Now Available for Pre-Order, February 2, 2021 release date

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The forthcoming book by journalist-turned-intelligence analyst Todd Bensman, AMERICA’S COVERT BORDER WAR, is now available for pre-order on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. This 13-year work of journalism reveals, for the first time, secret (ongoing) border security operations that America built after 9/11 to prevent terrorist infiltration mainly over the southern border with Mexico. …


The Inter-American Dialogue’s daily Latin America Advisor recently asked a range of immigration experts, including me, to comment on Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei’s government request that the United States grant Temporary Protected Status, or TPS, to hundreds of thousands of Guatemalan migrants currently subject to deportation. The argument is that Hurricanes Eta and Iota have wrought too much destruction in Guatemala into which deportees would be sent. My answer follows:

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By Todd Bensman as published December 1, 2020 by the Inter-American Dialogue’s daily Latin America Advisor

TPS is one of the most unnecessary American immigration policies on the books.

It has allowed some 400,000 foreign nationals subject to deportation to stay, ostensibly for a finite time, after their homelands suffered natural catastrophes or warfare. But almost none ever actually return. …


By Todd Bensman as originally November 30, 2020 by the Center for Immigration Studies

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The man tapped to become U.S. Department of Homeland Security secretary, Cuba-born Alejandro “Ali” Mayorkas, would wear many hats running one of the country’s largest bureaucracies. With some 240,000 employees, the DHS conglomeration created after 9/11 melds counterterrorism intelligence, emergency management, cybersecurity, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the U.S. Secret Service. But the planned nomination also portends far-reaching impacts on all forms of legal and illegal immigration.

Already, the 61-year-old Mayorkas has shown early interest in an oversight role over U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CPB), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the agency he once headed, U.S. …


Has the Time Come to Acknowledge it and Consider Remedies?

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Bodies of Covid patients in El Paso

By Todd Bensman as provided November 24, 2020 to Homeland Security Today

AUSTIN, Texas — In late October, the El Paso television station KFOX-14 aired video of fire department ambulances lining up at the international bridge picking up Covid-19 patients who had just crossed from Mexico and driving them to hospitals, the ones now filled to crisis proportions.

Along with the video footage, the local TV station quoted one of the fire department’s paramedics describing an assembly-line operation where the whole ambulance fleet at times was pressed into transporting Mexicans from the international ports of entry to El Paso hospitals. …


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By Todd Bensman as originally published November 23, 2020 by the Investigative Project on Terrorism

Presumed President-Elect Joe Biden vowed during the campaign that on “day one” he would rescind President Donald Trump’s “vile” and “Islamophobic” restrictions on U.S. entry from 13 countries, the policy often referred to as the “Muslim Travel Ban.”

But repealing the president’s Executive Order, which applies to countries with terrorism and espionage concerns, portends a return to a very recent era when U.S. security and immigration agencies often were unable to vet travelers from those particular nations.

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Trump’s executive order eliminated the problem of vetting the histories, backgrounds, hearts and minds of immigrant visa applicants from ungoverned nations like Yemen, Chad, Sudan, Eritrea and Somalia, where record-keeping systems that can track terrorists (let alone marriages and births), are severely dysfunctional, or don’t exist. Other countries were listed because their governments are hostile and uncooperative on terrorism or espionage vetting matters, like Syria, Myanmar, North Korea and Venezuela. These nations would never help U.S. security establishment filter out terrorists and spies. …


The U.S. Department of Defense should deploy an emergency medical airlift and land convoys to northern Mexico now

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By Todd Bensman as originally published November 17 by the Center for Immigration Studies

AUSTIN, Texas — Two irrefutable facts militate for an immediate re-do of President Donald Trump’s original Coronavirus-containment closure order for the U.S.-Mexico border:

- Mexicans sick with the virus have overrun hospitals in their own cities along the border, such as in Ciudad Juarez, to the point that they are unable to care for the patients they have, let alone new ones, or those who have died.

- Left with no possibility of care in Mexican border states, Covid-sick patients with green cards, dual citizenship, or border crossing passes are legally exploiting loop holes that riddle President Trump’s March 2020 emergency border closure to reach US hospitals in El Paso and elsewhere. …


Many rejected the narrative that a racist president hated them

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By Todd Bensman as published November 11, 2020 by the Center for Immigration Studies

AUSTIN, Texas — One of the 2020 election’s great surprises — the color change from Democrat blue to Trump red of Latino districts along the Texas-Mexico border — has already given way to early conclusions that Republican economic policy pushed this reliably Democratic constituency rightward.

Interviews with residents on the Texas border and an analysis of hyper-local border media reports certainly confirm that voters in historically blue counties like Starr, Zapata, Cameron, Webb, Val Verde, La Salle and Frio and many others that either went red for the first time in living memory, or came close, did feel repelled by Joe Biden’s talk of transitioning away from oil and gas fracking and wish for pandemic-related business lockdowns. …


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By Todd Bensman as originally published November 9, 2020 by the Investigative Project on Terrorism

For the first time in a quarter century, forward motion has been detected in the moribund investigation into one of the world’s most enduring, unsolved terrorist bombings: the 1994 downing of Panamanian airliner Alas Chiricanas Flight 901.

The mid-air, apparent suicide bombing killed all 22 people aboard the short commuter flight from Colon to Panama City, 12 of them leading local Jewish businessmen. Coming just one day after the more catastrophic attack on the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association (AIMA) that left 85 Jews dead, Chiricanas Flight 901 drew less media interest or a similarly muscular investigative effort that eventually led Argentina to indict Iranian leaders and Iran’s proxy, the U.S.-designated foreign terrorist organization Hizballah. …


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By Todd Bensman as published by the Center for Immigration Studies on October 30, 2020

The latest Islamic terror attack in Europe — where a knife- and Quran-wielding jihadist fatally slashed three people in a church in Nice, France (nearly decapitating one of them) — can now be added to the world’s newest but still largely unread book on terrorist travel tactics: He illegally infiltrated Europe’s borders posing as a migrant-refugee to reach his French target, according to French officials.

In entering Europe using this highly effective clandestine infiltration method, 21-year-old Brahim Aouissaoui joins scores of attacking, plotting Islamic terrorists who have crossed Europe’s borders as illegal aliens since 2014, hiding among numerically greater migrants and refugees — and still come even though Europe’s so-called migrant crisis supposedly ended in 2017. …


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By Todd Bensman as originally published October 27 by the Center for Immigration Studies

AUSTIN, Texas — In El Paso County across from Juarez, Mexico, hospitals once again are buckling under the weight of a new Covid-19 case influx of 300 percent in just the past three weeks, drawing intense media coverage in recent days. Hospitals in California’s border-hugging Imperial Valley hospitals are jammed with patients too, transporting “hundreds” of them to interior hospitals to keep their beds clear for more. And, in the Arizona-Mexico border counties of Yuma and Santa Cruz, hospitals also are suffering Covid case surges.

Unfortunately or fortunately, this all looks like a re-run of what happened this past spring and summer, not only in El Paso, where the crisis is national news, but also in Arizona and California. …

About

Todd Bensman

Todd Bensman is Senior National Security Fellow for the Center for Immigration Studies, a 9-year counterterrorism intelligence manager, and 23-year journalist

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