-- A true state of "heightened alert" would mean a targeted visa moratorium for terror-sponsoring and terror-friendly nations. The Enhanced Border Security and Visa Entry Reform Act of 2002 placed such a ban on temporary visitor visas for individuals from the seven official state sponsors of terrorism. The list should be expanded and revisited if and when intelligence points to new al Qaeda breeding grounds. And yes, that means tourists from Egypt, Yemen, Syria and the Philippines might be denied a Grand Canyon vacation the next five years. Tough noogies.
At this point, despite all the grand rhetoric from both political parties about increased information-sharing and cooperation, I have limited confidence that our consular offices abroad are capable of stopping the next Mohammed Atta or Hani Hanjour from getting a temporary visa. The fewer applications from danger spots they have to deal with, the better.
-- A true state of "heightened alert" would mean killing off the idiotic Diversity Visa Lottery Program once and for all and scouring the H1-B visa program for Islamist exploitation.
-- A true state of "heightened alert" would mean unapologetic government monitoring of Arab and Muslim foreign students on temporary visas, Muslim chaplains and soldiers serving in the military and in prisons, and Arab and Muslim pilots and flight students.
-- A true state of "heightened alert" would mean immediate deportation of illegal aliens from terror-sponsoring and terror-supporting nations, increased National Guard dispatches on both the northern and southern borders, aggressive police-federal cooperation to catch illegal border crossers and overstayers on the interior, and vigorous encouragement of volunteer border security efforts like the Minuteman Project.
It's precisely these kinds of national security profiling and targeted immigration enforcement measures that obstructionists characterize as an "anti-Muslim backlash," which is why no one will talk about them despite all the "heightened alert" posturing.
In London, "terrorists" are "bombers." In the U.S., citizen watchdogs are "vigilantes."
The Ministry of Truth would be pleased.