ISIS and the Border

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41 Responses

  1. Nonnie says:

    “This…is where the border is “porous” and “open”… but the politicians aren’t going to interfere with commerce, nor are they going to talk about this on Fox News.” Of course. Wouldn’t want to hurt the fat cats’ pocketbooks.

    I was thinking they would more than likely being flying in business class, through Europe, and then purchase what they need to do their “business.”

  2. Jean says:

    Thank you for this article Michael.

  3. Steve Wright says:

    My belief is that predictions of the USA’s future can best be formed by looking at Europe, especially England today, then fast forward a couple decades. Thus, the greatest threat from ISIS will be American citizens with passports. England at least seems to be awake to this reality, and its prime minister is stepping up to the plate that our nation’s vacuum of leadership has left empty (to mix metaphors 🙂 )

    As far as the commerce discussion is concerned (and the exact same discussion was made after 9/11 when it came to the shipping ports and containers) – it is not an all or nothing option. There are many regular shippers with solid international relationships and security in place that do not have to be checked each and every time they go through. That would grind things to a standstill and I do not equate the free flow of commerce as something that is just for the rich fat cats. Thank God we live in a country that has it.

    We had a strike out here once having to do with the docks and truckers or something and in a couple of days the shelves were bare – regular people unable to buy the things needed for their children and families. Not to mention the collateral damage in loss of income and payroll to thousands of average workers and small business owners. When a Mom can’t buy diapers or formula for her baby because it is sitting somewhere awaiting inspection, that is not about the rich.

    Michael’s point of course is valid – that people can be bribed and threatened, but the larger point I make is that not all trucks pose the same potential risk. Anyone can be bribed or security breached, but the all or nothing mentality is not the issue.

    The real solution will start when our government stops being politically correct and is in fear of the dreaded profiling charge. No different than our airports. We all know it is a joke to make EVERYONE take off their shoes and go through the exact same procedures, with an 80 year-old grandma or a 3 year-old little girl just as equally likely to be pulled aside. As a result the all or nothing approach makes airline travel far more difficult and yes, has hurt American jobs and payrolls.

    Of course, if I was an enemy of the USA, I would put far less energy into physical terrorism and bombs or attacks, and concentrate on using cyber-warfare to bring us down.

  4. Jean says:

    Steve, where and what is the vacuum of leadership in this country?

    What has not been done that you think should have?

  5. Steve Wright says:

    Steve, where and what is the vacuum of leadership in this country?
    ————————————————
    Really Jean?

    I don’t have time or desire to argue whether or not Obama is a serious leader of the free world. I made an opinion, and if your opinion is that the guy is a pillar of leadership, then you are entitled to it. Not everything has to be a debate.

    I simply suggest watching a little political news.

    In fact google Barack Obama ISIS threat and then google David Cameron ISIS threat and compare and contrast the actions, speeches and world opinions of the leaders as to ISIS

    I’ll help you out….Even Democrats like Feinstein (and there are others) recognize a problem.

    http://www.cnn.com/2014/08/31/politics/obama-cautious-isis/index.html

    (And no, leadership does not simply equate to dropping bombs or sending troops overseas. That’s a red herring.)

  6. Jean says:

    So, in other words, you think Obama should be (should have been) doing something leaderly, but don’t know what that something is. Precious.

  7. ISIS is already here. That’s like closing the barn door after the horses are gone.

  8. victorious says:

    Michael, thanks for this article. It sheds light allowing me to see where I need to abound in compassion for the refugees in the desert who may arrive in the riverbed just beyond my house. It shows me where I can address my concerns and prayers for national security issues.

    Whether I find a Hispanic refugee, an Islamic jihadist or an angry displaced American with blown expectations in the ditch beside the road, I need to be prepared to be their neighbor; which is the point of Jesus’ parable about the Good Samaritan.

  9. Jean says:

    As the drumbeat to war grows louder in the media and from politicians, one should not forget the parallels to 2003. Now as then, the American people are being inundated with dire warnings that if America does not intervene (and intervene now) militarily in the Middle East, America’s security will be at grave risk. In 2003, the American people were deceived, and our country, the families of our fallen soldiers, our wounded soldiers, the dead and wounded Iraqis, and the region of the Middle East are still paying for the consequences of that deception and will be for a generation or more to come.

    2003 is not 2014, and I’m not suggesting that the ISIS does not pose a threat to America. However, I think the American people deserve a robust debate and to see the evidence of the threat before American military intervention intensifies. Military intervention has significant costs, in terms of our troops lives, the lives of the civilians that are killed and wounded during war, and the finances of our country, which ultimately weakens our country that we leave to our children and grandchildren. Thus, cautiousness is in order, and war must be the last resort. Any benefits to ware must outweigh the costs.

    The American Evangelical Church is bankrupt when it comes to articulating a Christian response to these types of crisis. So, far, what I’ve heard sounds like many evangelical Christians are perfectly happy to let the likes of Fox news write their theology of conflict.

    Let’s look at this theology a little bit?

    1) Use every conflict as a tool to delegitimize your political opponent (and as a consequences his/her constituents). He’s too cautious… or he should have consulted with Congress. If he would have taken military action in Syria, ISIS wouldn’t be a threat… oh, wait, he asked for congressional approval to take military action in Syria, but Congress wouldn’t authorize it. He’s weak. He is un-American. His constituents are the takers.

    Delegitimizing your opponent is what one does in warfare to one’s enemies. When you delegitimize your opponent, it makes it easier and motivates you to kill him. Delegitimization deconstructs. The proponents of this tool are deconstructing our union. Instead of building bridges and seeking understanding and compromise, enemies are created, lines in the sand drawn. The common ground grows ever narrower until it disappears.

    Delegitimization is also a tool used by the political left on its issues.

    2) Intervene militarily (intelligence, weapons, advisers, bombing, and/or troops) anywhere and everywhere where America is opposed. Let’s look at the biggies: Iraq, Syria, Iran, Libya, Ukraine, N. Korea, South China Sea. What am I leaving out? How much blood will be shed? What shall we cut to cover these costs? Home heating assistance, food stamps, Medicaid, Head Start, unemployment assistance, highway funds? What am I leaving out?

    So far as I have heard, the evangelical church is theologically bankrupt in addressing the matter of national security and America’s role in the world. Even theological principles such as the “just war theory” apparently are too week for the challenges of the 21st century. The church may say a lot, but nothing distinguishes the church from the politicians and pundits on Fox News.

    What we need are Christians capable of forming a Christian message to the horrors of ISIS, who are courageous enough to articulate that message to Christians and our political leaders.

  10. Jtk says:

    I am very generous when it comes to our immigration and refugee policies.

    At the same time, I am concerned about our nation’s security post 9/11.

    I don’t think we will do anything to change our current immigration and refugee policy until there is another terrorist attack that is explicitly linked to a border or immigration issue.

    When and if that happens, I worry we will make some horrid policies.

  11. Jtk says:

    Jean,

    I’m hesitant to consider military options.

    But 2 things I’ve heard from well-rounded media reports (neither Democracy Now nor World Net Daily) is that:
    1). ISIS is the most well funded and well armed terrorist group that has ever existed in human history
    And
    2). “Hundreds” of Americans are actively working with ISIS.

    If true, this is very concerning and almost certainly will yield something terrible sooner or later.

    We better gird our loins.

  12. Jean says:

    Jtk,
    I’ve heard the same things.

  13. I have a relative who works at the Long Beach harbor.

    He is in the job of managing the off-loads and on-loads so that they go smoothly.

    He tells me that they can’t inspect every shipping container crossing the port, and they don’t.

    It is just a fact of modern commerce.

  14. Michael says:

    My hope in writing this is that when people read the nonsense online and see it on TV they will understand that you can send 10,000 National Guard troops to the border and build a wall from here to hell and back and it will not deter one terrorist from crossing over…if they are coming from there at all.

    The American people are being manipulated and lied to…and that…is the truth.

  15. Michael says:

    The problem with formulating a Christian response to ISIS is that ISIS is anti-Christ and the only currency they trade in is violence.
    I believe that this sort of violence is not only the evil inherent in men, but demonically inspired as well.

  16. Jean says:

    #15,

    That’s puzzling. Do we put Christ on the shelf when an anti-Christ is involved?

    Does man have it within himself to defeat an anti-Christ?

  17. JTK says:

    Michael,

    What you wrote adds a lot to the conversation.

    Praying that people pay attention and care…

  18. JTK says:

    Jorge Ramos’ book
    “Dying to Cross: The Worst Immigrant Tragedy in American History” was so tragic and insightful.

    …there is a lot more to the immigration story than just the border though….

  19. Michael says:

    Jean,

    I never put Christ on the shelf.
    He didn’t leave great instructions on how the state should confront forces like this.

  20. Michael says:

    JTK,

    Thank you…and you speak well that there is so much more to the immigration story…and the border story as well.

  21. Jean says:

    Agree Michael, but he did leave instructions for how the church should, which was the subject of my #9.

  22. Michael says:

    Jean,

    I’m not clear on that either.
    How should the church respond?

  23. Jean says:

    #22,

    “How should the church respond?”

    That’s a question all Christians should ponder from a Christian worldview and pray about. Here are a few foundational principles to the Christian worldview:

    1) Christ is reigning at the right hand of the Father at this very moment. All governing authorities are subject to His authority.

    2) The leaders of our country are the servants of Christ. They deserve the Christian’s respect and prayers.

    3) The enemies of the Christian are also made in God’s image.

    4) Christ died for the sins of the Christian’s enemies.

    5) Suffering and persecution destroyed the power of death.

    6) The Christian does not fear death.

  24. Patrick Kyle says:

    For me, the jury is still out as to whether there is a terrorist threat due to our porous borders, but I deeply disagree with you on this whole illegal immigration mess. Fiscally and culturally this a disaster. No work? Wages low? Our ‘captains of industry’ recently lobbied Congress for more foreign worker visas while announcing thousands of lay offs.

    The abundance of cheap illegal labor has driven down wages, and increased competition for jobs here in SoCal. On any number of street corners in LA you can purchase phony green cards and Social Security cards. For $400 you can get a real SS number, and DMV employees were recently busted providing legit Driver’s licenses to people under the table.

    When I was in college here I saw and heard the Hispanic student group Mecha advocate for an autonomous homeland for ‘LaRaza’ in the American Southwest called ‘Aztlan.'( They are still at it, and their literature was full of references to ‘the blood’ and it’s attachment to ‘the land.’ You may recognize such terminology because it is almost word for word taken from the early writings of proponents of the Third Reich.

    People also say what they want, but having been the recipient of Food Stamps in the past, I know that there are many illegals on Food Stamps (EBT) and other forms of public assistance.

    In the past, people who immigrated here attempted to integrate into the society that was already here. Now many groups come and make no effort to integrate, but instead demand concessions from our society and government to accommodate their refusal to integrate. This bodes ill for our country. Doesn’t matter which country they come from. Me and millions of others say ‘NO’ to this kind of thing, and if our politicians don’t get on board they will find themselves out of a job. Or in some areas, among some constituents, worse than that.

  25. Well, some of you guys can turn the other cheek if the stuff pops up in your ‘hood. I’m going to defend myself and my family if it pops up here…just like any threat.

  26. Jim says:

    Jesus told his guys to sell their coats and buy a sword. You know, like Roman soldiers carried. I took his advice.

    Michael is correct in that we are in the dark regarding what God wants our military to do re IS. I say we try something really different and tell the region that they’re on their own.

  27. Linda Pappas says:

    Just be careful what bandwagon you choose to jump on. It could be that underneath it all, you are being used for not so obvious agendas that you would ordinarily support—for instant, take:

    http://www.aol.com/article/2014/09/01/ku-klux-klan-steps-up-recruitment-focuses-on-immigration/20955456/?icid=maing-grid7%7Cmain5%7Cdl2%7Csec1_lnk3%26pLid%3D523305

  28. gomergirl says:

    For once, I agree with Alex. I think that we need to pray for the spiritual battle that rages beyond our visible reality, but I also reserve the right to defend my family and my neighbors against the evil that prevents itself in my tangible reality.

    And there are lies and spin on both sides, Michael. Do not think that just because one side or the other says a “fact” that it is real or true. Disbelief and denial can be just as dangerous and overstating a danger. Be aware and pray for discernment and wisdom. And don’t trust the media on either side.

  29. Jim says:

    Re #27, fortunately, as a nation we’ve moved passed the era of the klan and other WS groups. Legit militia groups know them as wacko fringe elements that they want no part of.

  30. Michael says:

    GG,

    I don’t watch the news.
    I’ve spent years trying to understand our border and (which in many ways is a nation unto itself) and human migration here and elsewhere.
    I understand that there is a huge divide in this country over immigration policies.
    My concern is that as we discuss those policies we do so from a place grounded in as much truth and reality as we can.
    I believe that groups like ISIS are a threat…but when one group is directing our attention to one place for politically motivated reasons while the enemy is entering elsewhere, that group is an ally of terror.
    I wanted to help people understand how the border works…and I hope I added some insight for my readers.

  31. Michael says:

    Linda,

    Some of my email looks like it came straight out of a KKK textbook…

  32. Steve Wright says:

    My one qualifier about us looking like Europe in another decade or two….gun ownership.

    Not sure what exactly that will mean, but it is the most fundamental difference between us and them going forward….

  33. Michael says:

    Looks like they beheaded another American reporter…if I were the President there would be nothing left but stains where these devils dwell.
    http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/steven-sotloff-video-appears-show-isis-execution-american/story?id=25216725

  34. Jim says:

    Why Michael?

  35. Michael says:

    Jim,

    It’s the job of the state to protect and defend America and Americans.
    These executions are acts of war.
    I believe there are people and movements that are overcome by evil…and if they are not exterminated they will exterminate you.
    It’s not just a war on the country…it’s a war on journalists and truth, a war that was lost in Mexico and is in grave danger here.
    Our journalists are being slain by money, not knives…

    I could be completely wrong…but that’s how I see it this morning.

  36. erunner says:

    As long as these animals have hostages they will parade them before the cameras and continue to behead them. It seems even if we wiped ISIS off the map another group would pop up to replace them. They must be stopped. How that happens I don’t know.

  37. Jim says:

    Michael,

    There are more gang members in Chicago than there are members of IS. I don’t think you’d call for drone strikes if the killed a reporter.

    You’re too smart to ignore the history of that region. I refuse to participate in the bloodlust that leads to another foreign war, and you should too. The situation is an illusion, as we still control Iraq. ‘Truth” is not even a part of the equation.

  38. Steve Wright says:

    Jim, I do hear you and agree with much of what you say about foreign wars. But do you deny that another 9/11 attack is only made easier if these cockroaches have free reign to assemble, plot, train and then act – because they are ignored by the civilized world?

    Japan bombed us, then we went to Japan and conquered her. No more fighting on our soil.

    If I understand you correctly, we have to wait until Islamic (whether ISIS, Al Qaeda or Al Shmyda) terrorists that are financed and headquartered in a foreign land first attack and kill thousands of Americans on our own soil…THEN we can retaliate.

    Is that accurate.

    I also wanted to ask you what your feelings are about Cameron’s latest power grab, given you are a lover of freedom (as am I). With bombings off the table, would you support similar measures here to what Cameron is now doing in the UK?

  39. Jim says:

    Steve,

    We had OBL in a kill or capture position ten times (not one) before 9/11. Our involvement in the wars of the 20th and 21st centuries were predetermined, and we just waited for a sketchy excuse or invented one.

    I don’t know the endgame, and just assume that men love war, but we have the resources on the ground right now to end IS but choose not to.

    I won’t be fooled again by a system lies it’s way into conflict for fun and profit. Public opinion is turning, and I’m sure shock and awe is coming soon, but I stand against it.

    I’ve been too busy today to digest what Cameron is doing.

  40. Steve Wright says:

    I don’t see 9/11 as either a sketchy excuse or an invented one. But thanks for answering…

  41. Jim says:

    Steve,

    9/11 is justification for what?

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