Friday, May 13, 2011

What Happened on AA Flight 1561

What Happened on AA Flight 1561
By Michelle Malkin

If you listen to the passengers and crew who flew on American Airlines Flight 1561 last weekend, there's no doubt about what happened on their harrowing trip: A Yemeni man shrieking "Allahu akbar!" at the top of his lungs more than 30 times rushed the cockpit door twice intending to take down the plane and kill everyone on board.

The clammy, sweaty lone male passenger exhibited classic symptoms of what Middle East scholar and author Daniel Pipes has dubbed "Sudden Jihad Syndrome" -- a seemingly random outbreak of threatening behavior or violence by a hysterical Muslim adherent who had not previously exhibited signs of Islamic radicalization. It took at least four men to tackle and restrain Rageh Ahmed Mohammed al-Murisi. "There was no question in everybody's mind that he was going to do something," passenger Angelina Marty told the San Francisco Chronicle.

And no, that "something" did not mean enlisting his fellow flyers in a midair flash mob performance of the "Hallelujah Chorus."

Not everyone was so grounded in reality. Bleeding-heart sympathizers seriously speculated that al-Murisi had simply mistaken clearly marked lavatory doors for the clearly marked cockpit door (because, you know, it's normal to shout "God is great" repeatedly just before relieving yourself as your plane is about to land). Some federal authorities and media whitewashers proclaimed that al-Murisi's motives were "unknown."

If only al-Murisi had been screaming phrases from the Constitution. The Selective Motive Determination Machine -- the same one that rushed to pin the Tucson massacre on the Tea Party, the GOP and Fox News without a shred of evidence -- would have kicked in to full gear.

On Wednesday, a San Francisco judge denied al-Murisi bail. Unburdened by the paralyzing prissiness of political correctness, federal prosecutors noted that "Allahu akbar" was the same refrain invoked by the 9/11 hijackers over Shanksville, Pa., and by the would-be Christmas Day bomber over Detroit. Not to mention Fort Hood jihadist Nidal Hasan, the Frankfurt, Germany, jihadist who killed two U.S. airmen on a bus in March, the young Portland, Ore., Christmas tree lighting bomb plotter, every last suicide bomber across Europe, Africa, South Asia and the Middle East, and every last evil al-Qaida beheader broadcast on video over the past decade.

So how, despite a massive transportation and homeland security apparatus, did al-Murisi get into this country and get on a plane? He had no keys, no luggage, $47 cash, two curious posted checks totaling $13,000, and a trove of expired and current state IDs from New York and California -- where relatives said he had not notified them that he was coming. He is young, male, brought no family with him, had no job or other discernible income, and hails from the terror-coddling nation of Yemen. Yes, the same Yemen that is Osama bin Laden's ancestral home, harbors al-Qaida operatives who are burning the "torch of jihad," and is deemed a "special interest country" whose citizens warrant increased scrutiny by DHS when they cross the border illegally.

As I reported last month, a federal watchdog revealed that TSA's counterterrorism specialists failed to detect 16 separate jihad operatives who moved through target airports "on at least 23 different occasions." Neutered by Islamophobia-phobia and an "overtime over security" mentality, our State Department consular offices' and airline security bureaucracy's stance toward the al-Murisis slipping through their snaking lines is:

Nothing to see here; move along.

At least the heroes of Flight 1561 who refused to sit silent learned the proper 9/11 lesson. "I swore to myself that I would never be a victim" after the 2001 attacks, passenger Larry Wright, one of the men who brought al-Murisi down, told reporters earlier this week. The only effective homeland security begins and ends with a culture of self-defense. Just as there are no atheists in foxholes, there are no "see no jihad, hear no jihad, speak no jihad" delusionists on airplanes with Allahu akbar-chanting flyers beating down doors.

The Amnesty Bandwagon Rides Again
By Michelle Malkin

The public relations campaign for President Obama's latest revival of "immigration reform" makes one thing crystal clear: This is not, and never has been, about homeland security. This is not, and never has been, about economic security. It's about political security, plain and cynical.

In conjunction with Tuesday's renewed White House push in Texas for a "new pathway to citizenship" for millions of illegal immigrants, disgruntled Latino activists are ratcheting up their radical anti-enforcement rhetoric. Illinois Democratic Rep. Luis Gutierrez -- a persistent critic on Obama's left flank -- lambasted federal workplace enforcement raids this weekend. On Sunday, he repeated his hyperbolic attacks on homeland security agents "terrorizing" neighborhoods and ripping babies from the breasts of nursing moms. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano made no public effort to defend her employees.

On campuses across the country, unhappy ethnic college student groups have turned up the heat on Democrats to resurrect the "DREAM Act" nightmare for the 12th time in a decade. The legislation -- persistently rejected by a bipartisan majority on Capitol Hill -- would provide illegal aliens (not just teenagers, but students up to age 35) federal education access and benefits, plus a conditional pass from deportation and a special path toward green cards and U.S. citizenship for themselves and unlimited relatives.

Obama argues that his comprehensive amnesty plan would boost America's bottom line. But the open-borders math doesn't add up. The Congressional Budget Office score of the last DREAM Act package estimates that "the bill would increase projected deficits by more than $5 billion in at least one of the four consecutive 10-year periods starting in 2021." And that doesn't include the costs of the unlimited family members the millions of DREAM Act beneficiaries would be able to bring to the U.S. A separate cost analysis by the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Immigration Studies concluded that the illegal alien DREAM Act bailout would cost taxpayers $6.2 billion a year and "crowd out" U.S. students in the classroom.

To help gloss over those sobering realities and blur the lines between legal and illegal immigration, Obama summoned Latino celebrities such as actresses Eva Longoria and Rosario Dawson. The starlets -- deemed important "stakeholders" in the immigration policy debate by the celebrity in chief -- have served as glamorous distractions from the vocal complaints of Southwest governors, ranchers, farmers and other victims of continued border chaos. These are the real stakeholders whose lives and livelihoods are at risk. But none had a seat at the Hollywood-filled table.

While proudly emphasizing her ethnic loyalties, Dawson (an outspoken critic of Arizona's immigration enforcement law) insists immigration reform "isn't just a Mexican" or Latino issue. But for more candid liberal strategists, the illegal alien amnesty bandwagon is nothing more than a tool to motivate current and future Latinos to protect the Democrats' grip on power. Eliseo Medina, secretary treasurer of Obama's deep-pocketed backers at the Service Employees International Union, laid out the stakes in an interview with MSNBC:

"Clearly with immigration reform and any other kind of reform that would benefit the Latino community, we have to make sure that our voices are heard in the ballot box. There are approximately 23 million Latinos that are eligible to vote, yet only 10 million voted in 2008."

SEIU's goal: "If we increase the turnout from 10 million to anywhere between 12 and 15 million, we're going to have an outsized impact on the election in 2012."

If, as widely expected, Obama fails to deliver amnesty through the legislative process, there's always amnesty by executive fiat. White House insiders first floated the idea in June 2010 to unilaterally extend either deferred action or parole to millions of illegal aliens in the United States. This administration has accomplished its major policy agenda items through force, fiat and fraud. Immigration will be no different.

Unfortunately for the law-abiding, there is no Hollywood-Washington-Big Labor lobby to speak for them. While Obama's homeland security officials hang their "mission accomplished" banner over the border, the feds have barely made a dent in the three-year naturalization application backlog or the 400,000-deportation fugitive problem.

Meanwhile, law enforcement witnesses told a House subcommittee last month that border smuggling has grown so out of control that federal prosecutors are simply declining to pursue cases. Cochise County, Arizona, Sheriff Larry Dever testified about the feds' so-called "Turn Back South" policy -- which includes lowering thresholds for drug and smuggling prosecutions, and permitting border-crossers at least seven strikes before being charged with immigration misdemeanors. And just last week, the General Accounting Office reported another massive 1.6 million illegal visa overstayers backlog -- a problem exposed by five of the 19 September 11 hijackers who benefited from systemic failure to enforce visa regulations.

So much for "never forget."

To read another article by Michelle Malkin, click here.

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