Why Obama's New Cuba Flights Pose Security Concerns

Thursday, May 19, 2016
This week, the House Committee on Homeland Security chaired a hearing on the security risks stemming from the Obama Administration's proposed commercial flights to Cuba.

The hearing revealed some troubling issues.

In private, Transportation Security Administration ("TSA") officials have been raising serious of concerns with lawmakers.

Yet, since the hearing was called, the Obama Administration has been stonewalling the entire process.

Moreover, under political pressure, TSA officials skirted most questions at the hearing.

As Homeland Security Subcommittee Chair, U.S. Rep. John Katko (R-NY) noted, "This leads me to believe that the administration is either hiding something, or worse, simply negligent of the security concerns associated with this policy."

And there's plenty of reason to be concerned.

For example, a 2014 report from the Center for a Secure Free Society revealed how Venezuelan authorities provided at least 173 passports, visas and other documentation to Islamist extremists seeking to slip unnoticed into North America.

As the report warns, and has recently been confirmed the Panama Paper leaks, Venezuela's passport and national ID systems are completely controlled by Cuba's regime.

Adding further concern, The Washington Post recently reported how, "over the past two months, travel agents in Kabul have been surprised by Afghans showing up at their offices with Cuban visas, which are suspected of having been issued in Iran or acquired on the black market."

Meanwhile, U.S. authorities will have no independent security verification on the ground in Cuba's airports to screen travelers.

Instead, the Obama Administration plans to outsource and fully entrust the security of the U.S. to the Castro regime.

As Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX) stressed, this isn't for five flights per week -- as is the case of Cairo's airport, which is leaps-and-bounds better suited than Havana's. But for 110 flights per day -- as the Obama Administration intends for Cuba.

Obama is clearly more interested in his legacy than ensuring our security.