Is America's Director of Homeland Security a terrorist? Tom Ridge has terrorized Americans on three occasions since the 9-11 attacks by warning that terrorists would strike very soon. He was never sure of who, what, where, or exactly when the attack could occur, but warned Americans to worry. While the Bush administration enjoys the easy victory in Afghanistan, its effort to improve Homeland Security is a failure. The main focus has been to nullify the remainder of the Bill of Rights, even though no US citizen was involved in the WTC attacks, and none of the new laws would have prevented the 9-11 attacks. While the foreign hijackers entered the USA legally, they overstayed their visas for years and no one looked for them. This happened because there are over 8 million illegal aliens in the USA whose background is unknown, and that number is growing rapidly because loopholes and bureaucratic snafus prevent enforcement of American laws. Mr. Ridge can quickly improve Homeland Security by asking Congress to approve these three changes.
#1 Establish 24/7 federal courts to instantly hear deportation cases.
Most American cities have continuous courts in session, like "night court", to quickly resolve minor legal issues without keeping people in jail for days. However, the entire US Court system runs on a formal "calendar" with regular hours and holidays. Because of the flood of immigration cases, the calendar has backlogged in many districts. Since it is impossible to detain most illegal immigrants who are arrested for several weeks until their hearing, hundreds of thousands are set free each year. This has become so well-known that one-third of those arrested for violating immigration laws demand a deportation hearing, even those caught "red-handed" crossing the border or presenting false passports or visas at airport arrival stations. As a result, 85% of those arrested who demand a hearing are freed in the USA after promising to appear a few weeks later; 90% of them never show. The recent "shoe bomb" terrorist was traveling with a forged passport. If he had preferred to enter the USA for terrorist activities, he may have been released into the USA despite his fake passport with a promise to appear at his deportation hearing.
Tom Ridge should tackle this problem immediately by requesting the establishment of ten federal immigration courts in areas with high case loads. Ideally, some of these courts would be inside major airports, like: JFK, LAX, and Miami. He would request the appointment of 100 new magistrates and introduce the esteemed judges to military and police life of working nights, weekends and holidays so detainees who demand a hearing see a federal magistrate within hours of arrest. Aliens attempting to play the court game will be sent back across the border or put on a flight home within 24 hours. In other cases, the judge may determine that a mistake may have been made and order the suspect released, detained, or released on bond. Ironically, this will eventually save money each year because of lower prisoner detention and transport costs. Eventually, the illegal immigration game players will learn that the "demand a hearing" loophole has closed and the problem will subside. This will free Border Patrol agents to spend more time making "new" arrests and allow immigration officers to pursue those who overstay visas.
#2 Aliens arrested in the USA are not eligible for political asylum.
The "political asylum" game is well known in the Third World. A billion people on Earth are repressed and can present an excuse for asylum. They are welcome to apply at any US embassy or consulate overseas, or while they are legally visiting the USA. However, they should not be allowed that option after arrest for violating US law by entering illegally or overstaying their visa. Each year, thousands of people who are caught at US airports with a forged passports or visas demand "political asylum", and then are allowed to enter the USA anyway pending a hearing. Thousands more who are arrested for overstaying their visas or lacking any legal documents scream "political asylum" for prompt release. Over 90% never show up for their hearing.
#3 Pressure countries to accept deportees, or find ways to dump them off.
A few years ago, the federal government responded to citizen complaints about prisons releasing illegal aliens who finish their criminal sentence into their neighborhoods. US Immigration began to pick up criminal aliens for deportation when they finished their prison term. However, countries like Cuba and Vietnam refuse to accept deportees because they don't want homeless criminals either. As a result, some aliens who finished their sentence for a crime remained incarcerated for years afterwards in legal limbo. Last year, the Supreme Court ruled that they cannot be jailed for life and must be released until deportation can be arranged. These criminal aliens are now put on permanent federal probation and set free in the USA.
The President and the State Department must recognize this as a serious problem. Countries which refuse to accept their own citizens should not receive aid or trade agreements. Aggressive steps should also be considered, like using Navy ships to drop them off shore of their home countries in life rafts with paddles. In the case of Cuba, just fly them to our naval base there and shove them out the gate. This may seem comical, but would you prefer that a foreign rapist, car thief, or mugger be released in your town? It happens everyday.
The flood of illegal immigrants is America's greatest national security problem. California is so overwhelmed that it abandoned an attempt to deny driver's licenses to people who cannot provide a valid social security number. The US Congress made laws that must be enforced, and citizens who think greater legal immigration is needed are free to argue for changes. However, no sane American wants our cities to become a worldwide dumping ground for billions of impoverished refugees. No American wants foreign criminal fugitives slipping into the USA to begin a second career. No American thinks executives at Tyson foods should conspire to smuggle illegal immigrants from Mexico to work in their chicken processing plants because they don't want offer American workers a decent wage.
The chaos along the US borders and in major cities is a grave threat to national security. Every week, thousands of people with criminal backgrounds, diseases, illegal drugs, and violent political beliefs enter the USA unchecked. Even if caught and arrested, many demand a deportation hearing or political asylum for prompt release. The al Qaeda terrorists entered the US legally, but stayed for years illegally because immigration officers were too busy caring for detainees and sending millions of illegal immigrants through revolving court doors. Tom Ridge is not a terrorist, but he needs to stop terrorizing Americans and push these changes through Congress to slow the uncontrolled invasion of the USA.
Carlton Meyer editorG2mil@Gmail.com
G2mil editorials may be freely distributed without permission
January 2002 Articles
have been returned to the Members Library
Letters - comments from G2mil readers
The Calamity of Urban Warfare - the US military needs a major urban training site
Infra-red Communications - talk during radio silence
Airborne Rocket Artillery - theater-wide artillery support
LAV-III Armored Car - a step backwards
Seven Lies About Iraq - in search of enemies
Previous G2mil - December 2001 issue
Transforming the US Army - the first in a series
Library Tour - visit G2mil's library (Year 2001 G2 Gems now open to visitors)
Library Entrance - members only
All material in G2mil Copyright 2002 G2mil, patents pending on some items. Links to the index page (www.G2mil.com) are encouraged, other page names change often.