Noting that the state faces a “full spectrum” of threats, especially “due to the recent actions of lone offenders or small groups affiliated with or inspired by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and other foreign terrorist organizations, we assess that the current terrorism threat to Texas is elevated,” the report states.
“We are especially concerned about the potential for terrorist infiltration across the U.S.-Mexico border, particularly as foreign terrorist fighters depart Syria and Iraq and enter global migration flows.”
And it’s not just those who sneak in that are of concern.
“We are concerned about the challenges associated with the security vetting of Syrian war refugees or asylum seekers who are resettled in Texas – namely, that derogatory security information about individuals is inaccessible or nonexistent. We see a potential that these challenges may leave the state exposed to extremist actors who pose as authentic refugees, and who are determined to later commit violent acts,” the state explains.
A report at the Investigative Project on Terrorism noted an extra level for concern because “at least 13 aspiring terrorists have tried to cross into Mexico, or considered trying, since 2012.” These are people who have been radicalized and want to travel overseas to join terrorist organizations but cannot travel by air because they are on the no-fly list.
The most recent case was in October when authorities arrested two Milwaukee men near San Angelo, Texas, Jason Ludke, 35, and Yosvany Padilla-Conde, 30. The two allegedly wanted to travel through Mexico to join ISIS.
President Trump has cited the potential threat of ISIS terrorists entering the U.S. from Mexico in his call for building a security wall.
Gangs and drug cartels both also play a role in the region’s violence, the state said, adding, “However, we note that human smugglers, working along established Latin American routes, have long transported Syrians, Iraqis, and other immigrants from countries where terrorist groups operate to our land border with Mexico, where they often seek asylum, too.
“As well, migrants from countries with a known terrorism presence – known as ‘special interest aliens’ – have included travelers from Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Lebanon, Egypt and many other ‘countries of interest’ in the Middle East, North Africa, and South Asia where terrorist groups are active,” the state says.
“We assess that the current terrorism threat to Texas is elevated in light of the relative frequency of recent attacks and thwarted plots in Europe and in the U.S., organized, supported, or inspired by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and other foreign terrorist organizations.
At issue is that ISIS and other terrorist groups from afar have succeeded in using various methods, including online propaganda and incitement messaging through social media, to inspire lone offenders and small groups to attack targets in the United States and in Europe. These inspired offenders, sometimes using the simple yet effective tactics laid out for them, are highly difficult to detect and disrupt.
The incitement capability for such attacks was indicated, for instance, when two Arizona extremists, already considering various targets, noticed social media reporting about a ‘Draw the Prophet Mohammed’ contest in Garland, Texas. In May 2015, two extremists drove to the Garland event and launched an attack at the contest location – as extremists abroad had been vigorously urging American ISIS loyalists to do.
A few months later, in San Bernardino, California, two local attackers killed 14 people after reportedly pledging allegiance to ISIS.
In June 2016, a lone offender in Florida, also likely inspired in part by the group, killed 49 people and wounded 53 others inside an Orlando nightclub.”
Nor is the danger small. “To assess the threat most accurately, we also consider the number of attacks that were attempted but thwarted, rather than merely the relative few that succeeded or the number of their victims. In the past two years, federal authorities have arrested more than 90 ISIS supporters inside the United States, and have broken up dozens of plots among them to commit violent acts inside the country.”
WND reported earlier government watchdog Judicial Watch claimed jihadists were partnering with Mexican drug cartels along the U.S.-Mexican border to prepare for attacks on America. Judicial Watch cited confidential U.S. and Mexican law enforcement sources.
As part of the plan, Islamic jihadists arrived recently at the Monterrey International Airport situated in Apodaca, a city in the Mexican state of Nuevo León, about 130 miles south of the Texas border, JW reported. “An internal Mexican law enforcement report obtained by Judicial Watch confirms that Islamic terrorists have ‘people along the border, principally in Tijuana, Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León and Tamaulipas.'”
JW reported as early as April 2015 that ISIS had established a training camp a few miles from El Paso, Texas, in an area known as “Anapra” just west of Ciudad Juárez in the Mexican state of Chihuahua. According to the JW report, cartel informants told law enforcement that “they are only waiting for the order and the times to carry out a simultaneous attack in the different ports of entry or cities of the United States of America.”
Drug cartels have a working “agreement” with Islamic terrorists, according to a high-ranking Mexican police administrator, who told JW that men from the Middle East arrive regularly into the country to train jihadists.
John Guandolo, a former FBI counter-terrorism specialist who now heads up the private consulting business Understanding the Threat, said the U.S. is about to reap the bitter fruit it has been sowing under the last several administrations – the Clintons, Bushes and Obamas – all of whom invited the Muslim Brotherhood into the White House as an inside policy player. (This nation was set up to fall under islamic terrorism)
As a result, all references to Islam deemed offensive to Muslims has been scrubbed from FBI training manuals and Muslim Brotherhood front groups such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations have been providing advice on how to deal with terrorism. Now, terror cells are here and ready to strike, as documented by Judicial Watch.
“This is a symptom of the much bigger ongoing problem – the catastrophic failure of U.S. officials to identify the threat and deal with it,” Guandolo told WND.
Trump has promised not only to build a wall at the U.S.-Mexico border, he has presented a range of policy proposals to stop the influx of illegal immigrants entering America.