Basically he says we don’t know who these refugees are “moving up into Europe or elsewhere in the Middle East.” No kidding!
Partway into this Politico piece on Obama’s State of the Union speech and Afghanistan comes this telling section of the article:
The danger from Syria, for example, seems likely to linger for a long time. And it’s exactly the kind of danger that, in the wake of Sept. 11, was deemed by Republicans and Democrats to be unacceptable.
“As long as that conflict is going on, as long as people are learning how to kill other people and meeting really bad people, it’s going to be a big worry,” FBI Director James Comey told reporters recently.
“The conflict in Syria has attracted so many people from so many places, of so many motivations, including Americans, that it is an enormous challenge for all intelligence services, including the FBI, to identify the ones of bad intent,” he said. “To figure out where they’re going, why they’re going and to keep track of them. It’s something we’re spending a lot of time on.”
The new FBI director told reporters at his office that the FBI has a relatively good handle on Americans who’ve traveled back and forth to Syria, or made the attempt, but knows much less about the many others involved with or displaced by the conflict, including refugees moving up into Europe or elsewhere in the Middle East.
People inside the counterterrorism world have compared it to Afghanistan in the 1980s, Comey said, “but in some ways it’s more worrisome.” Syria is easier to reach, more people are involved, and the population is much more diverse, he said.
Yesterday, UK Minister of Foreign Affairs Hague signaled that the United Kingdom would be looking to possibly resettle “vulnerable” Syrian refugees. Whether the general public, which largely does not support more immigration (Syrians this time), will be persuaded I suppose rests on the definition of “vulnerable” and for how long they will be allowed to stay. Will this be permanent resettlement?
William Hague, the minister for foreign affairs, has confirmed the government is working on a plan to accept “particularly vulnerable” refugees from Syria.
The government had been resisting the idea of accepting refugees for months, but the senior Conservative party MP said the government was now actively considering which Syrian people should be allowed to come to Britain. It comes after Prime Minister, David Cameron, signalled a partial retreat over the issue under pressure from a cross-party group of politicians, saying he was now “open-minded” about accepting the injured, particularly children.
Speaking on BBC TV’s Andrew Marr (politics) Show, Hague revealed that plans were under way to bring over some refugees, but stressed the main priority would be providing aid to the region.
“The home secretary (minister for domestic affairs) is working on that, and will have more to say about that in the coming days,” he said. “I think there is a case for particularly helping people who are particularly vulnerable. I think we have to look at it in that way.”
Frankly, I think it’s the Muslims the average British citizen sees as NOT “particularly vulnerable.”
This is a comment we don’t want you to miss from ‘pungentpeppers’ in response to the previous post on the South Carolina cigarette trafficking story.
“Immigrants open businesses and revitalize communities,” politicians say. Nasser Alquza boasted that he owned 30 businesses! He and his nephew Kamel Qazah (same family name, just spelled differently) ran a pizza parlor, a Subway franchise, a car lot, two gas stations, etc. Ideal, upstanding immigrants – or thieving, economic terrorists?
The nephew Qazah bragged to undercover agents that he could “sell anything.” That ranged from stolen electronics to Christmas decorations pilfered from a hijacked Wal-Mart truck. Uncle Alquza told investigators that he, too, sold a diversified portfolio of stolen merchandise – from baby formula to Advil to condoms. He also confided that he could launder hundreds of thousands of dollars overseas each month through various accounts. The secret to his success: Keep changing your operation, he told agents, and you’ll never get caught. And they weren’t alone – they ran their scheme in cooperation with a large network of family, friends and associates in the immigrant community.
Is that what America needs?! Immigrant “entrepreneurs” who steal merchandise, sell it, skip paying taxes, and ship the money overseas?!
Our legitimate business owners are burdened by taxes – but at least they have the satisfaction of knowing that the money they send to their to local governments pays for police protection, schools, road repair, local parks, trash collection, and to help fellow citizens who have hit on hard times. But our decent business owners just cannot compete against people who couldn’t give a hoot about the local community, and instead just milk whatever money they can get out of the American cash cow – ignoring all rules and obligations – and then launder their ill-gotten stolen money abroad to the Middle East.
Stop this harmful, “immigrant business” foreign aid program! Our towns and cities cannot afford it anymore!
Readers: I had forgotten we had this category “Comments worth noting.” I’ll keep an eye out for other good comments like this one and try to publish them more prominently going forward.
What does this have to do with refugees? Hopefully not much, but a note of warning to the Bhutanese refugees rumored to be trafficking cigarettes, you will likely be caught one day.
Convenience store fraud is not limited to food stamp fraud (a side interest here at RRW). In addition to SNAP trafficking there is gambling, illegal drug sales, cigarette smuggling and even gun sales going on behind those shoddy facades at the local mom and pop stores.
I sound like a broken record, but someone really needs to create an entire blog about immigrant criminals in America!
Here is one account from 2012 of the bust of the ring headed by Jordanian immigrant Nasser Alquza. From The Post and Courier (Hat tip: the ever-vigilant ‘pungentpeppers’):
A Mount Pleasant man fronted cash in a multimillion-dollar cigarette trafficking and money laundering scheme that crossed state borders and hid cash within South Carolina businesses, according to federal court documents unsealed last week.
Nasser Alquza, 56, was president of the Central Mosque of Charleston until after his arrest Nov. 30.
Investigators nabbed Alquza and 10 other men in a 26-count indictment filed in North Carolina, accusing them of crimes ranging from conspiracy to receiving stolen property.
Court records say the men bought nearly 7,000 cases of “stolen” cigarettes, each containing 60 cartons, from undercover officers in exchange for about $7.5 million.
Federal agents searched Alquza’s home, a three-story yellow house on Oakhurst Drive in the upscale Rivertowne community in Mount Pleasant, shortly after 7 a.m. on Nov. 30. They left with computers, cameras, money, check books, receipts, business records, passports and identification documents.
Officials asked a judge to seal the court records as the investigation continued, but the documents became public last week.
And in a recent update of the story, this time at the Lake Wylie Pilot, we learn of the convictions in the case where “business ties” extended to the perps’ native Jordan. Don’t you wonder which of our LEGAL immigration programs let Alquza and his crew into America?
Key figures in a $20 million cigarette-smuggling ring across the Carolinas, which involved the undercover sale of almost a half million cartons of smokes, received federal prison sentences of up to 18 years this week in Charlotte.
In all, “Operation Burn Notice” led to the arrests of 12 people on cigarette-trafficking and money-laundering charges – all connected to the flow of illegal merchandise between Charlotte, Greensboro and Columbia.
Undercover agents from the Charlotte-Mecklenburg police and other law enforcement groups eventually focused on the uncle-nephew team of Nasser Kamal Alquza of Mount Pleasant, S.C., and Kama Zaki Qazah of Columbia.
Together, the men owned businesses ranging from convenience stores to used-car lots to Subway franchises. They also maintained extensive business ties throughout South Carolina and their native Jordan.
Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Frank Whitney sentenced the 35-year-old Qazah to 18 years in prison followed by two years of supervised release.Whitney also ordered him to forfeit any property associated with his crimes. [Two years of supervised release? How about deportation!—ed]
That last hit could be substantial. When authorities searched Qazah’s house after his arrest, they came across a cardboard box in his garage. It held $1,299,990 in cash.
According to this report, uncle Nasser Alquza will be sentenced sometime this week.
Just like the stories of refugee criminals we have reported lately here in Utah, and here in Colorado, this story will not reach the national mainstream media, so it’s up to you, bloggers, on-line publishers and readers on the web, to get this news out!
For our complete archive on food stamp fraud, click here.