The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was not consulted nor were its analysts used to compile a Trump administration report on terrorism that claims to have come from the DHS, said Spencer Ackerman at The Daily Beast on Sunday.
The administration report claimed that three quarters of “international terrorism” convictions involve immigrants to the United States and was sent out to the media as a bolster to President Donald Trump’s ban on Muslims entering the country.
“An analysis conducted by DHS determined that approximately 73 percent (402 of these 549 individuals) were foreign-born,” said the report.
The trouble is, Ackerman wrote, “the Department of Homeland Security did not perform that analysis. DHS’ analysts did not contribute to the highly controversial report.”
Rather than relying on DHS Secretary Kristjen Nielsen to compile the figures for the report, Attorney Gen. Jeff Sessions — a former Alabama senator and immigration hard-liner — compiled the report and only allowed Nielsen to have input when it was nearly complete.
“The Trump administration is trying to turn counterterrorism into an immigration issue,” said terrorism expert Charles Kurzman to The Daily Beast.
“Career professional analysts at DHS communicated to the Justice Department that the data sought for the report simply did not exist within their department,” said Ackerman. “DHS, multiple sources said, does not track or correlate international terrorism data by citizenship or country of origin, and have warned the Trump administration that doing so risks a misleading portrait of both terrorism and immigration.”
DHS was essentially frozen out of the project, sources said, and the report was presented by a Justice Department spokesman without an accompanying official from DHS.