Central Americans Helping Middle Easterners Sneak into U.S. with Fake ‘Migrant Caravans’

A report by the Federalist claims that people in countries in Central America are helping possible Middle Easter terrorists sneak into the U.S. by hiding them in these fake “migrant caravans” invading our borders.

According to the January 2 story, Federalist writer Todd Bensman went in person to Costa Rica and Panama to investigate rumors that Middle Easterners were hiding among the so-called “migrant caravaners” and trying to sneak into the U.S.A. with those groups.

Bensman said he spent two weeks in on-the-ground research into the question and did find the rumors to be true.

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One case Bensman reports on was the arrest of Ibrahim Qoordheen a Somali who is a suspected al Shabaab terrorist operative:

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Qoordheen had been smuggled from Zambia to Brazil, passed through Panama, and was making his way north through Costa Rica when the Americans had him arrested here, 20 miles inside Costa Rica, according to an American intelligence official with knowledge of the case who spoke on condition of anonymity. The Golfito camp, with a capacity of 250, was set up as a two-day rest station for South America-exiting migrants whom the governments of Panama and Costa Rica register and help move through northward to Nicaragua.

Luckily, the Somali stayed long enough for an American intelligence analyst working with the name he had provided in Panama to unscramble it and match it to a pre-existing intelligence file that identified him as intertwined with an al Shabaab cell and smuggling network in Zambia, the U.S. intelligence official said.

But Qoordheen wasn’t the only one, Bensman said:

A Costa Rican immigration service official whose jurisdiction includes the Golfito camp disclosed that at least several other U.S.-bound suspected terrorists also were pulled from this camp since Qoordheen’s March 2017 arrest, likewise based on significant derogatory U.S. counterterrorism intelligence. The Costa Rican official declined to provide specifics of the intelligence beyond that it involved terrorism, offering only that: “Most are good, but some are bad.”

Bensman adds the alarming fact that these governments have actual investigative branches of their security services tasked with hunting out these terrorists and they are finding them by the dozens.

American, Panamanian, and Costa Rican law enforcement and intelligence officials are engaged in actual programs here to hunt, investigate, and deport real terrorist suspects who are, in fact, discovered among the thousands of migrants from the Middle East, Horn of Africa, and South Asia funneling through this section of Latin America—as President Trump said and as I saw and heard on the ground.

Bensman warned that American officials are remaining purposefully ignorant of these arrests and pretending the whole thing does not even exist.

He ends with this:

At issue is that American authorities don’t know who many of them are and can’t verify their stories. All of those I interviewed said they had no identification with them. At the main bus station in Panama, one day, I met two travelers who initially identified themselves to me as Indonesian, a nation riven with violent Islamist groups, then rushed away from me when I identified myself as an American. Thousands like them are on the move through here, heading for the southern border every year, where they will show up as complete strangers.

Bensman has many more examples at his article. Go read it if you want to be informed of the danger our government is ignoring.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.

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