On Monday, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said the potential for terrorists to sneak into the country through the porous U.S.-Mexico border is not what concerns him the most.
“A foreign extremist penetrating our country through our Southern border is not the thing that I most worry about,” he said at Rice University in Texas.
Saying that “the total number of those who attempt to illegally cross our southwest border has declined dramatically” in recent years, Johnson claimed that, “put simply, it’s now much harder to cross our border illegally and evade capture than it used to be–and people know that.”
Johnson diminished the threat of potential terrorists illegally entering the United States through its porous Southern border even though a Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) report revealed that illegal immigrants have been working with terrorists organizations like Al-Shabaab, the Somali terrorist group, to sneak other terrorists into the country. Al-Shabaab has ties to al-Qaeda and ISIS has been reaching out to the group in recent months. Judicial Watch also exposed this year that ISIS may even be operating a terror camp just miles from the Southern border in Mexico.
The DPS report found that between November 2013 and July 2014, the Terrorist Screening Center “reported 143 land border crossing encounters with watch-listed individuals in southwest border states,” including 97 in Texas. Breitbart Texas also reported that Border Patrol agents recently arrested a Middle Eastern man who was trying to illegally enter the country and turned him over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for expedited removal.
In addition, Breitbart Texas also obtained a leaked Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) intelligence report last year that revealed illegal aliens from more than 75 different countries, including those in the Middle East that are associated with terrorism, attempted to enter the United States from 2010 to 2014.
In his speech, Johnson also defended the Obama administration’s executive amnesty programs, saying he felt confident that the administration would prevail in court, and urged Congress to grant amnesty to illegal immigrants not covered under Obama’s executive amnesty.
“I submit it’s also the right thing to do,” he said. “In the United States of America, do we say to a class of people who have lived here for years and are not going away: we know you are here, your family is here, but you are destined to live in this country as a second-class person? Or do we give them an opportunity to earn a better place?”