WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Since Sept. 11, 2001, Americans living along the U.S.-Mexican border have been warning that our porous frontier is a back door for terrorist entry into this country. Local, state and federal law enforcement officers, overwhelmed by the flow of human traffic across the border, have acknowledged the threat -- and been widely ignored by the mainstream media and "official" Washington. Last year, in little-noticed congressional testimony, FBI Director Robert Mueller revealed that "individuals from countries with known al Qaeda connections have attempted to enter the United States illegally using alien smuggling rings and assuming Hispanic appearances."
Now, thanks to the investigative reporting of my colleague at FOX News, correspondent William Lajeunesse, the monarchs of the media and the potentates on the Potomac can no longer ignore reality. Lajeunesse took the time to carefully digest a new staff report prepared by the House Committee on Homeland Security. It ought to be required reading for every reporter and official in Washington, D.C.
Titled "A Line in the Sand: Confronting the Threat at the Southwest Border," the just-released report confirms what many have long suspected: Our border is a sieve, not a barrier, for radical Islamic terrorists transiting into the United States. The Investigations Subcommittee charges that from Sept. 11, 2001, to the present, hundreds of illegal aliens from countries "such as Iran, Jordan, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Pakistan and Afghanistan" were apprehended crossing into the United States.
But that's not all the bad news. Investigators also found:
-- In June 2006, seven Iraqis were caught in Brownsville, Texas;
-- In August, an Afghani man was caught crossing the Rio Grande into Texas;
-- Mueller has testified that a Hezbollah cell had been "dismantled" after officials discovered that the terror organization was smuggling operatives across the U.S.-Mexico border to carry out terror attacks inside the United States.
-- Individuals from countries with known al Qaeda connections have changed their Islamic surnames and adopted false Hispanic identities in order to escape detection and blend into American society.
-- Radical Islamic groups that support Hamas, Hezbollah and Islamiya Al Gamat are all active in Latin America.
Oliver North is a nationally syndicated columnist, the host of War Stories on the Fox News Channel, the author of the new novel Heroes Proved and the co-founder of Freedom Alliance, an organization that provides college scholarships to the children of U.S. military personnel killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. Join Oliver North in Israel by going to www.olivernorthisrael.com.