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‘For the Record’: How the Southern Border Could Leave the Whole Country Vulnerable

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In the wake of the Islamic State attacks that killed 129 people in Paris, there are renewed concerns about America’s vulnerability to a similar strike.

More than 30 governors have opposed allowing Syrian migrants to settle in the U.S. over concerns that militants could hide among the refugees. However, America’s porous Southern border might allow those jihadists to enter the country undetected.

Violence and corruption linked to drug cartels has spilled over the border in recent years, and as law enforcement told For the Record, if the cartels can move drugs across the border, smuggling people or weapons is easy.

Chris Cabrera, a Border Patrol agent and union representative, estimates that agents catch only 35-40 percent of illegal immigrants and an even lower percentage of drug smugglers.

“We play a goal-line defense,” said Cabrera. “People can come in and get past the front line and walk around the checkpoint and they’re home free. They can go wherever they want, do whatever they want, and stay under the radar and they’re good to go."

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