This past March, Bureau of Prisons Inmate No. 9627173 – Plano, Texas wife and mother Sumaiya Ali – asked a federal judge for early release from her terrorism sentence under the First Step Act. It is the first such case that I know of, but if this has occurred once, more are likely in a pipeline emptying out potential terror recidivists into the nation. This law was hastily passed and needs to be … [Read more...] about First Known Convicted Terrorist Asked For ‘First Step Act’ Early Prison Release. Have More Followed?
Terrorism & Homeland Security
After the El Paso massacre, a narrative is emerging that America has fought Islamic extremism too hard, leaving white supremacists to flower. The Democrat narrative that President Trump suppressed national investigative efforts that would hurt his friends and supporters in the white supremacy movement is flat-out false. By Todd Bensman as originally published August 6, 2019 in The … [Read more...] about After the El Paso massacre: Did America fight Islamic extremism too hard?
A consequential legal battle is underway with potential to decide whether tough post-9/11 sentencing laws will remain in place. Those who join and aid jihadist terror groups like ISIS, and (believe it or not) their supporters, hope against hope for as little consequence as possible when terrorists get caught. Homeland security leaders, federal prosecutors, and perhaps most Members of Congress … [Read more...] about Tough Post-9/11 Terrorism Sentencing Laws Under Assault
I testified before the House Oversight and Reform Committee about my experience combating domestic extremism while working for the Texas Department of Public Safety. The testimony took place Tuesday, June 4, 2019 in the Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, D.C. The topic of testimony for two panels (mine was the second) was "White Supremacy, Adequacy of the Federal … [Read more...] about Bensman Testifies before Congress on Law Enforcement’s Fight Against White Supremacy and Domestic Terrorism
Convicted terrorist John Walker Lindh was released from prison a week ago. What's the government doing to make sure former terrorists don't reoffend? Answer: pretty much nothing. America is at the mercy of released former (or formerly incarcerated, at least) terrorists. By Todd Bensman as originally published in The Federalist on May 30, 2019 The May 23 release from federal prison of John … [Read more...] about How to Make Sure Many Other Terrorists Like John Walker Lindh Pose No Threat After Release
The Post and Times report that Hezbollah is suffering financial hardship these days. But left unsaid by is that Hezbollah achieved significant financial autonomy from Iran more than a decade ago. Starting in about 2006, it moved into Latin America and hit it very big in the international cocaine trafficking industry. Wobbly finances actually are nothing new to Hezbollah. It went to Latin America … [Read more...] about Why Iran’s Cash Crunch Hasn’t Disabled Hezbollah
The Sri Lanka attacks revealed a massive intelligence failure. Why should any of this matter to American homeland security leaders in the Donald Trump administration? Because change and turnover is afoot. And history shows how deceptively easy it is to slip into old habits, with time but also when rapid change is occurring. By Todd Bensman, originally published by Townhall on April 28, … [Read more...] about Could Sri Lanka’s Intelligence Failure Happen to a Distracted US Homeland Security Enterprise?
Houston-based National Security Division prosecutors appealed a light sentence against a convicted terrorist after Reagan-appointed District Judge Lynn Hughes scoffed at their arguments, expressed paternal sympathy for the convicted terrorist, and dismissed input from the dead victim’s bereaved mother (present in court) as “only her grief…sad but not cogent.” By Todd Bensman as originally … [Read more...] about A Federal Judge’s Bizarre Views of Justice for American ISIS Terrorist and the Bereaved Mother of His Victim
Were the brothers Arman and Omar Ali to come home to Plano right now from Syria's battlefields, they would find their ISIS-simpatico parents in federal custody and maybe even join them there. Fealty to the Islamist ideal has left the Ali family unit a ruin, its pretty $450,000 brick home empty, and 14-year-old little sister and daughter in enhanced teen angst with relatives in Houston. Meanwhile, … [Read more...] about All in the ISIS Family; How the Terror Group Destroyed a Suburban Texas Family
JUNE 16, 2016 BY TODD BENSMAN I enjoyed the honor of nominating Garland Police Department Officer Gregory Stevens for the Texas Department of Public Safety’s “Director’s Award,” the agency’s highest for non-DPS personnel, for his heroic actions of May 3, 2015 and then the satisfaction of witnessing his receipt of it to a crowded, standing ovation. It happened at DPS headquarters this … [Read more...] about The Hero Texas Cop Who Killed Two ISIS Terrorists Mid-Attack