Ominous warning: Ex-border chief says next terror attack may have already crossed porous U.S. border
Mark Morgan’s caution comes as Senate report says Biden policies have substantially benefited drug cartels.
A former Trump border security chief is warning that planning for the next terrorist attack on American soil may already be under way as Republican senators expose how transnational criminal organizations (TCOs) are benefitting from the Biden administration’s policies.
Former Acting Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Mark Morgan told the John Solomon Reports podcast on Wednesday that he’s concerned the next terrorist attack will come from a border crosser who evaded apprehension by law enforcement.
“[M]y worry is, is the next terrorist attack is already here being planned in the United States, and they got in through that 800,000 gotaways because this administration has opened our borders wide open and handed operational control of our borders to the cartels,” Morgan said.
Meanwhile, Republican senators led by ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Sen. Jim Risch (R-Idaho), released a report on Wednesday entitled, “Biden’s Border Crisis: Examining Policies that Encourage Illegal Migration,” which highlights how TCOs (which include cartels) profit off of human trafficking and provides a solution to stopping it.
According to the report, “TCOs benefit from and prolong the illegal migration crisis by facilitating and profiting off the smuggling and trafficking of migrants or victimizing vulnerable people along the dangerous journey to the United States.”
As a result, the safety and security of communities are threatened as “criminals have infiltrated the United States through these nefarious activities,” the report warns.
One solution offered by the senators is for the Biden administration to utilize “existing bilateral extradition treaties to prosecute transnational criminal actors facilitating illegal migration to the United States.”
Specifically, according to the report, “the United States should maximize existing Palermo protocols and bilateral extradition treaties with Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras to prosecute human smugglers and traffickers.
“These efforts will send a stark message across the vast criminal networks that they can no longer target vulnerable individuals and engage in these horrific activities without clear punishment and justice brought by the United States.”
Morgan said he believes that the U.S. needs to have “the same commitment and whole of government approach that we’ve used targeting terrorists, we need to use that same approach to target the criminal cartels, those transnational organizations.
”If we do it the same way, the same structure, the same commitment and same will and courage, we can have the same level impact, in my opinion, of the transnational cartels as we do with the terrorist organizations,” he said.
The report also criticized the Biden administration for the border crisis, saying, “A number of the Biden administration’s policies have incentivized illegal migration, eroded the security of our borders, and undermined U.S. efforts to build effective law enforcement and asylum processing mechanisms across Mexico and northern Central America.”
Sen. Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.), one of the Republicans releasing the report, said in a statement, “This report corroborates what my colleagues and I have asserted since President Biden rashly reversed successful Trump-era border policies when he stepped into office, almost-immediately collapsing our southern border: the border protection policies implemented under the previous Administration, including the Migrant Protection Protocols and Asylum Cooperative Agreements, facilitated a secure America, stability in the region at large, and the critical prevention of drug and human trafficking.
“For the sake of America and its people, I urge the Administration to take serious our recommendations and reverse course on their harmful immigration policies and do more to counter the lethal flow of China-origin fentanyl and precursors across the southern border.”
More than three million migrants are believed to have illegally crossed the border since Biden took office, according to the report.
“Since January 2021, U.S. law enforcement has encountered over 2.6 million migrants trying to enter the United States illegally from Mexico, northern Central America, and countries beyond,” the report reads.
The 2.6 million encounters are in addition to the approximately 800,000 “gotaways,” which are migrants who have evaded capture by law enforcement.
However, Morgan said that “if you ask most Border Patrol agents, they'll say that number is well over a million.”