"ILLEGAL ALIEN QUESTIONED IN CHANDRA LEVY CASE."
Did you miss that headline in the news last week? Well, that's
because no one ran it.
Ingmar Guandique, a violent Salvadoran national who is serving a
10-year sentence for assaulting two female joggers in Washington's Rock
Creek Park last year, was interrogated recently as part of the investigation
into the intern murder mystery. But in my review of all 115 news items
archived in the Lexis-Nexis database that mention Guandique in connection
with the Levy case, not a single story referred to his status as a criminal
The Associated Press described Guandique merely as an
"immigrant"; The New York Times called him a "Washington man." On the basic
questions of where Guandique came from, how he got here and how he managed
to stay, The Washington Post -- the mainstream media giant closest to the
scene of Guandique's crimes -- has printed nothing at all.
Though Guandique reportedly passed lie detector tests, he
remains an unofficial person of interest in the Levy case. D.C. police chief
Charles Ramsey says the media is making too big a deal of Guandique. Quite
the contrary. The glaring omission of Guandique's immigration status from
the mainstream media's no-stone-unturned Levy coverage is a newsworthy act
of negligence as the nation grapples with lax borders and national
Only one media outlet, the invaluable Washington, D.C.-based
newsweekly Human Events, has published the pertinent facts. Editor Terry
Jeffrey reported this week that not only is Guandique an illegal alien, but
also that the INS had given him a green light to work in the country legally
while his application for "Temporary Protected Status (TPS)" was pending.
Guandique's TPS application was eventually denied, but not before he
committed two brutal attacks in the same park where Chandra Levy's body was
TPS is basically a bad-weather pass into the United States.
Whenever a natural disaster strikes, we allow thousands of foreigners to
stay here -- mostly from Latin America -- while their homelands supposedly
recover. But the INS doesn't track down TPS beneficiaries once their status
expires. Worse, INS chief James Ziglar recently remarked during a trip to
the Mexican border that it would be neither "reasonable" nor "practical" to
deport millions of illegal aliens who have snuck across the borders,
violated their visas or overstayed on TPS. How many future Guandiques (or
Attas or Almidhars) are among them? Ziglar doesn't seem to care. He's too
busy nullifying the immigration laws he's supposed to enforce.
The public deserves informed analysis of whether fraud-ridden
immigration programs such as Temporary Protected Status and other various
forms of amnesty have come at the expense of our public safety and the
national interest. But how can the question be answered if the press never
Instead of hard-nosed analysis, observed author William McGowan
at a forum on immigration and media coverage hosted by the Center for
Immigration Studies in Washington, D.C., last week, journalists maintain an
"overly romantic" view of the issue. McGowan's penetrating new book,
"Coloring the News," documents how political correctness has corrupted
coverage of myriad policy issues, including immigration. He noted
superficial reporting of airport security and visa screening issues in the
pro-illegal alien New York Times before September 11, sympathetic stories on
providing driver's licenses to illegal aliens, and the flippant title of a
bleeding-heart New York Times magazine cover piece a few years back: "What
Another panel member and veteran immigration analyst, Lodi
(Calif.) News-Sentinel columnist Joe Guzzardi, reported on the results of a
1,500-article review he conducted for NumbersUSA.com, a grass-roots reform
group, to gauge fairness and balance of immigration coverage. "Very few
stories met the reporters' definition of fair and balanced," he said. Most
news stories are frontloaded with quotes from illegal immigration and open
borders advocates, while opposing views are buried and marginalized.
Indeed, most editors still can't even bring themselves to use
the term "illegal," preferring the flagrantly biased euphemism
Questions about the adequacy of immigration news coverage, as
the Center for Immigration Studies noted, are no longer academic. It's "a
matter of life and death." When will the media take off the rose-colored
blinders and start reporting the true costs of our continuing,
criminal-friendly immigration policies?