On August 21, Texas Governor Rick Perry (R) told a Washington, D.C., audience that there is a “real possibility” ISIS militants have already entered the U.S. through the porous southern border.
Perry pointed to individuals from terrorist countries who have been apprehended on the southern border, and he said it is “common sense” to think ISIS knows the border is not secure and has used it to get in.
According to National Review, Perry pointed to this past summer as a high point in the apprehension of persons from terrorist countries trying to cross illegally into the U.S. He said that this proven presence of people from terrorist countries, together with the “criminal activity” associated with others who have been pouring into the country illegally, makes it difficult to think that “individuals from ISIS” have not tried to enter, as well.
In a post-speech Q and A session, Perry said Obama “should not rule out the idea of sending a traditional ground force into Iraq” against ISIS. He also indicated that the focus of doing so needs to go beyond simply stopping the terrorists’ advance. Rather, he said, “They need to be eliminated; they need to be eliminated now.”
In a speech at the Heritage Foundation on Thursday, Perry emphasized the danger of allowing the Islamic State to expand, noting that the Iraqi people “were up against a terrorist blitzkrieg” and that swift action from the American government was necessary to begin to undo the Islamic State’s “triumphant summer,” resulting from the Obama administration’s inaction.
Perry is also not the only government figure noting the dangers of an open border when a group as sophisticated as the Islamic State is threatening to attack within the nation. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin E. Dempsey noted at a Defense Department press conference this week that “because of open borders and immigration issues, it is an immediate threat–that is to say, the fighters who may leave the current fight and migrate home. Longer-term, it is about ISIS’ vision.”
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