Tag Archives: Mike Rogers

'One plane ticket away'

U.S. House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers made what he presumed to be a profound point about the threat posed by Islamic extremists in Syria and Iraq.

ISIS is “one plane ticket away” from striking the United States of America, Rogers said on Meet the Press this past Sunday.

I heard him say that and wondered: That’s news … now?

I get that Rogers is seeking to underscore the threat that ISIS poses. These are truly evil men who, it’s been said by Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Martin Dempsey, have an “apocalyptic, end-of-the-world” view.

The hard truth, though, is that all terror groups are “one plane ticket away” from entering the United States and doing terrible harm against Americans.

They were one ticket away on Sept. 11, 2001, yes? Nineteen terrorists boarded three commercial aircraft that day in the eastern United States, hijacked them and flew two of them into buildings in New York and Washington, D.C.; the third jet crashed into that Pennsylvania field after passengers fought heroically with the hijackers to keep them from crashing it into another target. 

I also believe we’ve done better at protecting the United States since that horrific day. The measures imposed during the Bush administration have made commercial air travel less fun for passengers around the world, but it has made it demonstrably safer.

The same can be said now, despite the critics’ claim that the Obama administration is doing too little to protect U.S. citizens against terrorist threat. To that I ask: We’ve had how many attacks on our shores since 9/11?

Yes, ISIS and other despicable terrorists are “one plane ticket away” from committing mayhem here. That’s as it’s always been and likely always will be.

The question remains: Are we going to remain vigilant and alert?


Obama might be able to fix border crisis

What? You mean the president of the United States has the executive authority to tinker with an immigration law and can start sending some of the children back to their home countries?

And he can do it without fighting with Congress?

Do it, Mr. President.


Two key lawmakers, one Republican and one Democrat, think President Obama has it within his power to act. Republican House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers said the president needs to “re-engage” this effort. “We can safely get them home,” Rogers said on “Meet the Press.” He said, “And that’s where the president needs to start. So he needs to re-engage, get folks who are doing administrative work on the border. They need to make sure they send a very clear signal.”

But would he get sued for acting on his own? Let’s hope not. Congressional critics have been complaining that the president hasn’t acted forcefully enough on a whole host of issues, the immigration crisis being the latest. The children and young adults are political refugees from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras. Sending them back willy nilly could expose them to mortal danger.

A 2008 law signed by President Bush was implemented to help prevent human trafficking. It supposedly makes it more difficult to send children back when they’ve entered the country illegally. As they say, no good deed goes unpunished. Smugglers have taken that 2008 and sent these young people here to take advantage of that law. And for that the president has been pounded?

Democratic Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein said the law allows for administration action in the event of “exceptional circumstances.” She should know; Feinstein helped write the 2008 legislation.

If the president is facing a protracted fight with Congress over the emergency spending bill he has requested, then he should just take the action he has authority to take.