Terrorism is the main focus of John Morton's Immigration and Customs Enforcement. It is so the main focus that ICE is ignoring illegal alien students so as to concentrate on terrorists. However another group of Muslim terrorists have snuck by Morton and his brain trust at ICE. (h/t VDare)
SAN DIEGO -- 10News learned Camp Pendleton base officials have essentially closed the case involving three Middle Eastern men who tried to drive onto the base without proper authorization last weekend.Retired Colonel G.I. Wilson told 10News, "It does make you very, very suspicious, and the fact they came back a second time would really put my antenna up."The three men -- 40-year-old Afghani Ahmad Rahmani Naeem, 41-year-old Iranian Vahik Petrossian and 27-year-old Iranian Sengekdi Norvik Avanosian -- attempted to get into Camp Pendleton last weekend under what was considered suspicious circumstances.According to a Be On the Lookout (BOLO) alert issued to high-ranking Camp Pendleton officials, someone reported hearing hateful comments and terrorist threats from three men at a gas station in Oceanside Saturday.Investigators at Camp Pendleton said the men asked the attendant for directions on how to get to Camp Pendleton before they left the gas station.According to the alert, shortly after midnight Sunday, a rented silver Toyota Corolla driven by Naeem attempted to enter Camp Pendleton through the main gate. As it was being searched, Petrossian and Avanosian drove up in a black Mercedes, but were told to wait. Instead, they continued past the gate and onto the base. Following a short pursuit, the Mercedes was stopped and searched.No weapons or contraband were found in the Mercedes, but base security noticed the air bag in the steering wheel of the Mercedes had been pulled out and re-attached with duct tape and had wires hanging free, the alert said.According to the alert, Naaem told base security he was lost and was trying to go to Glendale. When interviewed, Petrossian and Avanosian said they were lost and trying to go to Glendale. The three men claimed not to know each other, the alert said.Naaem, Petrossian and Avanosian were photographed and released after questioning, and a warning about the trio was posted to law enforcement.However, later that morning about 8:30 a.m., Naeem returned in the Toyota and tried to get on the base again, saying he made a mistake and was trying to enter Interstate 5, the alert said. After his vehicle was searched, Naeem was issued a letter of debarment from the base and escorted to the freeway.Wilson was impressed by the guards' actions in dealing with the three men."[I] find a lot of reassurance in the fact that people at the gate, the Marines at the front gate, caught this and they were alert and on the job," said Wilson.Wilson said it's likely federal investigators are involved now, despite the statement from Camp Pendleton that it's been determined there is no threat."When you have these types of events, you have to investigate thoroughly. A simple background check is not enough. You have to send investigators out, knock on doors, find out if there's any relationship between the two people, and when you see something suspicious like wires coming out of a steering wheel, that also sets off alarm bells," Wilson said.Though no weapons were found, Wilson said the car could locate targets just beyond the gate."There is a large housing area that's readily observable and evident. There are also commercial activities. Camp Pendleton is a small city … it has all the vulnerabilities in all the areas where people concentrate," said Wilson.He also suggested it could have been a test of security, which the guards and base police passed with flying colors."This could have been serious, but it could have been a bad case of stupidity. We don't know. All we can do is follow up and do a thorough investigation," said WilsonWilson gave credit to the base commander and his staff for doing a great job of layering security, utilizing technology and basic human skills.He also said if this were a threat, the people on base deserve to know.On Thursday, Camp Pendleton base officials issued a statement, saying in part: "After further investigation, it was determined that the individuals involved were not a threat to MCB Camp Pendleton or any other military installation in the area. MCB Camp Pendleton officials are not investigating these incidents further."
It is clear that Afghan Ahmad Rahmani Naeem, Iranian Vahik Petrossian and Iranian Sengekdi Norvik Avanosian were executing a test of security at Camp Pendleton. Immigrants are a clannish lot, Chinese hang with other Chinese, Vietnamese with Vietnamese, Philippinos with Philippinos, etc. To see an Afghan with Iranians means only one thing, a group of Shi'ite radicals have established a cell under the direction of either Iran or Al Queda. Yes, Al Queda uses, trains, and cooperates with Shi'ite terrorists, just as they cooperate in current efforts to overthrow the Bahraini and Saudi monarchies. And using a rental car to boot. Sort of like the rental truck at the first WTC attack.
While the press seems to think that a federal investigation is likely, it is not. Undoubtedly they will scream profiling. That will certainly keep ICE at bay. Perhaps the FBI will do something, but not much will come of it.
Why, because more than likely this trio has already obtained naturalization. It should be known that little or nothing is done to determine if an immigrant is a terrorist threat. The only investigation of a potential immigrant or naturalization candidate is a fingerprint check and a name check. Unless there is a criminal conviction or publicly releasable information directly connecting the alien to terrorism, the alien is either admitted as an immigrant or naturalized.
Furthermore, it is quite easy for both Afghan and Iranian nationals who are deportable for criminal convictions to remain in the U.S. by just claiming asylee status. Either nationality can remain indefinitely, claiming that their country of citizenship will persecute them. And neither ICE, nor U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services will do anything about it; first because they don't really care about the issue and second because Hearing Officers from the Executive Office for Immigration Review are notoriously lax and credulous when confronted with even obvious fraud and lies from aliens. All the Iranian subjects have to do is claim that the government will arrest or torture them and they will remain. The Afghani can claim the same and also further claim that the Afghan government is incompetent and can't protect him from the Taliban or warlords. This despite the knowledge that we all have is that they are agents of either Al Queda or the Iranian government, or even self-motivated jihadists.
But the important fact is that ICE is unconcerned and will not investigate, nor make any effort to deport these aliens if they are already legal permanent residents or naturalized. No effort will be made to denaturalize them. It is just too much work for ICE and obviously no effort will be made at the EOIR to see that Hearing Officers actually do their jobs either. They have no effective supervision.
Even more interesting is that the terrorists were able to successfully penetrate the base with no effort made to stop them. The only effort was a pursuit by contract security guards, who are armed only with pistols. Heavily armed military police don't guard Marine Corps bases any more. Contract guards are cheaper. Remember Fort Hood, Major Hassan was shot by a contract security guard armed with a pistol. Had Hassan been serious, he would have had a rifle, much like the North Hollywood Shootout bank robbers, who, as Brenda Walker pointed out have a curious combination of what she calls arrogance, but I call daring, and incompetence. Interestingly enough one of the NHS shooters was an immigrant.
Had this been an actual attack, the terrorists would have been better armed than the guards and they would not have submitted to a common traffic stop. They would have continued onward, most likely firing randomly with rifles at targets of opportunity, as the Arkansas Muslim shooter did at the Army recruiting station and the Fort Dix terrorists planned to do. There was nothing that could have stopped them. Planning on their incompetence is not a plan, it is stupidity.
But don't look to ICE to track down fellow members of this cabal, or to track down your average alien suffering from Sudden Jihad Syndrome, or those with a long-term plan. ICE is neither looking for illegal alien students, nor Muslim terrorists. It just doesn't want to find them. Why, because, in both cases, there will be fewer illegal aliens around for the next amnesty, nor does ICE want to profile. Because, you see, terrorists can be anybody. There is nothing in common that an ICE agent is allowed by John Morton to see among these three amigos.
And the question to ask John Morton is how did the three amigos get by ICE's vaunted enforcement strategy and intelligence apparatus? There is not much of a result from the thousands of ICE agents allegedly pursuing the priority of terrorism. They missed these three. Perhaps Morton should resign because of this failure.
I can say one word in Morton's defense, these terrorists have been here for a long time and are most likely naturalized U.S. citizens. ICE's failure today is preceded by a long history of failure. These won't have been the first terrorists ignored by either ICE or the legacy INS, and won't be the last.