(USA Features) The recently retired head of the U.S. Border Patrol warned in a video to agents that an “unprecedented” number of terrorist suspects have been crossing into the U.S. amid record increases in illegal immigration.
Rodney Scott told his former agency’s 19,000 agents as he retired Aug. 14 their function as a frontline national security force was paramount moving forward, even as the Biden administration remains more focused on illegal migrant families and children.
“Over and over again, I see other people talk about our mission, your mission, and the context of it being immigration or the current crisis today being an immigration crisis,” said Scott in a video message obtained by the Washington Examiner.
“I firmly believe that it is a national security crisis. Immigration is just a subcomponent of it, and right now, it’s just a cover for massive amounts of smuggling going across the southwest border — to include TSDBs at a level we have never seen before. That’s a real threat,” he said, using the acronym for the FBI’s Terror Suspect Database.
“Your peers or you are taking criminals, pedophiles, rapists, murderers, and like I said before, even TSDB alerts off the streets and keeping them safe from America,” Scott continued, the outlet reported.
“Even if we processed several thousand migrants that day and even if thousands of them were allowed into the U.S., you still took those threats off the street, and I think that’s worth it,” he continued.
“So please don’t ever undersell how important your mission is,” told agents.
In July, according to Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas last week, more than 212,000 migrants have illegally crossed into the U.S. from Mexico.
Most of those migrants have come from Central America, reports noted.
The massive influx of migrants means there are fewer Border Patrol agents in the field, however, since about 40% of them have been pulled off patrol duty to assist in processing and transporting illegal aliens.
The smugglers have been taking advantage of the reduced Border Patrol presence, the Examiner added.
They often send large groups of migrant children and families across to be intercepted by Border Patrol agents, then use that distraction to send across contraband and smuggle others in as well.
House Homeland Security Committee ranking member John Katko (R-N.Y.), a former federal prosecutor who was stationed atEl Paso, Texas, told the outlet that the Mexican cartels are “masterfully” exploiting the breakdown in security.
“People they’ve caught in the last few days [in Border Patrol’s El Paso sector] have been under the terror watchlist,” Katko noted.
“Individuals that they have on the watchlist for terrorism are now starting to exploit the southern border.”