Terrorists and Drug Cartel Members Game Political Asylum System as Reported By ABC News and Washington Times

Hi Gang:

On November 20, 2013 ABC News ran an extensive news report about how terrorists gamed the political asylum program to enter the United States and hide themselves in plain sight.  I wrote an extensive commentary about the ABC News article and then I was sent a copy of a press release that was  posted by Congressman Goodlatte, the Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee announcing that the House Judiciary Committee was now planning to conduct a hearing, before year’s end, into the lack of integrity to the political asylum program.  
The ABC News report was extremely disconcerting but I did find Chairman Goodlatte’s press release to be encouraging.
I was stunned to find out, however, that the predication for his press release and plans to conduct a hearing into fraud in the political asylum program was not the ABC News report or anything relating to the issue of terrorists succeeding in gaming the political asylum program, but a Novmeber 21, 2013 Washington Times news report about how apparent members of the Mexican drug cartels had been discovered living in the United States who had articulated claims of “credible fear!”
I realized that both groups of apparent “fraudsters” needed to be brought to your attention so, I am attaching the original document I wrote about the ABC News report immediately below:

I then went on to write a commentary for CAPS (Californians for Population Stabilization) that addresses both news reports.
Here is this report:

I have also attached both documents to the bottom of this e-mail.  While I cited numerous examples of a lack of integrity to the process by which applications for a wide array of immigration benefits plague the adjudications process, this list is hardly all-inclusive.
As you read these documents I want you to consider that there is absolutely nothing in the Senate Immigration bill S. 744 that would do anything to address the issue of immigration benefit fraud even though this issue was the focus of the 9/11 Commission in seeking to determine how the terrorists were able to enter the United States and then embed themselves in the United States.  Here we are not only talking about the nineteen hijackers who so savagely attacked the United States on September 11, 2001 but other terrorists as well.
The “8 Gangsters” as I have come to refer to the “Gang of Eight” who foisted S.744 on us had to know that they were actually betraying national security and beleaguered American workers who would have found millions – indeed likely tens of millions of workers competing unfairly with them for jobs that are already in far too short a supply across a broad economic spectrum including middle class highly educated workers.
Instead of this inane and indeed insane arguments about caring for foreign workers and those who seek to hammer the Middle Class into oblivion and make of the Middle Class American worker an exhibition in the Museum of Natural History next to the Dodo birds and saber-toothed tigers, we should be discussing how our borders should truly be secured against illegal entry of aliens whose presence would pose a threat to national security and the safety and well being of Americans. 
Our government should be as conscientious to not only secure our borders but make certain that the adjudications process has real integrity in accordance with the findings and recommendations of the 9/11 Commission.  When airplanes crash, the NTSB, FAA and others descend upon the smoking wreckage to figure out what went wrong to do whatever it takes to prevent another disaster.  The 9/11 Commission Report and the 9/11 Commission Staff Report on Terrorist Travel should be the starting point for any discussion by our alleged “political representatives” before anyone writes down any “reforms” for the immigration system.
Think of the controversy surrounding the NSA and its far-flung surveillance programs.  This is not the time to argue the pros or cons of that, but it is the time to demand that the immigration system be made to live up to its mission of protecting innocent lives and the jobs of American workers!
Any politician who does not think that the constituents he or she was elected to represent should be the first consideration in addressing the many failures of the immigration system should be sent packing at the next election!
It is time for We the People to stop playing defense and start playing offense- before, God forbid, there is another terror attack committed on American soil killing and maiming still more Americans.  It is time to go on offense before millions of foreign workers are provided with the right to displace American workers and drive down the wages of those workers fortunate enough to still have a job!
I am not about to get into the issue of Obama Care, but I do have to make the point that just as we were told that “If you like your insurance you can keep it and if you like your doctor you can keep him (her)”  Passage of Comprehensive Immigration Reform would likely mean that if you like your job, you probably won’t be able to keep it!  Competition would be amped up by millions of potential competing foreign workers. The only thing “exceptional” about these foreign workers is that they will work for exceptionally low wages!
With all of the foregoing in mind, What could possibly go wrong?!

Immigration is not a single issue but a singular issue that impacts nearly every challenge and threat confronting the United States today!  
Simply stated, the immigration laws were enacted to save lives and protect the jobs of American workers.

It is not “Anti-Immigrant” to be Pro-American!

Our armed forces are charged with securing America’s borders externally while the DHS is supposed to secure those same borders from within.  The failures of the DHS to live up to its half of the equation are undermining the efforts, valor and incredible sacrifices of Americas men and women who serve in our military!

If our government’s failures to protect American jobs by securing our nation’s borders and effectively enforcing our immigration laws 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!


-michael cutler- 

Please check out my website:

http://www.michaelcutler.net/

       

On Friday evenings from 7:00 PM until 8:00 PM Eastern Time, I host my show, “The Michael Cutler Hour” on the USA Talk Radio Network on Blog Talk Radio.

Call in and join the conversation!  The phone number is 310-982-4145

I hope you will be listening!  (Please tell your friends and neighbors!)

Here is a link to the program:

http://www.usaradionetwork.com/cutler.htm


“Political Asylum Fraud: Where America’s Compassion Becomes a Vulnerability”

Michael W. Cutler, Senior Special Agent, INS (Ret.)

Senior Fellow, Californians for Population Stabilization


America has a long and well-established reputation for providing safe haven for vulnerable people from around the world. This is the concept behind the political asylum program. It is a vital program that all Americans should be proud of.

However, because of pervasive failures of USCIS to detect fraud and pursue those who game the political asylum program, it has become one of the preferred means for terrorists and criminals to enter the United States and embed themselves enabling them to hide in plain sight.

On November 20, 2013 ABC News reported on how it is feared that at least dozens of terrorists may have successfully gamed the political asylum program and are now living in towns and cities across the United States. This potentially poses a threat to national security, public safety. American soldiers who served in the Middle East may be targeted for attack by some of these terrorists in the United States.

The title of the ABC News report is self-explanatory:

Exclusive: US May Have Let ‘Dozens’ of Terrorists Into Country As Refugees”

On November 21, 2013 the Washington Times reported on how members of the Mexican Drug Trafficking Organizations (DTO’s) have taken to the same tactic of making false claims of credible fear as a means of entering the United States and all too often, continuing to perpetrate crimes related to their drug trafficking activities. The title of this important report is also self-explanatory:

Mexican drug cartels exploit asylum system by claiming ‘credible fear’

It would be disturbing enough if these two stories were unusual or unique, however, the immigration benefits program is devoid of meaningful integrity and has been for decades.

The Social Contract” recently published my article in its Summer, 2013 edition, on how fraud in the political asylum program currently enables our enemies to see in America’s compassion, weakness. The title of my article was:

“Political Asylum: Where Compassion and National Security Intersect”

The predication for my piece was the terrorist attacks conducted by the Tsarnaev brothers at the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013. According to publicly available information, they had been granted political asylum in the United States, apparently claiming “credible fear” that they would face persecution, or perhaps worse, if they were to return to their native Russia. Published reports indicated that subsequent to being granted to political asylum they did, nevertheless, travel to Russia of their own volition.

On May 2, 2013 I was interviewed by Megyn Kelly of Fox News to discuss the immigration aspects of this same case. Fox News posted a video of the interview on its website with the title:

“Immigration Expert: The System Failed in Boston and Keeps on Failing”

This is not a new problem, on July 13, 2011 the Washington Times published a truly disturbing article:

Visas reviewed to find those who overstayed / Aim is to find any would-be terrorists

In point of fact, the 9/11 Commission Report and the The 9/11 Commission Staff Report on Terrorist Travel cited immigration benefit fraud and fraud committed in the political asylum program as creating opportunities for terrorists to enter the United States and embed themselves in the United States.

This paragraph is found on page 98 of the “9/11 Commission Staff Report On Terrorist Travel” under the title “Immigration Benefits:”

Terrorists in the 1990s, as well as the September 11 hijackers, needed to find a way to stay in or embed themselves in the United States if their operational plans were to come to fruition. As already discussed, this could be accomplished legally by marrying an American citizen, achieving temporary worker status, or applying for asylum after entering. In many cases, the act of filing for an immigration benefit sufficed to permit the alien to remain in the country until the petition was adjudicated. Terrorists were free to conduct surveillance, coordinate operations, obtain and receive funding, go to school and learn English, make contacts in the United States, acquire necessary materials, and execute an attack.

Criminals and Terrorists are strategists who understand that to be successful in their criminal and pernicious pursuits, they need to be able to gain whatever advantages they can to not only attain their goals but to avoid detection and apprehension.

When I was a new INS special agent, one of the veteran agents who took the new agents under his wing, told us to “Never forget that when a cop (or agent) is chasing a bad guy, the cop is running for a paycheck but the bad guy was running for his life!”

International terrorists and transnational criminals, are certainly well-motivated to learn how to successfully game the immigration system. However successfully gaming this system has become all too easy.

Fraud is a major vulnerability that compromises the entire adjudications process of which political asylum is but one of the many applications processed by USCIS. This beleaguered agency would be responsible for administering Comprehensive Immigration Reform. If it cannot deal with its overwhelming workload now, adding unknown millions of amnesty applications to this agency’s workload would cause that agency to implode. This would be devastating to national security.

Fortunately on November 22, 2013 Representative Bob Goodlatte, the Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, issued a press release in which he announced plans to conduct a hearing into the lack of integrity in the process by which applications for political asylum are adjudicated.

This would be a good start.





ABC News: “Exclusive: US May Have Let ‘Dozens’ of Terrorists Into Country As Refugees”

Michael W. Cutler, Senior Special Agent, INS (Ret.)

Senior Fellow, Californians for Population Stabilization


Congress has apparently called a “time out” in the headlong rush to provide unknown millions of illegal aliens with lawful status and, of necessity, identity documents even though there have been a long list of extremely worrying reports that make it clear that there is little, if any, integrity to the process by which aliens are vetted by the State Department and by the relevant component agencies of the DHS that are intimately involved with the enforcement and administration of the immigration laws. It is important to remember that the immigration laws were enacted to protect innocent lives and the jobs of American workers.

It must be presumed that once Congress reconvenes that the efforts to once again enact Comprehensive Immigration Reform will resume.

Recently members of the Republican leadership in Congress stated that they would not be willing to provide illegal aliens with pathways to United States citizenship but “only” authority to work in the United States. Two points need to be made about this concept. First of all, these aliens would be permitted to compete, on an equal standing, with American workers who are unable to find jobs already. How would dumping millions of newly authorized workers into that overflowing labor pool help America or Americans? How would the additional remittances that these newly authorized foreign workers would send out of the United States help our struggling economy? Last year, it is estimated, that more than $200 billion was wired from the United States to the countries from which foreign workers- by both legally employed and illegally employed aliens.

Second, and at least as important, is the fact that in order to provide these millions of illegal aliens with employment authorization USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) would have to provide them with official identity documents. This creates a huge national security danger for the United States as you will see.

On November 20, 2013 ABC News issued a report about the fatally flawed refugee program that, to take a phrase out of the title of the report, “…May Have Let ‘Dozens’ of Terrorists Into Country As Refugees.” My commentary is predicated on that report and the full title of that report is being used as the title for my commentary today.

The nexus between the “lawful” immigration system and national security concerns has been duly reported and noted in the 9/11 Commission Report and in Congressional testimony by a long list of government experts including high ranking members of the FBI and other such agencies. This system t includes the issuance of visas and the adjudication of applications for permitting aliens to attend school or work in the United States as nonimmigrants or to be accorded refugee status via the political asylum program, be granted lawful immigrant status or become United States citizens via the naturalization process.

The 9/11 Commission Staff Report on Terrorist Travel detailed numerous examples of instances where terrorists not only made use of visa and immigration benefit fraud to enter the United States but to also embed themselves in the United States. Page 47 of this report noted:

Once terrorists had entered the United States, their next challenge was to find a way to remain here. Their primary method was immigration fraud. For example, Yousef and Ajaj concocted bogus political asylum stories when they arrived in the United States. Mahmoud Abouhalima, involved in both the World Trade Center and landmarks plots, received temporary residence under the Seasonal Agricultural Workers (SAW) program, after falsely claiming that he picked beans in Florida.

This paragraph is found on page 98 under the title “Immigration Benefits:”

Terrorists in the 1990s, as well as the September 11 hijackers, needed to find a way to stay in or embed themselves in the United States if their operational plans were to come to fruition. As already discussed, this could be accomplished legally by marrying an American citizen, achieving temporary worker status, or applying for asylum after entering. In many cases, the act of filing for an immigration benefit sufficed to permit the alien to remain in the country until the petition was adjudicated. Terrorists were free to conduct surveillance, coordinate operations, obtain and receive funding, go to school and learn English, make contacts in the United States, acquire necessary materials, and execute an attack.

In point of fact, I have voiced my own concerns about these flaws and vulnerabilities in many of the more than one dozen Congressional hearings at which I have testified, going back to my very first appearance before a Congressional hearing on May 20, 1997 when the House Immigration Subcommittee conducted a hearing into VISA FRAUD AND IMMIGRATION BENEFITS APPLICATION FRAUD

It is ironic that while that hearing was predicated on two terrorist attacks committed on U.S. soil in 1993, first in January by Amil Kansi, a native of Pakistan and applicant for political asylum who fired an AK-47 being driven into the CIA HQ parking lot in Virginia, killing two CIA officers and wounding 3 others and then the next month when, on February 26th six innocent people were killed, more than one thousand were injured and an estimated one-half billion dollars in damages were inflicted on the World Trace Center Complex involving aliens from the Middle East who had gamed the visa process and the immigation benefits program, including the 1986 Amnesty program and the political asylum program, that the date of the hearing was almost precisely between those terror attacks of 1993 and the terror attacks of 9/11. The vulnerabilities that were discussed at that hearing were never truly addressed, leaving the door literally and figuratively open to the attacks that would follow more than four years later.

The quarterly publication, “The Social Contract” recently published my article in its Summer, 2013 edition, on how fraud in the political asylum program, a program of which I am a staunch supporter provided that its severe integrity issues be effectively addressed, currently enables our enemies to see in America’s compassion, weakness. The title of my article was:

“Political Asylum: Where Compassion and National Security Intersect”

The springboard for my piece was the terrorist attacks conducted by the Tsarnaev brothers at the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013. According to publicly available information, they had been granted political asylum in the United States, apparently claiming “credible fear” that they would face persecution, or perhaps worse, if they were to return to their native Russia. Published reports indicated that subsequent to being granted to political asylum they did, nevertheless, travel to Russia of their own volition, calling into question the bona fides of their claims of credible fear.

On May 2, 2013 I was interviewed by Megyn Kelly of Fox News to discuss the immigration aspects of this case. Fox News posted a video of the interview on its website with the title:

“Immigration Expert: The System Failed in Boston and Keeps on Failing”

What is utterly unfathomable is that with all of these hearings and all of the statements and, indeed the findings of the nexus between immigration fraud including fraud committed in the political asylum program as noted in both 9/11 Commission Report and the 9/11 Commission Staff Report on Terrorist Travel. Absolutely less than nothing was done to address this vulnerability in the Senate’s immigration bill, S. 744. In fact, under the aegis of this supremely wrong-headed program, unknown millions of illegal aliens would be provided with lawful status and identity documents. These are aliens who evaded the inspections process that is supposed to prevent the entry of among other categories of aliens whose presence would be damaging or dangerous to America and Americans are criminals, spies, terrorists, war criminals and human rights violators.

There would be no way to conduct in-person interviews of these illegal aliens and no resources to conduct field investigations to determine the truthfulness of material facts provided by the applicants in their applications. Adjudications officers would be “under the gun” to approve the vast majority of these applications because they will need to keep up with the flood of applications landing on their desks each and every day. An application can be approved in minutes while a denial requires hours, days or, in some instances, weeks to justify. Simply stated, there would be no way for the bureaucratic conveyor belt to keep up with the onslaught of applications. In point of fact, USCIS, the beleaguered, inept or overburdened agency that would be tasked with dealing with the nightmare already processes more than 6 million applications each year.

On Friday evenings I host a BlogTalk radio program, “The Michael Cutler Hour” and often invite guests to discuss important issues. On July 27, 2012 my guest was Jerry Casale, a former colleague at the INS who recently retired from USCIS as an Adjudications Officer at Headquarters. Our discussion focused on the plight of the the adjudicators who were expected to keep up with the backlog of applications.

The topic generated so much interest that I invited Jerry back for a follow-up interview on April 5, 2013.

On July 30, 2013 the Washington Times published a truly disturbing report:

Homeland Security loses track of 1 million foreigners; report could hurt immigration deal

Here is how this important report begins:

The Homeland Security Department has lost track of more than 1 million people who it knows arrived in the U.S. but who it cannot prove left the country, according to an audit Tuesday that also found the department probably won’t meet its own goals for deploying an entry-exit system. The findings were revealed as Congress debates an immigration bill, and the Government Accountability Office’s report could throw up another hurdle because lawmakers in the House and Senate have said that any final deal must include a workable system to track entries and exits and cut down on so-called visa overstays.

The government does track arrivals, but is years overdue in setting up a system to track departures — a goal set in a 1996 immigration law and reaffirmed in 2004, but which has eluded Republican and Democratic administrations.

It is interesting to note that the focus of the report was how this failure to track the departure of one million foreign visitors might adversely impact Comprehensive Immigration Reform yet it blithely failed to note that what is of greater importance is that the failure to track the departure of one million nonimmigrant visitors poses a threat to national security! Remember, the implementation of an effective tracking system, known as US-VISIT, was a key mandate of the 9/11 Commission!

Here is a somewhat different title that I would have given the story: “Homeland Security loses track of 1 million foreigners: America’s national security seriously compromised.”

Going back to the focus of the Washington Times article and the fact that one million aliens have gone missing- this is not a new problem. In fact, On May 11, 2006 I testified before the House Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations of the Committee on International Relations on the topic:

“VISA OVERSTAYS: CAN WE BAR THE TERRORIST DOOR?”

In May, 2010 I was interviewed by CNN’s Casey Wian for a report that was titled,

“Tracking Down Visa Violators.”

On May 10, 2010 I was interviewed by Daniel Gonzalez, a reporter with the Arizona Republic for an news report titled,

“U.S. not cracking down on immigrants with expired visas.”

There are not new concerns nor are the facts as reported in the ABC News report made public yesterday the first time that reports have been issued by news agencies or governmental oversight organizations such as the GAO (General Accountability Office) and OIG (Office of the Inspector General).

On July 27, 2006 I testified before the House Subcommittee on Immigration, Border Security and Claims on the topic:

WHETHER THE ATTEMPTED IMPLEMENTATION OF THE REID-KENNEDY IMMIGRATION BILL WILL RESULT IN AN ADMINISTRATIVE AND NATIONAL SECURITY NIGHTMARE

brief video of a segment of my testimony before that hearing provides crystal clarity about my grave concerns about the nexus between any such amnesty program and national security.

What I said back then is just as relevant today.

Here are a few links to some recent articles I have written that focus on the failures of the immigration system which have created national security vulnerabilities for the United States and hobble efforts to wage a successful “War on Terror” to protect America and Americans from the ongoing threat of terrorism:

The “Gang of Eight” and Immigration Reform: “Bordering on a National Security Nightmare”

Audit: Feds’ immigration check system fails 12 percent of the time

Problems still abound in student visa program

Fraud: The Immigration Vulnerability That Undermines the Immigration System and National Security

GAO REPORT ON GENERAL AVIATION SECURITY TSA’s Process for Ensuring Foreign Flight Students Do Not Pose a Security Risk Has Weaknesses

Naturalized security threats retain U.S. Citizenship

“Visa Waiver Program Endangers our Safety and Security”

Fingerprint records reveal 825,000 immigrants with multiple names, inconsistent birth dates

“Comprehensive Immigration Reform: Background Checks Require a Reality Check”

On April 13, 2013 ICE posted a news release: New York City lawyer sentenced to 5 years in prison for operating substantial immigration fraud scheme.

Here is a quote from that release:

Earl Seth David, 45, ran a scheme in which he and his co-conspirators applied for legal status for tens of thousands of illegal aliens based on phony claims that they had been sponsored for employment by U.S. employers.

David was indicted October 2011, and extradited to the United States from Canada in January 2012. He pleaded guilty in April 2012 to one count of conspiracy to commit immigration fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud.

It is mind-boggling that after all of the potential counts to his indictment, David was permitted to plead guilty to just one count each of immigration fraud and mail fraud when it is believed that he committed thousands of separate crimes.

This next quote is no less mind-boggling:

David continued to operate the scheme even after he was suspended from the practice of law in New York State in March 2004.

He fled to Canada in 2006 after learning that his firm was under federal criminal investigation. However, illicit profits from the scheme continued to be funneled to him in Canada…”

How in the world did USCIS continue to accept and process applications from the offices of an attorney whose license had been suspended and who was operating outside the United States?

Additionally, there was no mention of any efforts to identify, locate or arrest any of the estimated more than 25,000 aliens who successfully gamed the immigration system. The 12 individuals who have been thus far named did not include any of the tens of thousands of aliens who benefited from their crimes and are, it must be presumed, un-indicted co-conspirators.

In the days, weeks and months after the terror attacks of September 11, 2001 a parade of self-righteous indignant politicians stood before a sea of cameras and pounded the podium and demanded to know why “No one connected the dots.”

The dots have been connected again and again ad nauseum. Yet these same politicians are now demanding that a law be enacted that violates the findings and recommendations of the 9/11 Commission even as new “horror stories” emerge with regularity showing how terrorists are clearly able to easily enter the United States and embed themselves by availing themselves of immigration benefits to which they were not entitled but received because of the utter lack of integrity to the adjudications process at USCIS. Comprehensive Immigration Reform would only make matters worse- far worse. Yet the push continues for passage for Comprehensive Immigration Reform.

I articulated my concerns about the previous attempt to enact Comprehensive Immigration Refom in my Op-Ed that the Washington Times published on June 22, 2007 and that Senator Jeff Sessions of Alabama quoted from, on three separate dates, from the floor of the U.S. during the contentious floor debates. In my piece I recommended that Comprehensive Immigration Reform be given a more honest and descriptive title, I suggested that it be renamed the “Terrorist Assistance and Facilitation Act!”  

My article was entitled:

Immigration bill a ‘No Go’

What I said back then certainly applies today, and then some!



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