 15,000 by February 2016, and possibly 10,000 more before year end 2016.
Canada’s policy may be politically correct, but it’s a formula for disaster. First, if a Syrian claims he’s gay, the Canadian government can’t disprove it. Moreover, Paris terrorist ringleader and fugitive Salah Abdeslam was a well-known homosexual who frequented clubs and gay bars.
Second, over the years terrorists have recruited dozens of female suicide bombers including teenagers because they can more easily infiltrate public places than men, and create less suspicion. Canadians don’t have to look too far back into history for the most recent example. During a seven-hour shoot-out with French law enforcement, ISIS terrorist Hasna Ait Boulahcen died alongside her cousin Abdelhamid Abaaoud, the mastermind of the Paris killing spree. Before her death, Paris-born Boulahcen never traveled to Syria or Iraq, but nevertheless vowed to practice Jihad as long as she lived.
Third and most chilling, al Queda-backed Samira Ahmed Jassim, nicknamed “the mother of believers,” confessed that she had been instrumental in recruiting about 80 suicide bombers. Jassim organized rape squads to sexually assault young victims, and then offer them suicide bombing assignments as a path to escape their shame and win redemption with Allah.
Trudeau and Obama repeat widely discredited talking points: citizens have nothing to fear. Security professionals will thoroughly vet incoming refugees. But last week, the Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association (FLEOA) denounced Obama’s assertion. The organization represents more than 25,000 federal officers from 65 different agencies. Said group President Nathan Catura: “There is no effective means or magical litmus test to assess prospective terrorists hidden among the throngs of refugees applying for entry into the U. S. The men and women in federal law enforcement are not dispassionate towards those seeking to escape persecution. However, our compassion is first for Americans.”
Unlike Trudeau and Obama, Catura can back up his opinion with facts, not wishful thinking. The FBI has more than 1,000 active domestic ISIS cases that involve 48 suspects so dangerous that the agency is using its elite mobile surveillance team to track them around-the-clock. FBI Director James Comey warmed that the conversion from radicalization to violent action is “flash to bang.” Comey pointed to party-goer turned terrorist Boulahcen as an example.
Trudeau and Obama’s fierce determination to put their nations in jeopardy calls into question their motivation and their judgment. At best, resettling thousands of Syrians in Canada and the U.S. is risky. At worst, it’s deadly.
Joe Guzzardi is a Californians for Population Stabilization Senior Writing Fellow. Contact him at [email protected]