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The lie that will not stand

Posted By Tom Tancredo On 02/05/2011 @ 12:00 am In Commentary | Comments Disabled

A group of border-city mayors from Brownsville to San Diego have joined to issue a statement supporting the claim that our southwest border is secure. They say that since there is no crime wave in their cities, the violence in Mexico is not spilling over the border and Homeland Security Secretary Napolitano is doing a great job.

The ranchers and farmers of Cochise County, Ariz., are not impressed. Neither is the Arizona Cattle Growers Association or the city officials in Green Valley or dozens of other Arizona communities. The drug trafficking and human smuggling across the open borders continues at very high levels.

And yet, Napolitano persists in repeating the lie that “our borders are as secure as they have ever been.” Why is the Obama administration so deeply committed to what every ordinary citizen of Arizona knows to be a lie?

The answer is that Napolitano’s mission is not to help secure the border; her job is to lay the groundwork for the next amnesty bill. For any amnesty bill to have any chance of bipartisan support in Congress, the Obama team must find a handful of Republicans to agree to the claim that the border is now “secure enough” to proceed with another amnesty. So, the debate in Congress always comes down to the question, how much border security can we “reasonably expect” as a precondition for another amnesty?

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To help this process along, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has been busy redefining border security. Citizens need to pay attention to this bureaucratic game and insist their congressional representatives peel away the layers of deception involved.

The Secure Fence Act of 2006 mandated 700 miles of new, double-layer fencing on the southwest border. For the first time in history, in the legislation, Congress told DHS that its mission was to stop “all unlawful entry into the United States.” Moreover, although the funds for those 700 miles of new fencing were removed the following year, that statement of the DHS mission was never changed. Yet, amazingly, DHS has never incorporated that goal into its own planning and operational plans.

But this intransigence did not start with Obama or Napolitano. The ugly truth is that our Border Patrol has never been challenged by its political and policy leadership to develop a plan to halt all unlawful entry into our country. That’s right: stopping all illegal entry is not the mission of the Border Patrol – and never has been.

If that’s not the Border Patrol mission, what is? That mission is to “manage” the border “effectively,” which means to detect unlawful entry, to monitor it, count it and then report apprehensions. But to DHS and CBP bureaucrats, “effective management of the border” does not mean to stop it.

This lack of clear mission is not the fault of the dedicated men and women who patrol our borders. They work under the rules and with the limited resources provided by the Congress and senior agency managers. The truth is, the Border Patrol has never been given the tools or resources or the mandate to secure the border against all unlawful entry.

The good news is that the American people are way ahead of the bureaucrats. They do understand that not only are our borders not secure, not only is Janet Napolitano lying about border security, but the Obama administration has no plan to do anything about it.

The strange disconnect here is that the defenders of open borders seem to think that if they keep telling that lie over and over, people will eventually believe it. The problem is that unlike other lies, it is contradicted by evidence available to anyone with open eyes.

Napolitano would like us to believe a non sequitur: Since fewer than 500,000 illegal aliens were apprehended crossing the border in 2010 instead of the 1.1 million caught in 2005, we now have an acceptable level of border security. That may be acceptable to Obama and DHS bureaucrats, but it is not acceptable to most Americans – especially people living in one of the 24 mainly rural counties on the southwest border. Nor is it acceptable that several thousand persons from nations that harbor terrorists – nations like Yemen, Pakistan, Iran and Lebanon – are caught on our borders each year. If the “got away ratio” traditionally used by the Border Patrol is still valid, a ratio that says three to five border jumpers escape apprehension for every one caught, then there are 10,000 or more of those “special interest aliens” entering our country each year.

As the old saying goes, there are lies and then there are damned lies. Napolitano is the chief cheerleader for a third type: damned stupid lies.


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