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Jihadist Compounds in the US
For reasons beyond the grasp of most people, it seems Islamic jihad compounds are allowed to freely operate within the borders of the United States. With these operations comes not only the future threat of danger and the funneling of millions of dollars to terrorist regimes overseas, but also the very immediate impact of children abused, malnourished, and left to die.
Yet another compound belonging to radical jihadist Siraj Ibn Wahhaj, son of prominent and controversial imam Siraj Wahhaj has been raided in Macon County, Alabama. What appeared at first glance to be little more than a dump, turned out to be a training camp for teaching young children how to engage in warfare. And with it, again, the body of another child.
Taos County Sheriff Jerry Hogrefe, frustrated with the FBI’s wait-and-see attitude, took it upon himself to conduct the initial raid. What he discovered was 11 emaciated, malnourished, and somewhat disturbed children. These children, in their own words, described how they were being trained to be suicidal school shooters.
Security analyst Ryan Mauro describes why these sites, located all over the U.S., haven’t been shut down: “They haven’t been cracked down on because they are not going out trying to kill people right now. They’ve done so in the past, but right now they are not. Why? Because when you build up an infrastructure that massive and you’re making millions of dollars and sending over to Pakistan, why would you carry out a violent plot and risk losing everything?”
What to Watch For
As news of these compounds becomes more widespread, their anonymity will be at risk. Does this mean that the timetable for destruction will be bought forward or the plots abandoned? And what will happen to the children, so badly abused and damaged? This is not just a failing of security services, but a failure of a nation to look after its most at-risk members.
Upping the Ante on Russia?
Attorney General Bill Barr appears to be on the verge of breaking the Russia Collusion scandal wide open. No, he’s not about to side with House Democrats and demand that President Trump be impeached, but he is about to upset the Washington Swamp apple cart.
Barr has given the nod to Connecticut’s top federal prosecutor, John H. Durham, to begin looking into the very roots of the whole Russia affair. Was illegal spying conducted on the Trump campaign? Who ordered it? Why was information the FBI knew to be fraudulent allowed to be used as evidence for a FISA warrant? All this and a lot more is likely to come under the prosecutor’s remit.
At the root of this investigation will be the question of whether the FBI conducted its investigation properly. Durham will be able to subpoena not only government officials but also private citizens in what may turn out to be a more far-reaching probe then the one carried out by Robert Mueller.
What to Watch For
Be on the lookout for a full-court press from the media on the credibility of John Durham. We can expect to see a smear campaign and reputational questioning that would make a National Enquirer journalist blush. However, Barr chose well, as Durham has a history of being apolitical, and according to The Washington Post in 2009, has been “parachuted into crisis situations for both political parties over three decades.”
Both sides of the political aisle have over the years called for an immigration system overhaul – some with more honesty than others – and it looks like President Trump is about to give them what they asked for. But they’re not going to like it.
The “Build America” visa system announced on 16 May has a little something for everyone. It insists that immigrants must have relevant skills to benefit the nation and demands a border wall, but does not limit skilled-immigration in any noticeable way. So, what’s not to like?
Democrats are already hitting back at Trump for two main reasons. The first being that he is the president and that Hillary Clinton is not. The second being that the proposal doesn’t address the DACA situation. But perhaps the reality is something quite different.
Trump suggests that under his new plan, skilled immigration will rise from 12% to 57%, which on the surface sounds like a great idea for a country in the middle of an economic boom, yet it is not politically beneficial to those who rely on a generation of voters in thrall to the welfare state.
What to Watch For
This policy, if enacted, could upset the electoral balance for a generation, so expect some pretty strong resistance to it. The main point of contention will ostensibly be DACA recipients, and this is what will get the most airtime. Another sticking point could be how the president decides to fund his initiative – a question that hasn’t yet been answered.
Washington Whispers & Other Juicy Tidbits
Be on the lookout for:
- The results of the European Union elections. Nigel Farage’s new Brexit Party may just sweep the lot in the U.K., and other nationalist parties do well across the continent.
- Biden will continue to do well in the polls – which will scare the hell out of any Democrat who wants actually to win in 2020. Watch out for renewed coverage of Elizabeth Warren’s previously stalled campaign.
- It’s almost time for Democrats to stop calling for impeachment and start trying to actually come up with a policy that appeals to the electorate. Keep your eyes open for contenders calling for unity and calm in an attempt to appear reasonable.
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