Don’t Forget About the Northern Border: Disturbing Number on Terror Watchlist Caught in FY 2023
FY 2023 has come to an end, and that means a full year of border encounter numbers. In FY 2023, a stunning 3.2 million illegal aliens were encountered by CBP at our borders. That number is a 16 percent increase from FY 2022. Every day, Americans witness the border crisis created by the actions of the Joe Biden presidency, and for many Americans, the situation at the border has become personal. The crisis is a national security threat that could strike at any time.
The stories and crazy videos about the border crisis primarily focus on the southern border, and the situation is entirely unacceptable and out of control; FY 2023 saw a record number of encounters. But something very alarming is happening across the U.S. border with Canada.
The Canadian border with the U.S. is incredibly rugged, dotted with forests, mountains, rivers and lakes. It’s over 5,000 miles long, nearly three times the length of the southern U.S. border with Mexico and it’s the longest border between nations in the world. No wall or other similar physical barrier separates the U.S. from Canada, because neither nation has posed a threat to its neighbor.
Now that FY 2023 has closed, there were 189,402 encounters at the northern border, up from 109,535 in FY 2022. The FY 2023 figure include 10,021 encounters by Border Patrol and 179,381 by CBP’s Office of Field Operations. That number is even more appalling when you look back to FY 2020, the last full year of the Trump administration, when northern border encounters stood at 32,376.
When breaking down the encounters, something truly horrifying surfaces. In FY 2023, 172 individuals on the FBI terror watch list were encountered entering the country between ports of entry, and a whopping 564 were encountered trying to enter the country through northern and southern ports of entry. Of the 736 total encounters, 487 occurred at the northern border. The numbers show just how vulnerable the U.S. is, especially at the northern border.
The 487 individuals suspected of being or having ties to terrorists encountered at the northern border are the ones we know about. What every American should be worried about are the ones that were never caught. Since Joe Biden took office, some 1.7 million known gotaways have crossed our borders. There are even more we don’t know about, and it is reasonable to suspect that terrorists are among that number. We don’t know who these people are or what they are doing in the United States. Economic migrants understand that, under the Biden administration they can easily abuse our asylum system and be released into the United States. Those who make the extra effort to avoid being encountered typically have good reason not to get caught.
In addition to the terror watch list suspects, human smuggling is booming along the northern border, particularly in New York, as crossings spike. Often, drivers are paid to pick up a group near the border and drop them off somewhere in the interior of the United States.
The northern border is not secure and presents a massive opportunity for those wishing to harm the United States. Migrants, smugglers and those on the terror watch list are looking for alternative ways to enter the country, and the northern border has become a huge opportunity. The northern border is severely understaffed (as agents have been moved to the southern border to assist in dealing with the crisis there) and lacks any physical barrier.
The United States remains a target for terrorists, and the northern border is incredibly appealing. Yet, Joe Biden and Alejandro Mayorkas seem determined not to fix it.
On October 13, Reps. Mike Kelly and Ryan Zinke, Chairmen of the Northern Border Security Caucus introduced a resolution ”calling on Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to address the alarming number of suspects on the terror watchlist who are crossing into the United States along the Northern border with Canada.” The Representatives want to address the failings of Mayorkas while highlighting the situation at the northern border. They want the northern border secured, because it is clear that our enemies understand where we are vulnerable.