Donald Trump is serious about fighting terrorism.
While Obama talked a good game about “keeping America safe,” his actions told a different tale.
Under Obama, dangerous foreign visitors — even some with terrorist connections — entered and set up shop in America.
But President Trump is singing a different tune, and his latest plan could place even further restrictions on travelers, making it harder for them to commit acts of terror.
Hoping to undo the damage set in motion by Obama, and establish a new standard for travel, Trump’s team is considering bold measures.
According to the Wall Street Journal, Trump is contemplating using “extreme vetting” of foreign travelers, such as forcing them to reveal their cell phone contacts and Internet passwords.
The administration also wants to subject more visa applicants to intense security reviews and have embassies spend more time interviewing each applicant. The changes could apply to people from all over the world, including allies like France and Germany, the WSJ reports.
According to The Hill, the ideological probe could include questions such as “whether visitors support honor killings and whether they regard the ‘sanctity of human life.’”
If foreign travelers are searching jihadist sites, or communicating with known terrorists, the U.S. should have a right to know.
As many political officials have said, traveling to the U.S. shouldn’t be a guaranteed right, but a privilege.
“Every step taken to focus vetting on high-risk populations, to employ scarce security resources more wisely and minimize the inconvenience to travelers, increases the chance that the enhanced vetting system will be denounced as unfair and discriminatory.
The U.S. government has taken a great deal of heat for missing social media indications of radicalism after terrorist attacks. Not only is there bureaucratic apprehension about suffering another “lone wolf” attack from someone who turns out to have a long history of surfing jihadi websites, but no doubt, there are agents throughout the national security apparatus who think it is very reasonable to catch potential terrorists by scouting their online activity.”
While it makes sense a “lone wolf” attack could be avoided by preemptively stopping a terrorist attack, some say the measure goes too far.
However, Homeland Security officials defend the considered measure, reiterating the U.S. should do more to determine who foreign visitors are communicating with.
Those who wish to do the U.S. harm would be reluctant to reveal their sources, or may be spooked enough to not carry out an attack.
The New York Post reports:
The cellphones of foreign visitors usually are examined as they try to enter the country, but that doesn’t usually occur during the application process.
A senior Homeland Security official told the newspaper that the aim is to “figure out who you are communicating with. What you can get on the average person’s phone can be invaluable.”
One of the more controversial aspects of the proposed vetting procedure would be the “ideological test” — although it was used during the Cold War to screen anarchists and members of the Communist Party.
The official said questions under consideration would include whether applicants believe in honor killings, their views on the treatment of women and whom they see as legitimate targets in military attacks.”
Do you think foreign visitors should be forced to reveal their social media passwords and cell phone contacts? Or do you think anyone should be allowed to travel freely to America, no questions asked?
Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.