Here is U.S. Congressman Beto O’ Rourke’s response to ISIS near El Paso and Mexico. His statement appeared on his Facebook page. For more info, check out the links below.
Is Isis in Juárez?
Some have shared stories on social media suggesting that is the case. Others have contacted my office to see if it’s true.
Today I reached out to the Mexican government, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Northern Command.
None of them have found any evidence, credible or otherwise, that Isis is in Juárez.
Stories like these are good at scaring people and getting attention for those who spread them. But they are terrible for the country’s image of the border, for El Paso’s ability to recruit talent, and for our region’s opportunity to capitalize on the benefits of being the largest bi-national community in the world.
Stories like these have come up before. The 1981 story about Libyan hit squads in Juárez. The fears that Al-Qaeda was going to invade after 9/11. The claims about Isis crossing the border last year.
As a member of the House Homeland Security committee in the 113th Congress, I asked the director of the FBI, the director of the National Counterterrorism Center and the Secretary of Homeland Security if there was currently any terrorist threat on the Southern border. They answered that there was not, nor had there ever been, any terrorist, terrorist plot, or terrorist organization that was able to exploit our border with Mexico.
Beyond hurting our image nationally, these kinds of false stories could lead us to take our eye off real threats to the homeland. While we should always remain vigilant at our borders — and we currently spend $18 billion a year to do so — the greatest proven homeland threats have been at our airports and with homegrown terrorists radicalized over the internet. Not in El Paso, the country’s safest city 4 years in a row.
El Paso — let’s fight back with the facts. Share this post or this link to statements from the national intelligence community: