Fighting terror: Refugee realism
Days before the terror attacks in Brussels, the House Judiciary Committee passed legislation that would tighten the screening of refugees in the United States and transfer to Congress the authority on setting quotas.
The committee’s 18-9 vote is a fitting rebuke to President Obama, who, despite public opposition, has remained steadfast in accepting 10,000 Syrian refugees this year.
The Refugee Program Integrity Restoration Act would set an annual cap on refugees, subject to change ultimately by Congress instead of by presidential prerogative. It also gives state and local governments authority to reject refugee resettlements, The Hill newspaper reports.
The case for tougher regulation is reinforced by this January’s arrest in the U.S. of two Iraqi refugees who allegedly attempted to collude with ISIS and then lied about their terrorist ties. Even the administration’s own security directors acknowledge that existing screening is far from foolproof.
Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson this month told House lawmakers that the tide of refugees from Iraq and Syria represents “a potential opportunity for terrorists organizations to move its members into other nations.”
As the attacks in Europe demonstrate, today’s agents of terror will use any means possible to inflict carnage. America cannot hold open the gates to refugees from the same nations that cultivate terrorists and, at the same time, expect tranquility.
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