Startling new reports claim that dozens of Al Qaeda terrorists may be living in the United States, mistakenly allowed over as war refugees.
In 2009, the FBI found that two terrorists were living in Bowling Green, Ky., as Iraqi refugees. The two specific men were found to have been directly involved in an attack on American troops in 2005, and their fingerprints were even found on IEDs in Iraq. Still, the men were able to get refugee status through a flawed U.S. refugee screening process.
After the government realized that two terrorist bomb makers were living in the country, they began a large investigation to see if anyone else had gotten in the same way.
A report from ABC News now claims that several dozen terrorists may have been let over as war refugees.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if there were many more than that,” said Michael McCaul, Chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security. “And these are trained terrorists in the art of bombmaking that are inside the United States; and quite frankly, from a homeland security perspective, that really concerns me.”
A newly released video from 2010 shows Waad Ramadan Alwan handling weapons while living in Kentucky. The surveillance video was obtained by the FBI and led to the arrest of Alwan and Mohanad Shareef Hammadi in 2011. One agent that was assigned to the operation to capture Alwan says that, at one point, he had bragged to an informant about killing American soldiers while in Iraq, claiming he had them for “lunch and dinner.”
“How do you have somebody that we now know was a known actor in terrorism overseas, how does that person get into the United States?” asked Bowling Green Police Chief Doug Hawkins to ABC News. “How do they get into our community?”
Peter Boogaard, spokesperson for the Department of Homeland Security, said in a statement that the United States has improved on its screening process over the years.
“Our procedures continue to check applicants’ names and fingerprints against records of individuals known to be security threats, including the terrorist watchlist, or of law enforcement concern,” said Boogaard in the statement. “These checks are vital to advancing the U.S. government’s twin goal of protecting the world’s most vulnerable persons while ensuring U.S. national security and public safety.”
The FBI says that nearly 70,000 Iraqi war refugees are normal, law-abiding immigrants looking for a better life.