It’s Friday and time for our weekly shoot-the-shit topic. The Syrian refugee process is an important issue to voters and both political parties. Unfortunately you can’t count on the mainstream media to provide you with the details, so we will. None of the information that follows is “official” it’s based on our meetings with representatives of INTERPOL, DHS and FBI. Our hope is that the information presented here will help you make informed decisions. During our fact gathering references were made to the successes of the Canadian system, which we will touch on below. As with all shoot-the-shit topics, readers are free to make any unsupported comments, use uncensored profanity, insult anyone you wish or change the subject altogether. So let’s get started.
The Syrian refugee process follows a FIFO rule. FIFO stands for “First In Frist Out” so who ever has been in a camp the longest amount of time will be allowed to apply for resettlement first. The Canadian government does not accept military age males and they won’t accept fractions of a family (if I understood the explanation properly) . It was clear from talking with both INTERPOL and the FBI that there is no international standard for processing refugees wishing to relocate. In addition to the lack of a standard, identity proofing is questionable. Our INTERPOL representative did mention that most of the refugees, presently in camps, have documents; however, authenticating these documents is an area of concern and much of present day vetting is behavioral. Behavioral vetting involves an analysis of the applicant’s behavior while in the camps along with interviews with any individual or individuals who may have known the applicant while in Syria.
One of several potential infiltration mechanisms is claiming family affiliation. It works in the following way…
I’m going to tell the camp officials that I am your brother. If you betray me, we will kill your family in Aleppo.
This claim can be validated only through DNA testing and as of this writing it appears that no one is collecting and processing DNA. In fact, the only biometric modalities being collected are finger prints and facial. There is some discussion of deploying rapid DNA technology, which is capable of processing DNA in 90 minutes as opposed to days but that has yet to be done, possibly due to cost. There were two other infiltration techniques discussed with us but out of an abundance of caution we will not disclose that information here.
The comments you’re hearing from pro-refugee pundits that refugees undergo 2 years of vetting is a half-truth. The refugees, on average, spend 2 years in a camp during which time they could be observed. Furthermore, other than a visual inspection of official identity documents, there is no reliable identity proofing. It is therefore possible for infiltrators, holding identity documents that pass inspection, to then provide biometric data and enter a country legally with a new identity. It’s unlikely these individuals will jump on a HUMVEE with an AK47 and attack a domestic target. However, the more likely scenario is that the individual or individuals become operational and using the host country’s privacy and civil liberties protections conduct radicalization operations, conduct training and/or provided command and control for kinetic action against the host country.
It was interesting to note that all of the individuals we spoke to said the overwhelming majority of these refugees want to return to Syria.
We look forward to your comments. Have a great weekend and be safe in whatever you’re doing!