Vital Signs

Losing the “War on Terror” at the Border

According to a host of news reports, the porous, virtually unprotected southern border of the United States has attracted the attention of Islamic terrorists, as many of us warned it would at the outset of the “War on Terror.”  In March, Time, citing U.S. intelligence officials, reported that Abu Mousab al-Zarqawi, a ring leader of attacks on U.S. personnel in Iraq, was considering hitting “soft targets” in the United States, including movie theaters, restaurants, and schools.  According to the Time report, Zarqawi has reportedly been in contact with Osama bin Laden, and the Al Qaeda leader has urged him to plan such attacks.  A bulletin circulating in security circles at the time stated that Zarqawi believes that, “if an individual has enough money, he can bribe his way into the US.”  Zarqawi sees the path opened by obtaining a visa to Honduras, then passing through Mexico and crossing the U.S. border.

The Zarqawi reports came at a time when even our seemingly uninterested—in enforcing immigration laws, that is—government was acknowledging that illegal immigration is surging, especially along the southern border, with somewhere in the neighborhood of 10-11 million illegal aliens on U.S. soil.  (That is one of the lower estimates.)  “The numbers are astounding,” said Cathy Travis, a spokesman for Rep. Solomon Ortiz, a Texas...

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