Coming to a City Near You: Islamic Terrorism

I often hear arguments in support of bringing in tens of thousands of Syrian refugees with no mention of the words “terrorist,” “Muslim,” “Islam,” “jihad,” or “Paris” by the proponent. It is a bizarre notion that one can dishonestly make the humanitarian case for helping Syrians forced from their homes during a civil war while ignoring the security risks for the potential host nation.

Accompanying this debate is always the disgraceful accusation that those who raise national security concerns are actually aiding and abetting the terrorists in their recruitment of future jihadists.  Those of us who question the PC/Obama meme are used to being called Islamophobes. But now we are labeled inciters. Tomorrow we will likely be labeled jihadists ourselves as the narrative morphs in the direction of the 9/11 conspiracy theorists who blamed that catastrophe on America’s immorality rather than the Islamist murderers.

In a recent panel discussion on the topic featuring experts from various international refugee organizations, a spokesperson from the International Crisis Group berated the rhetoric of anyone having the audacity to suggest that we should not be welcoming these people with open arms.  He stated unequivocally that those of us with reservations are actually encouraging Muslims to join ISIS. This accusation is a canard.

Presumably the roomful of attendees who seemingly nodded their heads in agreement had already been brainwashed by Obama, who accused Republicans of fearing “3-year old orphans” proclaiming, “I cannot think of a more potent recruitment tool for ISIL than some of the rhetoric that’s coming out of here during the course of this debate.”

He should have just ended his sentence after the phrase “I cannot think.” For this idiocy is not just coming from the guy who promised Americans, “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor. If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan." It is coming from the president who called ISIS the jayvee team and promised the morning of the Paris massacre that ISIS was “contained.”  It comes from the leader of the free world who has proclaimed over and over again that the greatest threat to mankind is climate change. And it was espoused by our Commander-in-Chief who released five al Qaeda operatives the day after the Paris massacres based on a false narrative that Gitmo serves as a terrorist recruitment tool. 

The person with the real fears is the one in the White House quivering in his mom jeans that something bad may happen in his last 14 months. Obama’s “Audacity of Hope” these days is that by not recognizing Islamic terrorists as a clear and present danger to the U.S., he will eke out the end of his term leaving his mess to his successor. Michael Makovsky  reasoned that it is Obama who has facilitated ISIS recruitment.

Not only has he waged a feeble, half-hearted battle (“war” would be too strong a word) against the Islamic States but he has de facto supported the Assad regime by choosing not to target its assets or even declare a no-fly zone to prevent it from dropping barrel bombs on civilians. He has denied real military support to moderate Syrian elements, driving opponents of the Assad regime into the arms of the only effective fighting force on the ground (outside the Kurdish areas): radical Islamist jihadi groups like IS. And he has ensured the further continuation of the sectarian death struggle between Sunni and Shia in Syria and Iraq by emboldening and enriching, via this summer’s nuclear deal, Iran…. By cutting the nuclear deal and aligning with Iran, staying cozy with the Shia government in Baghdad, and distancing itself from America’s traditional Sunni Arab allies, Obama has sent a signal to Sunnis in Iraq and Syria that we won’t protect them, leading many to feel like their only choice is to embrace the Islamic State.

One can reasonably argue that ISIS is Barack Obama’s creation, and, if anyone is responsible for the generation of ISIS it has been Obama and the Democrats who support his foreign policy (or lack thereof). One might argue that the Iraq War should not have been waged, but when George Bush left office it was a stable nation that was becoming a democracy and an American ally. Even Joe Biden had declared it to be so. Obama’s CIA Chief John Brennan said ISIS had been “decimated” under George Bush but had grown as much as 4,400 % under Barack Obama . If they were once a JayVee team in Obama’s eyes, he has been a great coach for them. They are past varsity level now. Mission accomplished, Barack.

Why should America once again have to pay for his mistakes? Why should Obama, who so often denigrates Americans, be allowed to portray us as inhumane? Mr. Selfie should look in the mirror.

Refugees have become political props in Obama’s arsenal to denigrate Republicans and other Americans who oppose his policies. If he actually cared about these people there are simple steps he could have taken but refused to do so to help them (see below).

But the Obama narrative subsists on the left. AT’s Ed Lasky appeared on a Chicago television show discussing the crisis during which Suzanne Sahloul of the Syrian Community Network proclaimed, “More and more people will be susceptible to ISIS groups if they are left unwanted.” The suggestion that unless the U.S. takes in 10,000 or more Syrian refugees, more of them will turn to terrorism belies common sense for a multitude of reasons and yet the leftists, who took off their thinking caps years ago, eat this garbage up.

Suzanne and others have used the examples of refugees needing and receiving medical care in America. Our medical system is straining to meet the needs of Americans. If we are concerned about the medical care of Syrian refugees maybe refugee supporters should donate to Doctors without Borders.

The question is not whether Americans should welcome 1,000, 10,000, or 100,000 Syrian refugees annually for humanitarian reasons. The issue is whether it is prudent for our government, endowed with the primary responsibility of ensuring the safety of the American people, to establish a refugee policy for individuals from the place where ISIS was birthed, that could very well lead to Paris-style attacks on our shores. 

In suggesting that Americans should not fear an influx of Syrian refugees, Sahloul stated, “Except for the Boston bombings we don’t have an incident where refugees actually have committed a crime in the United States.” Aside from its inaccuracy (in the past 18 months, more than 70 U.S. residents who were legally allowed to immigrate to the U.S. have been arrested and charged with helping or conspiring to help terrorist organizations including ISIS), I imagine that the victims of the Boston attack would find that statement reprehensible. How many attacks would it take for Sahloul and others to decide that the risk of more attacks is far too great? How many lives lost and limbs ripped from bodies does the left need to witness before common sense and caution take hold?

More tellingly, Somali refugees have been subject to the same so-called strict vetting process before being admitted as refugees into America.  What has been the result? They have become a terror problem residing within our borders.

Obama is making policy decisions based upon political calculations and personal ideology rather than national security.  The man hoping to add UN Secretary General to his resume is working with the former president of Socialist International, an organization seeking “one world Government” and redistribution of “third-world poverty to Western nations through mass immigration.” Like Obama, Antonio Guterres, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, believes that America must lead the effort to resettle the Syrians. And like Obama’s ISIS is “contained” statement, Guterres ignorantly stated two weeks before the Paris massacre, “I don’t think terrorists would be so stupid to be so effectively scrutinized to come to the United States” or Europe. These “experts” keep proving just how little know and how empty and self-serving their promises are.

Daniel Greenfield recently observed:

Sunni Muslims stopped being persecuted refugees the moment they set foot in Jordan or Turkey. Talk of resettling them in the United States or Europe has nothing to do with “persecution.” It’s economic migration. And economic migration in this case is a euphemism for welfare migration.

According to a report from the Center Immigration Studies, each Middle Eastern refugee costs taxpayers $64,370 for the first five years here.  This cost is 12 times the logical alternative of resettling the refugees in a Middle Eastern country. And in a letter to the Senate appropriations committee charged with funding this program, Senator Jeff Sessions, chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee’s Subcommittee on Immigration and the National Interest, noted that the cost of resettlement could exceed $55 billion due to the various entitlements they would receive including free healthcare, food stamps, and cash welfare.  Can America afford such costs?

Sessions also points out that for this cost, “refugees could be helped by establishing safe-zones in Syria or surrounding countries until displaced persons can be safely returned home.” Unfortunately, the Redistributionist-in-Chief would rather burden the U.S. economy than even consider creating safe sanctuaries (as Democrats love to do here for illegal immigrants) inside Syria that could have saved hundreds of thousands of lives, prevented the world’s worst refugee crisis, and helped prevent the rise of ISIS.

Democrat and Republican presidents have used the simple strategy of imposing no-fly zones and the creation of safe havens in the past in Bosnia (Clinton) and Iraq (Clinton and both President Bushes) with zero costs in American lives and with no boots on the ground. Obama, however, did not devote any time to reaching a Status of Force agreement with the Iraqis (too busy watching football and playing golf?), betraying our Sunni allies (at the time) and leaving them to be abused by the Shiite regime in Baghdad. Many joined or sympathized with ISIS because no one else was defending them. Obama, in his rush to empower Iran and the Shiites, had betrayed them. Obama is very good at one thing: betrayal.

Lest we forget, Obama had declared in 2007 that preventing genocide was not a good enough reason to stay in Iraq and, appallingly, went on to win the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009, shortly after his inauguration. Nice work, Norway.

Was Obama, our commander-in-chief and self-proclaimed “student of history,” ignorant of these easy options? Experts advised him to do so but, as Americans now know, experts are willfully ignored in the White House. As Obama famously said, he had no strategy against ISIS and it showed.  Well, ISIS had a strategy and they have executed it -- along with many thousands of people.

It seems that each day we learn of a new factoid making it clear that ISIS was not lying when it promised to infiltrate the West through refugee programs (nor was it lying when it released a video threatening attacks on NYC). In the past week or so we have learned that

  • Six Syrians intending to enter the U.S. with stolen Greek passports were arrested in Honduras
  • Eight Syrians were caught at our Texas border
  • Eight ISIS members were arrested by Turkey as they plotted to pose as refugees in the hopes of entering Europe
  • A female suicide bomber blew herself up in Paris last week (debunking claims that by focusing on bringing in women and children we avoid terrorists)
  • Three Syrians with fake IDs were detained in St. Maarten

We also know that

  • 72% of the refugees are males between the ages of 18-34
  • Despite clearing our extensive screening process, al Qaeda linked terrorists with American blood on their hands entered the U.S. through the Iraqi refugee program and settled in Kentucky; they were arrested after being caught trying to acquire heavy weapons.
  • A 2013 ABC News investigation revealed that several dozen suspected terrorists were likely mistakenly let in as Iraqi or Afghani refugees.

Former Ambassador Ryan Crocker, just days after the Paris massacre, penned a 700 word polemic in the Wall Street Journal urging the Obama administration to resettle 100,000 Syrian refugees over the next year.  Touting the White House mantra, Crocker promised a  “vigorous screening process” involving interviews from multiple agencies both here and abroad, claiming “no population entering the U.S. is more closely examined than refugees.”  He also asserted that the process could easily be hastened “by simply directing security agencies to devote more time and staff to the task.”  One need only look to the foldout of ObamaCare, the VA scandal, or the TSA’s incompetence in order to understand just how ridiculous that statement is. But others have jumped on board including one representative from the International Rescue Committee who literally gave a roomful her personal “guarantee” that “we won’t see any Syrian refugees committing terrorist acts here.”

While Obama trots out Ben Rhodes, Josh Ernst and others to reinforce the vigorous vetting mantra (much as he did with the random video mantra after Benghazi), the real experts beg to differ. 

  • FBI Director James Comey testified that the Iraqi database that allowed the Kentucky terrorists into the country was much more extensive than anything the FBI has for Syrian refugees.  He further stated that the government does not have the ability to conduct thorough background checks on all of the Syrian refugees that Obama says will be allowed into the country.

And so if someone has never made a ripple in the pond in Syria in a way that would get their identity or their interest reflected in our database, we can query our database until the cows come home, but there will be nothing to show up because we have no record of them.

  • Director of the National Intelligence Agency, James Clapper expressed a “huge concern” that ISIS militants might infiltrate the Syrian refugees thereby entering the U.S. and Europe.
  •  The president of the National Citizenship and Immigration Services Council that represents 12,000 immigration officials voiced his concern last year that the immigration system may be exploited by ISIS; “we are letting terrorists into the U.S. right through our front door.”
  • The leader of New York City’s Syrian community reported that ISIS terrorists have “absolutely” sneaked into the U.S. by posing as refugees and have joined sleeper cells just waiting to be activated. Commenting on the lack of an information database he stated, “In Syria, there’s no such thing. So when they tell you that [the refugees] are vetted, are you out of your mind?
  • Lebanon’s education minister warned that “two in every 100 Syrian migrants smuggled into Europe are ISIS-trained jihadists, sent under cover to attack targets in the West.

Obama is being dishonest with claims of rigorous vetting of refugees. The UNHCR is the entity performing the initial screening and recommending potential refugees. Investors Business Daily recently reported that the UNHCR is working with the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, “whose charter seeks to propagate ‘legitimate jihad’ and ‘the norms of Islamic Shari’ah.’” Furthermore, FBI Assistant Director Michael Steinbach explained, “all of the data sets – the police, the intel services – that normally you would go to see information don’t exist.” And a Greek police captain explained, “If they are not already registered in the database, it’s nearly impossible” to know that they exist among the refugees.

And recognizing the serious issue with regard to fake passports, Greenfield observed

We have held terrorists at Guantanamo Bay for a decade without ever learning their real names.

We put the ringleader of the World Trade Center bombing back on the street even though he had a fake passport because he was applying for political asylum. We ignored warnings about the Boston Marathon bombers and some of the 9/11 hijackers.

Other terrorists either slipping through the system or ignored during screening include Nidal Hasan, the Fort Hood jihadist, Kuwati Mohammod Youssuf Abdulazeeez who murdered four Marines in attacks in Tennessee last year, a Bosnian refugee couple who sought to buy military equipment for ISIS, and a 21 year old Somali born in a refugee camp in Kenya who arrived when he was nine years old. And as the case of Fazliddin Kurbanov, a terrorist refugee proves, radicalization of those prone to sympathize or support ISIS is one more reason to be concerned that screening cannot protect our nation from the dangers of Muslim immigration (a recent poll indicated that one in eight Syrian refugees hold “to some extent a positive view of ISIS)

Politicians on both sides of the aisle have also expressed concern. Congressman Peter King recognized “there is absolutely no way – no real way of vetting, to any extent, these refugees coming in.…” Congressman Michael McCaul recognized that “ISIS themselves have stated their intention to take advantage of the crisis to infiltrate the west.” Congressman Bennie Thompson raised his concern regarding “whether you have enough information available to you to do an accurate vetting.” Senator Chuck Schumer suggested that “a pause may be necessary” and Senator Dianne Feinstein advised examining “the role the visa process plays in security risks.” And with bipartisan support, the House easily passed a bill requiring more stringent screening requirements for Iraqi and Syrian refugees entering the U.S.

A common argument proffered by supporters of importing more Syrians compares their plight to those of Jews during the Holocaust but that is a false analogy. Ian Tuttle did a superb job of debunking this argument by noting several factors. The most obvious is that German Jews weren’t terrorists running around Munich, Berlin and Europe-at-large murdering innocents.  And unlike European Muslim populations, European Jews quickly assimilated into their host countries.  As Andrew McCarthy pointed out, given Muslim resistance to assimilation that we see in places like France and Belgium, “why would we voluntarily replicate it here?”

Perhaps most importantly, the Jews being annihilated in WW2 had no homeland to which to flee.  The vast majority of the Syrian refugees seeking to enter the U.S. have already found refuge in Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt and Iraq. Legally, they are not refugees. Practically, there are countries more suited to taking them in.

Why not call upon wealthy Arab oil states to absorb these immigrants (Saudi Arabia is huge) or at least donate billions of dollars to help them?

Logically, the risks for the U.S. to do so are high and make the Holocaust comparison appalling -- especially when long-dead  Jews are used by columnists such as the New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof and the Washington Post’s  Dana Milbank, who have never had a supportive word to write about Jews being murdered by Muslims in contemporary times.  The analogy is wrong -- and shameful.

Whether recognized as “welfare migration,” “immigration jihad,” or “stealth jihad,” one thing is clear. Succumbing to the calls of leftists to bring in Syrians en masse risks importing terrorists who seek to kill as many Americans has possible. Since 9/11 America has brought in over 1,500,000 immigrants and refugees from Muslim nations. There comes a point when America’s compassion is abused and runs the risk of becoming harmful, if not suicidal. All one has to do is look what has become of the Old World with its Muslim no-go zones, Sharia compliant areas, feckless foreign policy, welfare states and epidemics of terrorism to see our possible future.

As Paris illustrates, that risk is far too real and too great to ignore.  History books will look back upon America’s self-destruction (and that of Europe and the West more generally) in fascination that this once great civilization willfully allowed itself to be kidnapped by the progressive left through lies, intimidation, ignorance, and a lack of common sense.

Paris was a wake-up call. Will America awaken or slumber into disaster?