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Florida Governor: Stop Funding Syrian Muslim Resettlement in the Sunshine State

Florida Governor Rick Scott requested a halt to federal funding of the scheduled resettlement of 425 Syrian Refugees in the Sunshine State.  This follows similar actions by Republican gubernatorial colleagues in Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts Michigan, and Texas.  He  sent a letter this afternoon to U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan, Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell and all members of the Florida U.S. Senate and Congressional delegation outlining his concerns.

states taking syrian migrants cnn

He adds his concerns regarding the ability of the Administration to vett Syrian refugees to prevent the possible infiltration of ISIS jihadis as occurred last weekend in Paris.  The Syrian passport of a suicide bomber or shahids (martyr) was found at the Paris soccer stadium a check of which revealed his entry into the EU via Greece in early October, 2015

In his letter to House Speaker Ryan and Senate Majority Leader McConnell, Governor Scott expressed his concerns:

Several organizations have requested that our state Department of Children and Families support the relocation of 425 possible Syrian refugees to Florida, as they receive federal funding to house these refugees in our state. Following the terrorist attacks by ISIS in Paris that killed over 120 people and wounded more than 350, and the news that at least one of the terror attack suspects gained access to France by posing as a Syrian refugee, our state agency will not support the requests we have received.

More importantly, however, it is our understanding that the state does not have the authority to prevent the federal government from funding the relocation of these Syrian refugees to Florida even without state  support. Therefore, we are asking the United States Congress to take immediate and aggressive action to prevent President Obama and his administration from using any federal tax dollars to fund the relocation of up to 425 Syrian refugees (the total possible number of refugees pending for state relocation support at this time) to Florida, or anywhere in the United States, without an extensive evaluation of the risk these individuals may pose to our nationalsecurity.

As the federal elected body that exercises oversight and authorizes federal spending, please take any action available through the powers of the United States Congress to prevent federal allocations toward the relocation of Syrian refugees without extensive examination into how this would affect our homeland security.

My office stands ready to provide any available information regarding this request for your immediate action.

RELATED ARTICLE: Do governors have any power when it comes to resettlement of third-worlders to their states?

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review.

VIDEO: Reporter buys forged Syrian Passport in Turkey — Cost $2,000

I chanced to watch a Fox and Friends interview with UK Daily Mail  Senior Reporter Nick Fagge who revealed how be bought forged Syrian documents in Southern Turkey for $2,000 in less than four days.  For Fagge this was a reprise of a mid-September interview onFox and Friends. It was prompted because of the Syrian passport found at the scene of a suicide bombing at the French soccer stadium last Friday. The passport purportedly belonged to an alleged Syrian refugee who entered the EU via Greece in early October 2015 as an alleged ISIS jihadi who infiltrated the refugee flood from Turkey. Fagge noted  that a German security expert who asked to inspect his documents said that the forged identity card and driver’s license were easy to detect because of errors. However, the German expert indicated that the Syrian Passport was an authentic one but clearly forged with Fagge’s  new identity.  This raised a question about the representations by  White House Deputy National Security Director, Ben Rhodes.  Speaking from the G20 summit in Antalya, Turkey,  he suggested  that  Syrian refugees admitted to this country were capable of being ‘thoroughly” vetted. Note this New York Post  report:

The Administration is going ahead with its plan to admit thousands of Syrian refugees into the US despite the horrific attack in Paris — where at least one of the attackers is believed to have posed as a Syrian migrant to get into the country.

“We’re still planning to take in Syrian refugees,” White House national Security Adviser Ben Rhodes told “Fox News Sunday.”

Rhodes, who is traveling with President Obama in Turkey, said there would be “very robust vetting” to “sort out that foreign fighter flow.”

Referring to refugees, he said: “They are tragic victims of this conflict. They are women and children and orphans of this war.”

Rhodes said the “careful” vetting would rely on input from “our intelligence community, our national Counterterrorism Center, the Department of Homeland Security, so we can make sure that we’re carefully screening anybody who comes to the United States.”

He made those statements on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

Rhodes’ representations  caused immediate pushback from  eight Republican governors about halting and funding of Syrian refugees admissions that were announced by President Obama.

We have also seen reported the Assad regime was  literally issuing millions of passports to promote the flight of Syrians abroad.  Clearly many of those  authentic passports have ended up in the hands of forgers and can be purchased by  ISIS operatives and families and even non-Syrians.

The Fox and Friends interview with Fagge noted:

Nick Fagge traveled to Turkey to meet with the forger, and paid him $2,000 for the documents.

Fagge reported in September:

The genuine documents were stolen from Syria when they were blank. The forger added our reporter’s picture and gave him the identity of a Syrian man from Aleppo killed last year.

[…]

The passport book MailOnline acquired is genuine, made from a batch seized from one of the many Syrian government offices captured by advancing opposition forces.

The forger explained that the militias fighting the forces of Assad make a beeline for government offices when they over-run a town. They know the value of the documents there and steal the passports, papers and even the printers that are used to create identity cards and driving licenses.

Fagge said today that it is “impossible to say” how many fake passports are floating around, adding that he doubts European border officials can put a figure on it either.

He said that the problem isn’t just Syrians coming to Europe, but also Europeans who travel to Syria, become radicalized, and then return to Europe.

Fagge said after his story was published, he met with a forgery expert from the German police force, who wanted to look at the documents he obtained.

The expert explained that it was tricky verifying documents presented by refugees from Syria.

“He said he found this very difficult because he couldn’t compare their documents with a real or a forged one,” said Fagge.

Fagge recalled that the expert could tell the driver’s license and ID card were forgeries, but said the passport looked “genuine.”

“He said, this is a real passport,” Fagge said.

Watch the Fox and Friends reprise interview with UK Daily Mail journalist Fagge

RELATED ARTICLES:

Syrian passports found at Paris jihad attacks scene were fakes made in Turkey

Obama calls idea of screening Syrian refugees based on religion ‘shameful,’ defends White House strategy

As governors decry migrants, Obama holds line

Lawmakers Demand Answers About Illegal Immigrant Gang Member Who Assaulted Police Officer

What Michelle Malkin Thinks Is Wrong With the Current H-1B Visa System

In first six weeks of FY2016 we resettled 827 Somalis; all but one are Muslim

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review.