For years we’ve warned of the OTM, or Other-Than-Mexican, threat to our southern border. And while suggesting that border security must be reformed during such a politically charged environment has led to accusations of racism for those who support tough border policy and even a wall, the fact is that we now have confirmation from the U.S. government that exactly what we warned would happen has actually happened.
According to the Washington Times, immigration officials have now confirmed that smuggling rings operating from Brazil to Mexico have been moving “migrants” from middle east terror hot beds into the United States via the southern border.
A smuggling network has managed to sneak illegal immigrants from Middle Eastern terrorism hotbeds straight to the doorstep of the U.S., including helping one Afghan who authorities say was part of an attack plot in North America.
Immigration officials have identified at least a dozen Middle Eastern men smuggled into the Western Hemisphere by a Brazilian-based network that connected them with Mexicans who guided them to the U.S. border, according to internal government documents reviewed by The Washington Times.
Those smuggled included Palestinians, Pakistanis and the Afghan man who Homeland Security officials said had family ties to the Taliban and was “involved in a plot to conduct an attack in the U.S. and/or Canada.” He is in custody, but The Times is withholding his name at the request of law enforcement to protect investigations.
In 2014 we reported that terrorists have been captured at our southern border. The report was completely denied by the Department of Homeland Security, which at the time claimed there were “no credible threats.”
It appears that those reports were, in fact, accurate, and that credible threats did exist.
But that’s not even the half of it. We have repeatedly warned that since terrorists have what amounts to nothing short of unfettered access to America’s soft targets because of the Obama administration’s lax policies, they could well be smuggling weapons of mass destruction into the United States when they are crossing over.
It has been confirmed that gunmen have stolen radioactive materials, including Cesium-37, in Mexico on multiple occasions, a threat that was so serious that the Texas Rangers were dispatched to secure the border.
What’s more, last month we reported that game wardens in Texas have been issued radiation detectors as part of their standard uniform because of fears that terrorists “could try to smuggle radioactive material into the country.”
As further evidence of just how grave the threat really is, the Obama administration in March released a report outlining the four ways terrorists could use a nuclear device to strike targets in the United States.
The most devastating but improbable scenario involves a group stealing a fully functional bomb from a nuclear-armed country. Most nuclear experts point to Pakistan as the likeliest source, though that would require cooperation with someone on the inside of Pakistan’s military.
Easier to pull off would be for IS or another group to obtain fissile material like highly enriched uranium, then turn it into a crude nuclear device delivered by truck or ship.
A third possibility is that extremists could bomb an existing nuclear facility, such as the Belgian waste plant, spreading highly radioactive material over a wide area.
The most likely scenario that security experts fear is that a group could get ahold of radioactive material, such as cesium or cobalt, for a dirty bomb that could be carried in a suitcase. Those materials are widely used in industrial, academic and hospital settings, with no consistent security standards across the globe. Last year, an Associated Press investigation revealed multiple attempts by black market smugglers to sell radioactive material to Middle East extremists.
Curiously, the White House report specifically mentioned Cesium as a possible radioactive material that can be used to manufacture a dirty bomb – the very same material gunmen stole in Mexico.
While many Americans continue to either bury their heads in the sand or marginalize those who warn of the possibility of Chemical, Biological, Radiologicial, or Nuclear (CBRN) attacks against domestic targets, the threat is obviously real. We need look only to Europe as evidence. When terrorists attacked Brussels earlier this year we also learned that a nuclear power plant was targeted, with those involved having gone so far as to track and record the director of that plant in the hopes they could compromise its security and cause a regional and devastating nuclear disaster. Further, European officials have already confirmed that CBRN weapons have been smuggled into Europe.
Does anyone think that America is immune?
In a recent address President Obama encouraged Americans to prepare for a major disaster, suggesting that Americans should have disaster supplies like emergency food on hand to mitigate such a crisis should it ever come to pass.
Given that we know terrorists are now crossing the border into the United States and that their goal is to cause maximum damage in any way possible, perhaps the President should have also suggested to the public that they acquire CBRN-rated protective equipment to prepare for what appears to be an inevitable scenario.