Midland County, Texas (CBS HOUSTON) – Midland County Sheriff Gary Painter said that law enforcement agencies along the “wide open” border have received alerts to be on the lookout for terrorists from the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria crossing into the United States.
Painter, who said he has worked along the border for “about eight years,” stated that alerts have been issued to border law enforcement to be on the lookout for suspicious terrorist activity, specifically involving ISIS cells being smuggled into the United States.
“I received an intelligence report that said that there was ISIS cells that were active in the Juarez area, which is the northern part of the Chihuahua state, and that they were moving around over there, that there was some activity…” Painter told Fox News. The report asked “for the sheriffs along the border to be on the alert, for all law enforcement to be on the alert, and to be on the lookout for these people maybe trying to come across.”
Painter sidestepped any direct knowledge that ISIS, specifically, is along the border, but he reiterated that the border “is wide open.”
“Well I’m saying the border is wide open, there is no control on the border, it’s not shut off,” said Painter. “There’s places along the Rio Grande you can walk across, there’s no water in it. I worked the border for eight years I walked back and forth across the Rio Grande; I was in Mexico, I was on this side. I never got challenged.
“There’s always a way to get across, there’s coyotes that bring those people across for thousands of dollars.”
Painter noted that “Muslim” items have been strewn along the border and estimated that 10 to 15 million “undocumented aliens” have crossed the border.
“I think it’d be naive to say that (ISIS is) not here…We have found Muslim clothing, they have found Quran books that are lying on the side of the trail, so we know that there are Muslims that have come across and are being smuggled into the United States,” Painter told Fox News.
Making comments similar to what he told CNN last week, Painter had a direct message for the possible terrorist cells.
“If they show their ugly head in our area, we’ll send them to hell,” said Painter. “And I think the United States needs to get busy. And they need to bomb them, they need to take them out.”
When reached out to by the Midland Reporter-Telegram, the FBI did not comment or provide a statement about the terrorist reports Painter claims to have received.
President employs 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force Resolution to evade Congress
President Obama’s first initiated war against an Islamic terrorist group is authorized, the White House says, by George W. Bush-signed legislation that Mr. Obama has criticized and wanted to repeal since last year.
Since beginning airstrikes last month against the Islamic State, also known by the acronyms ISIS and ISIL, the White House has said it does not need congressional approval to carry out such missions.
Last week, on the 13th anniversary of al Qaeda’s attacks on the United States, the administration announced why, saying President Bush’s Authorization for Use of Military Force resolution in 2001 is all the authority Mr. Obama needs.
In a May 2013 speech to a military audience at the National Defense University, Mr. Obama portrayed the law as dated and as a potential blank check to get the U.S. into wars.
“The AUMF is now nearly 12 years old,” he said. “Unless we discipline our thinking, our definitions, our actions, we may be drawn into more wars we don’t need to fight, or continue to grant presidents unbound powers more suited for traditional armed conflicts between nation states.”
President Barack Obama addresses the nation from the Cross Hall in the White House in Washington, Wednesday, Sept. 10, 2014. Opening a new military front in the Middle East, Obama authorized U.S. airstrikes inside Syria for the first time, along with expanded strikes in Iraq as part of a broad mission to root out the violent Islamic State militants whose reign of terror has spread across both countries. (AP Photo/Saul Loeb, Pool)
President Barack Obama addresses the nation from the Cross Hall in the … more >
Last week, The Washington Times asked a National Security Council spokeswoman whether the president still wants to repeal the authorization, given the rise of the Islamic State terrorist group.
“On the 2001 AUMF, we remain committed to engaging with Congress and the American people to refine, and ultimately repeal, the AUMF,” the spokeswoman said. “The president has made clear that he wishes to take America off a permanent war footing.”
Two days later, the White House cited the authorization as Mr. Obama’s go-ahead for airstrikes on the Islamic State.
Said Charles “Cully” Stimson, a national security law analyst at the Heritage Foundation: “There’s not only a disconnect but a failure to clearly articulate in a public forum the legal basis for the strikes.”
White House press secretary Josh Earnest defended the irony of the president’s reliance on a war authorization law that he has wanted to be changed and repealed since at least 2013.
Mr. Earnest did not repeat the call for repeal Thursday as he explained to reporters why the 2001 resolution applies to the Islamic State.
“The president is ready to engage in a conversation with members of Congress as it relates to this specific AUMF,” he said. “And we welcome or would welcome a show of support from the United States Congress for the strategy that the president has laid out.”
Mr. Obama went on national TV Wednesday night to announce a counterterrorism campaign to destroy the Islamic State over time. The U.S. will provide airstrikes, intelligence, training and advice. Iraqis and Syrians will muster their ground forces.
Mr. Obama campaigned for re-election as a president who was put into office to “end wars, not start them.”
The Obama administration has not given a name to the military operation, a departure from past Pentagon practices.
Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/sep/14/obama-sought-repeal-of-bush-war-statute-now-used-t/#ixzz3DP4js36R
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Failure by the US to investigate Saudi Arabia’s connection to the 9/11 attacks is among the factors that led to the rise of ISIS, Bob Graham, a former senator and co-chairman of the official inquiry into 9/11, told The Independent in an interview.
Graham has expressed doubts about the US’s reliance on Saudi Arabia as an ally in fight against Islamic State (also known as ISIS or ISIL). Earlier this week President Obama announced a plan, according to which Saudi Arabia is supposed to provide training for moderate Syrian rebels, who are expected to fight both the ISIS and Assad’s forces.
‘No safe haven’: Obama declares airstrikes on Islamic State ‘wherever it exists’
The former senator said it was not the best decision to rely on the country which has often been accused of sponsoring “the most extreme elements among the Sunni.”
The US appears to have a history of turning a blind eye to the disputable activities of its long-time ally. Graham, who was in the Senate for 18 years and chaired the Senate Intelligence Committee for more than a year following 9/11, questions the way US intelligence treated the Saudis after the attack on the Twin Towers.
Despite the fact that 15 out of 19 of the hijackers were Saudis, some 144 of their compatriots mostly from the Saudi aristocracy, were able to return home to Saudi Arabia within days of the attack without being questioned by the FBI.
“There were several incidents [in which US officials] were inexplicably solicitous to Saudis,” Senator Graham recalls.
“I believe that the failure to shine a full light on Saudi actions and particularly its involvement in 9/11 has contributed to the Saudi ability to continue to engage in actions that are damaging to the US – and in particular their support for ISIS,” he says.
US allies cultivated Islamic State. Now IS plans to ‘raise flag of Allah in White House’
Some light on the Saudi role in the 9/11 tragedy could be shed if the 28 redacted pages from the inquiry were made public. Graham has been campaigning for that.
Obama promised to release the censored documents during his first presidential campaign, but haven’t yet delivered on the promise.
Graham speaks of close personal ties between the Bush family and the Saudi Arabia rulers. But why the “policy of covering up Saudi involvement [in 9/11] persisted under the Obama administration” is something he fails to understand.