Father McTeague interviews Bensman at length in February 2021. Listen to it here.
Bensman quote excerpt:
“We all know that the 911 hijackers did not cross any borders; they all got legal visas and went through legal processes. They used fraud. They gamed the systems. But they ultimately flew airport to airport, got a plane somewhere in Europe or the Middle East and ended up at an airport in New York or Boston or somewhere. And, those processes have been fairly policed since 9/11. Sewn up. They’re not perfect. People still get through. They still game those systems. But the net result is if you’re a terrorist organization or somebody who wants to commit terrorist acts in the west, the United States…you’re looking at those new processes thinking there’s a pretty high chance I’ll get caught. And we do catch them. We’ve got watch listing and databases and the manifestos on every airline are run through databases. There’s a chance you’re going to get caught. So there’s an adaptation that happens among criminals and criminal groups. When you find a hardened target you look for the softer way, and borders are that softer way. If you can sneak in, camouflaged with no identification, and you show up at Europe or the United States and say, ‘my name is Mickey Mouse,’ there’s a process that brings you in. You claim asylum and you’re sort of in. Most of the attackers in Europe were brought in as asylum claimants on false identity documents. Syrian papers, Syrian passports that were stolen or printed. At the US border, most people from those countries show up with no identification at all.”