Smuggling network guided illegals from Middle East terror hotbeds to U.S. border

A smuggling network has managed to sneak illegal immigrants from Middle Eastern terrorism hotbeds straight to the doorstep of the U.S., including helping one Afghan who authorities say was part of an attack plot in North America.

Immigration officials have identified at least a dozen Middle Eastern men smuggled into the Western Hemisphere by a Brazilian-based network that connected them with Mexicans who guided them to the U.S. border, according to internal government documents reviewed by The Washington Times.

Those smuggled included Palestinians, Pakistanis and the Afghan man who Homeland Security officials said had family ties to the Taliban and was “involved in a plot to conduct an attack in the U.S. and/or Canada.” He is in custody, but The Times is withholding his name at the request of law enforcement to protect investigations.

Some of the men handled by the smuggling network were nabbed before they reached the U.S., but others made it into the country. The Afghan man was part of a group of six from “special-interest countries.” Continue reading

Russian Naval Expansion Threatens U.S. Influence in the Western Hemisphere

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On Wednesday, April 20, 2016, the New York Times reported that the most Russian attack submarines, in two decades, are patrolling the coastlines of “Scandinavia and Scotland, along with the Mediterranean Sea and the North Atlantic.” This increased area of patrols and the Russian’s build up of arms is approaching Cold War levels, and signals the increasingly competitive and uneasy relationship between the U.S. and Russia.

Russia’s activity within the Western Hemisphere has increased since the beginning of he Obama Administration. Russian activity in the Western Hemisphere first began with the sale of military equipment to Venezuela that soon transitioned into the two nations participating in joint naval exercises. It was believed that the Russia decision to launch the exercise came after the U.S. announced it would be reforming the 4th fleet to patrol the Caribbean. Continue reading

Why Did Pope Francis Push for a U.S.-Cuba Thaw?

The surprise restoration of relations between the United States and Cuba represents a major victory for the pope. Is it cause for celebration?

“How many divisions does the pope of Rome have?” That was Soviet leader Joseph Stalin’s reply after British Prime Minister Winston Churchill advised him, in the aftermath of World War ii, to consider the Vatican’s perspective while laying out a plan for the future of Eastern Europe.

Stalin respected only brute force. The Vatican had none, so he dismissed it as irrelevant.

But today Stalin and the Soviet behemoth he led are long gone, while the papal system remains. And it was actually a pope—blending politics with religion—who sparked the revolution that eventually toppled the Berlin Wall, and brought down that Soviet system.

Continue reading

Russia ‘to reopen Cold War Cuban listening post used to spy on America’

Lest we also forget the quote in Pravda where Putin reportedly said Russian nuclear missiles were already reinstalled in Cuba.

  • Facility at Lourdes was the largest Russian listening post abroad
  • It was mothballed in 2001 after relations with the U.S. warmed
  • But relations with the West have deteriorated amid the Ukraine crisis
  • Moscow has also shown a new interest in Latin America and Cuba
  • Last week, Russia agreed to write off 90 per cent of Cuba’s debt

Russia has agreed to reopen a major Cold War listening post on Cuba that was used to spy on America, it was reported today.

Moscow-based daily Kommersant claimed Russia and Cuba have struck a deal ‘in principle’ after President Vladimir Putin visited the island last week.

Citing several sources within Russian authorities, the respected daily wrote: ‘The agreements were finalised while President Vladimir Putin visited Havana last Friday. Continue reading

Experts: Iran Exerting Troubling Influence in Latin America

Iran and its terrorist proxy groups’ influence in Latin America remains a troubling security threat to the region and world, experts said at a congressional hearing on Tuesday.

Hezbollah, a Shiite terrorist group based in Lebanon and sponsored by Iran, has established illicit networks in Latin America in the last few decades to provide millions annually for its global operations, experts on the region told the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade.

Those networks involve money laundering, counterfeiting, piracy, and drug trafficking in cooperation with local criminal groups like the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). Continue reading

North America to Drown in Oil as Mexico Ends Monopoly

The flood of North American crude oil is set to become a deluge as Mexico dismantles a 75-year-old barrier to foreign investment in its oilfields.

Plagued by almost a decade of slumping output that has degraded Mexico’s take from a $100-a-barrel oil market, President Enrique Pena Nieto is seeking an end to the state monopoly over one of the biggest crude resources in the Western Hemisphere. The doubling in Mexican oil output that Citigroup Inc. said may result from inviting international explorers to drill would be equivalent to adding another Nigeria to world supply, or about 2.5 million barrels a day. Continue reading

Rising Red tide: China encircles U.S. by sailing warships in American waters, arming neighbors

This is far from a reaction to Washington’s “pivot” as the CCP running China would say. Fact of the matter is, China’s threatening rise is what lead to the pivot in the first place. This is something that they would’ve done, regardless of the situation, yet more of now since they have a weak administration in the White House that doesn’t want its credit card cut off from Beijing.

China has been quietly taking steps to encircle the United States by arming western hemisphere states, seeking closer military, economic, and diplomatic ties to U.S. neighbors, and sailing warships into U.S. maritime zones.

The strategy is a Chinese version of what Beijing has charged is a U.S. strategy designed to encircle and “contain” China. It is also directed at countering the Obama administration’s new strategy called the pivot to Asia. The pivot calls for closer economic, diplomatic, and military ties to Asian states that are increasingly concerned about Chinese encroachment throughout that region.

“The Chinese are deftly parrying our ‘Pivot to the Pacific’ with their own elegant countermoves,” said John Tkacik, a former State Department Asia hand. Continue reading