Magazine article USA TODAY

Diseased Foreigners Streaming into U.S

Magazine article USA TODAY

Diseased Foreigners Streaming into U.S

Article excerpt

Border Patrol agents long have been at risk for violence from drug cartels and criminals, however, there is a new, insidious threat to agents, families, and communities from the crush of illegal immigrants. Our southern border has become a gateway for disease entry, maintains Elizabeth Lee Vliet, past director of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, Tucson, Ariz., who points out that BP agents have tested positive for tuberculosis (TB), H1N1 ("swine") flu, and chicken pox. Other diseases such as dengue and Ebola virus may be in this wave of immigrants, since people are coming from Central and South America, the Middle East, and West Africa. Dengue fever, including the hemorrhagic form, already is raging in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Ebola virus hemorrhagic fever is seriously out of control in several West African countries.

These diseases are highly contagious, especially in the crowded and poor sanitary conditions in detention and processing centers where thousands of immigrants are housed until sent to other areas of the U.S.--without full screening for such diseases, warns Vliet.

The extent of the threat appears to be unknown, or is being kept secret. "We do know that the Federal government advertised in January for 'escorts' for up to 65,000 unaccompanied minors, indicating this flood of illegals was orchestrated."

"CDC [the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Ga.] has not informed the Border Patrol which types of diseases have been diagnosed, or where any ill people have been taken," notes Zack Taylor, chairman of the National Association of Former Border Patrol Officers. "We have apprehended West African illegal immigrants in the Rio Grande Valley sector coming into the U.S. through Mexico in the last few years. Right now, we are only apprehending about three percent of the volume coming across our border, so the danger to the American people is that no one knows who is coming in, how many there are, where they are coming from, what they are carrying, and where they are going."

In fact, interjects Vliet, bus and plane loads of people are being transported quickly from the borders to cities and military bases around the country, risking the spread of disease further into America's heartland. Vliet stresses that the citizenry deserve answers to these questions:

* Why is the CDC--the U. …

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