These evening I am writing a commentary that was not prompted by a relatively recent news report but rather is based on my increasing concerns that our nation is rapidly reaching a moment in history that may mark the time when our nation reached a “tipping point” and failed to take the appropriate actions to prevent a catastrophe.
I have provided you with the testimony that Janet Napolitano, the Secretary of DHS provided at a Senate hearing in March of 2009 in which she discussed her concerns and her agency’s efforts to deal with the incredible violence playing out daily in Mexico, the nation that shares a border with our country that runs over 2,200 miles. [click here]
I would suggest you read Secretary Napolitano’s testimony and then consider my commentary. You will notice that nearly everything she discussed in her testimony concerned with efforts of our government to contain the violence of Mexico in Mexico. You will also notice that she states that more than 230 American cities across our nation have been infested by members of the violent Mexican cartels. These cities can be found throughout the United States of America, literally from coast to coast and border to border. In my judgement is is absurd to believe that the solution to this extreme threat to our nation’s security and the lives of our citizens should focus nearly entirely on the border.
The fact that cities across our nation are infected by the potentially deadly disease of violence and corruption that now plagues Mexico to the point that Mexico stands on the precipice of becoming a “failed state” should wake up our nation’s leaders to get them to act within our nation as well as to finally secure our nations porous borders.
You will notice that in her prepared statement, DHS Secretary Napolitano talked about OCDETF (the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force). I spent the last ten years of my career with the INS assigned to that multiagency organization. We had a relative handful of INS special agents assigned to working on those major narcotics trafficking organizations even though most of the narcotics trafficking organizations involved foreign nationals (aliens) from countries all over the world.
Please notice that in that statement, while Ms Napolitano mentioned OCDETF she did not say a single word about beefing up that important organizations resources.
There was not a single word about hiring a single new agent to work on narcotics investigations within the United States.
When I was assigned to OCDETF from 1992 until 2002 we never had more than 15 INS Special Agents assigned to the New York office of that critically important organization!
We covered the entire southern half of the State of New York including the City of New York!
Once again this is about creating illusions. It has always been a magic act employing blue smoke and mirrors!
If our borders were secured and if the visa system and the immigration system had real integrity the vast majority of the aliens who are engaged in narcotics trafficking would never have been able to enter our country with their poisonous narcotics that is destroying so many American lives in so many ways.
When I was assigned to the Unified Intelligence Division of the New York Field Division of the DEA from 1988 until my promotion to Senior Special Agent and assigned to OCDETF, I decided to conduct an analysis of the individuals who were being arrested by the DEA. I discovered that in the New York City area, some 60% of the defendants arrested by the DEA and the DEA Task Force were identified as being “foreign born” while nationwide that statistic as some 30%. Those who were identified as being “foreign born” were not just from Mexico or even Latin America but came from the four corners of our planet.
They managed to get here and ply their “trades” in the drug trade. Some were engaged in smuggling drugs and/or aliens. Some were money launderers. Some were “enforcers.” All of them committed felonies in support of narcotics trafficking- often those felonies included murder. All too often the victims were not involved in the drug trade but were “in the wrong place at the wrong time.”
Sometimes the victim was a child caught in the cross fire of feuding drug dealers.
Sometimes the murder victim was a law enforcement officer.
As you probably know, I have made many appearances of many radio and television programs to discuss various aspects of the immigration crisis that confronts our nation.
Before his program was terminated, I appeared on “Lou Dobbs Tonight” dozens of times. Lou focused his attention on the immigration issue in segments he came to refer to as “Broken Borders.”
Television is largely a visual medium. Images are the stock and trade of television. The images of illegal aliens jumping the fences along our borders provided compelling visuals that accompanied the stories about our nation’s failures to secure its borders and create an immigration system that has integrity. Certainly there is no denying that those images provided clarity and were of great significance. However, running the border that is supposed to separate the United States from Mexico is only one of several ways in which aliens who are intent on entering our nation in violation of law accomplish this goal.
Illegal aliens also run our northern border that is supposed to separate the United States from Canada. Other illegal aliens gain entry into our country by stowing away of ships and jumping ship when the ship is moored in the harbor or at an anchorage.
It is also estimated that some 40% of the illegal aliens who are present in our country did not run our nation’s borders at all but actually submitted themselves to the inspections process by which aliens are interviewed by CBP (Customs and Border Protection) inspectors at ports of entry who determine whether or not to permit an alien to enter our country.
This is why I have often noted that any state that has a seaport or an international airport is also a border state!
Many of the aliens who enter our nation through ports of entry applied for and received visas prior to seeking entry into the United States. An alien who applies for a visa must fill out an application that contains a list of questions that pertain to the category of visa that alien is seeking and likely will require the alien who applies for a visa to provide supporting documents. There are two forms of visas. There are immigrant visas and nonimmigrant visas.
An immigrant visa enables the alien to enter our nation and immediately receive a “Green Card” and places that alien immediately on the pathway to United States citizenship. Last year more than 1.1 million such aliens entered our nation. This number of immigrants admitted by the United States is greater than the total number of immigrants admitted by all of the other nations on our planet, combined! These visas are generally broken into four broad categories- aliens who qualify for resident alien status because of a familial relationship, aliens who have specialized skills, aliens who make investments in a business in the United States and finally, aliens who are admitted through “Diversity Lottery.”
A nonimmigrant visa is supposed to enable an alien to enter our country for a limited period of time to engage in a personal visit to meet with family members, sightsee or otherwise visit the United States for noncommercial purposes. Other categories of temporary visas include visas issued to students, exchange program participants, journalists, corporate employees, and various other temporary workers.
A visa can be thought of as being a “contract” that requires the alien who is admitted into the United States lives up to his lawful terms of admission into the United States.
Aliens who lie on the applications for visas of any category are committing felonies if their lies are of a material nature, meaning that they would not have qualified for the visas they applied for if the truth had been known. This crime is broadly referred to as “Visa fraud.”
Here is the actual statute concerning this violation of law.
18 USC Sec. 1546 01/05/2009
TITLE 18 – CRIMES AND CRIMINAL PROCEDURE
PART I – CRIMES
CHAPTER 75 – PASSPORTS AND VISAS
Sec. 1546. Fraud and misuse of visas, permits, and other documents
(a) Whoever knowingly forges, counterfeits, alters, or falsely
makes any immigrant or nonimmigrant visa, permit, border crossing
card, alien registration receipt card, or other document prescribed
by statute or regulation for entry into or as evidence of
authorized stay or employment in the United States, or utters,
uses, attempts to use, possesses, obtains, accepts, or receives any
such visa, permit, border crossing card, alien registration receipt
card, or other document prescribed by statute or regulation for
entry into or as evidence of authorized stay or employment in the
United States, knowing it to be forged, counterfeited, altered, or
falsely made, or to have been procured by means of any false claim
or statement, or to have been otherwise procured by fraud or
unlawfully obtained; or
Whoever, except under direction of the Attorney General or the
Commissioner of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, or
other proper officer, knowingly possesses any blank permit, or
engraves, sells, brings into the United States, or has in his
control or possession any plate in the likeness of a plate designed
for the printing of permits, or makes any print, photograph, or
impression in the likeness of any immigrant or nonimmigrant visa,
permit or other document required for entry into the United States,
or has in his possession a distinctive paper which has been adopted
by the Attorney General or the Commissioner of the Immigration and
Naturalization Service for the printing of such visas, permits, or
Whoever, when applying for an immigrant or nonimmigrant visa,
permit, or other document required for entry into the United
States, or for admission to the United States personates another,
or falsely appears in the name of a deceased individual, or evades
or attempts to evade the immigration laws by appearing under an
assumed or fictitious name without disclosing his true identity, or
sells or otherwise disposes of, or offers to sell or otherwise
dispose of, or utters, such visa, permit, or other document, to any
person not authorized by law to receive such document; or
Whoever knowingly makes under oath, or as permitted under penalty
of perjury under section 1746 of title 28, United States Code,
knowingly subscribes as true, any false statement with respect to a
material fact in any application, affidavit, or other document
required by the immigration laws or regulations prescribed
thereunder, or knowingly presents any such application, affidavit,
or other document which contains any such false statement or which
fails to contain any reasonable basis in law or fact –
Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 25
years (if the offense was committed to facilitate an act of
international terrorism (as defined in section 2331 of this
title)), 20 years (if the offense was committed to facilitate a
drug trafficking crime (as defined in section 929(a) of this
title)), 10 years (in the case of the first or second such offense,
if the offense was not committed to facilitate such an act of
international terrorism or a drug trafficking crime), or 15 years
(in the case of any other offense), or both.
(b) Whoever uses –
(1) an identification document, knowing (or having reason to
know) that the document was not issued lawfully for the use of
(2) an identification document knowing (or having reason to
know) that the document is false, or
(3) a false attestation,
for the purpose of satisfying a requirement of section 274A(b) of
the Immigration and Nationality Act, shall be fined under this
title, imprisoned not more than 5 years, or both.
(c) This section does not prohibit any lawfully authorized
investigative, protective, or intelligence activity of a law
enforcement agency of the United States, a State, or a subdivision
of a State, or of an intelligence agency of the United States, or
any activity authorized under title V of the Organized Crime
Control Act of 1970 (18 U.S.C. note prec. 3481).(!1) For purposes
of this section, the term “State” means a State of the United
States, the District of Columbia, and any commonwealth, territory,
or possession of the United States.
It is important to note that some 36 countries now participate in the Visa Waiver Program which enables aliens from those countries to seek entry into the United States for up to 90 days as nonimmigrants for purposes of tourism. Greece, as I have noted on a number of occasions just joined this list of countries in March of this year, even though that country is in an economic state of free-fall! It is important to realize that n alien who seeks entry into the United States under the auspices of the Visa Waiver Program cannot be punished for committing visa fraud because he does not need a visa in order to seek admission into our country!
Something else worth noting is the fundamental fact the alien who is issued a visa is not automatically guaranteed entry into the United States. The CBP inspector retains the authority to deny an alien entry into the United States if, during the inspections process, becomes aware of a statutory reason to deny an alien entry. If an alien lies to a CBP inspector in order to enter the United States and it can be subsequently proved that an alien who entered our country lied when he (she) completed his application for a visa or lied to an inspector at a port of entry, that alien would then become deportable (removable) from the United States. (Any alien who is inadmissible at the time of entry into the United States becomes deportable (removable) any time thereafter. (This last point is of extreme importance. We are often told that the 19 terrorists who attacked our nation on September 11, 2001 were all “legally present” in the United States. In point of fact, they had all committed visa fraud and lied to the inspectors who admitted them into the United States. None of them would have been given visas or would have been admitted into the United States by the inspectors of the former INS who admitted them, had all relevant facts been known.)
On May 11, 2006 I testified before the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations of the House or Representatives’ Committee on International Relations on the topic:
CAN WE BAR THE TERRORIST DOOR?”
Here is the transcript of that hearing in its entirety:
Incredibly according to a number of news reports Immigration and Customs Enforcement a division of DHS, an agency I have come to refer to as the Department of Homeland Surrender, has all of 272 special agents seeking to locate more than four million illegal aliens who were admitted into the United States via the inspections process and then either overstayed their visits in the United States or otherwise violated the terms of their admission by seeking unauthorized employment, failing to show up for a job they were admitted to do or were convicted of committing serious crimes.
I was recently interviewed by Casey Wian, a CNN journalist who has been covering the immigration issue for many years. Casey has interviewed me a number of times over the past several years so that I could provide my perspectives on various aspects of the immigration crisis confronting our nation. Here is the link to video of that news report that aired this past Memorial Day weekend in which I briefly appear:
As an INS special agent I encountered aliens in New York who had entered our in every way you could imagine. They ran the borders, they stowed away on ships, they committed visa fraud, they used false documents, they hid in vehicles being driven across our nation’s borders. One way or another, they made their way to New York. The same can be said of the illegal aliens to be found throughout our nation.
What I want Ms Napolitano and our nation’s “leaders” to tell not me- but every American they are supposed to protect is what is being done to root out narcotics traffickers who are living and working in our country in every state of this nation?
I want Chuck Schumer, the Chairman of the Senate Immigration Subcommittee to explain why he would provide tens of millions of illegal aliens with lawful status in our country and official identity documents even though there would be absolutely no reliable way of knowing the true identities of these tens of millions of illegal aliens? I want the Presdient of the United States, Mr. Schumer and the other advocates for Comprehensive Immigration Reform to provide us with the methodology they will employ to determine what names he would imprint on the identity documents that he would provide those tens of millions of illegal aliens whose names, nationalities, criminal histories in their home countries and possible affiliation with criminal and/or terrorist organizations is unknown and unknowable.
I have often made the point that the only thing worse than no security is false security. Would it not constitute a false security to provide tens of millions of illegal aliens whose true identities are unknown and unknowable with an official identity document that may well conceal their true identities- especially if it turns out that their true names are on terrorist watch lists?
Providing an illegal alien with an authentic identity document when that person’s true identity is unknown and unknowable creates the very real possibility that our own government will be aiding and abetting s criminal who is guilty of criminal impersonation- a crime under most state statutes that deem it a crime if an individual creates a false identity to acquire something he would otherwise not be eligible for!
Focusing on the border of the United States while the violence in Mexico continues to escalate along with the body count, and not consider the very real possibility that the violence we are witnessing with a great sense of horror may soon play out in cities across our nation because to the “leaders” of our country, the promise of votes and campaign contributions are more important that national security or the lives of our citizens!
If ever there was any doubt about the priorities of the administration on our nation’s leaders, I want you to give some thought to the lawsuit filed by the United States Department of Justice against Governor Jan Brewer and her state for daring to take our nation’s immigration laws seriously! Her state is the “poster child” for violence perpetrated by those who violate our nation’s borders and laws, carrying an average of a kidnapping and/or home invasion each and every day in just one city in that beleaguered state- Phoenix.
Yet the Attorney General saw fit to sue the state of Arizona for trying to combat drug related violence which, it should be noted, most often focused on the immigrants of that state, while telling states and cities that practice “sanctuary” policies of utterly ignoring immigration laws that are supposed to protect our nation and our citizens from the transnational criminal and terrorist organizations that the federal government will not seek any action against them for ignoring these important laws that, when properly enforced, can be an extremely effective tool to provide national security and community safety!
Politicians who claim they are attempting to secure our nation by focusing on the border and ignoring all of the other critically important components of what should be a unified system are either liars or fools! In either event they do not belong in charge of anything!
Ignoring the various components of what should be a coordinated program of the enforcement of the immigration laws from within the interior of the United States including the need to make serious efforts to combat immigration fraud, will doom any efforts to protect our nation to fail. I fear that this failure will lead to extreme carnage at the hands of terrorists and drug traffickers such as we are witnessing just south of El Paso, Texas in Juarez, Mexico.
Ignoring the interior enforcement missions is comparable to attempting to play baseball and not permit your outfielders take up their defensive positions when the opposing team is at bat. Any opposing player who could hit the ball over the infielders’ heads would get an automatic “in the park” home run!
Where national security and the lives of our citizens are concerned however, this is anything but a game!
It is time for the politicians in Washington to live up to their oaths of office as well!
They must take to heart the statements made by the union leaders who represent the employes of Immigration and Custom Enforcement and do whatever is necessary to address these massive deficiencies as quickly and effectively as possible. The security of our nation and the safety of our citizens must, without equivocation take priority over any political goals or agenda.
It is unacceptable that the citizens of this nation be alienated by their own government especially where border security and the enforcement and administration of our nation’s immigration laws are concerned!
A country without secure borders can no more stand than can a house without walls!
November 2nd cannot come fast enough!
We the People, throughout this nation must seek opportunities to make it clear to our political “representatives” that we understand their game plan and won’t tolerate it!.
I believe our nation’s is greatly benefited by the rich diversity of our people which is why I could never imagine living anywhere except New York City, arguably the most diverse city in our nation if not, in fact, the world. However, my idea of diversity most certainly does not include members of MS-13, the Mexican drug cartels and members of al-Qaeda!
If reading this makes it difficult for you to sleep now- perhaps you could do something worthwhile- perhaps you might spend a couple of your sleepless hours writing letters to your elected representatives this evening and remind them that Election Day is just months away!
We the People can add to the consternation of these politicians who are failing to live up to their oaths of office by contacting them and making it abundantly clear that election day is coming and they should think of election day as their personal “Day of Reckoning!”
Our government must live up to its obligation of protecting its own citizens and, indeed, all who are present in our country from the criminals and terrorists who would threaten our lives and the survival of our nation and our way of life. In the end, the government is actually those who are elected to act as our “leaders.” Those who fail to truly lead and look out for those they are supposed to represent, need to be sent packing this coming Election Day!
If our country is to survive and if our children and their children are to get their share of the “American Dream” the citizens of this nation must take their citizenship seriously!
We the People must be the best citizens we can be, citizens who are worthy of the gallantry demonstrated by our valiant men and women in the military, law enforcement and firefighters, who routinely go in harm’s way in defense of this nation and our citizens.
My goal in writing this and other commentaries is to point out our nations many failings before more victims pay the ultimate price for the incompetence and ineptitude of our government.
The first step in problem-solving is to first identify the problems and vulnerabilities and then devise strategies to overcome them.
Any politician who refuses to work to secure our borders and create an immigration system that has integrity is either corrupt or too dumb to keep his (her) job. Any politician, irrespective of party affiliation who favors Comprehensive Immigration Reform and the outrageous betrayal that this would represent given the national security implications that this program would have, should be shown the door at the next election!
If you find yourself to be in agreement with this commentary, I ask that you forward it to as many of your friends and family members as possible and encourage them to do the same. We need to create a “Bucket Brigade of Truth!”
Later this year, each and every member of the House of Representatives is up for reelection. Later this year more than one third of the members of the United States Senate will have to face their constituents. They need to be reminded that they work for us, We the People!
However, the practice of good citizenship does not end in the voting booth, it only begins there.
The large scale apathy demonstrated by citizens of this nation has emboldened elected representatives to all but ignore the needs of the average American citizen in a quest for massive campaign funds and the promises of votes to be ostensibly delivered by special interest groups. There is much that we cannot do but there is one thing that We the People absolutely must do- we must stop sitting on the sidelines!
The collective failure of We the People to get involved in make our concerns known to our politicians have nearly made the concerns of the great majority of the citizens of this nation all but irrelevant to the politicians.I implore you to get involved!
If this situation concerns you or especially if it angers you, I ask you to call your Senators and Congressional “Representative. This is not only your right- it is your obligation!
All I ask is that you make it clear to our politicians that we are not as dumb as they hope we are!
We live in a perilous world and in a perilous era. The survival of our nation and the lives of our citizens hang in the balance.
This is neither a Conservative issue, nor is it a Liberal issue- simply stated, this is most certainly an AMERICAN issue!
You are either part of the solution or you are a part of the problem!
Democracy is not a spectator sport!
Lead, follow or get out of the way!