**Posted by Phineas
It’s been noted before by myself and others that our porous southern border poses not only a problem of illegal immigration, but an avenue of opportunity for terrorists trying to get into the United States. Hamas has been trying to set up operations in Mexico, Hizbullah has become involved in the Colombian drug trade, and an Iranian book celebrating suicide bombers was found in the Arizona desert, probably not dropped by a Mexican looking for day-work in Phoenix.
Now comes word via a Brazilian periodical that al Qaeda operatives are in Brazil, plotting and organizing:
Al Qaeda operatives are in Brazil planning attacks, raising money and recruiting followers, a leading news magazine reported Saturday, renewing concerns about the nation serving as a hide-out for Islamic militants.
Veja magazine, in its online edition, reported that at least 20 people affiliated with al Qaeda as well as the Lebanese Shi’ite Muslim group Hezbollah, the Palestinian group Hamas and two other organizations have been hiding out in the South American country.
The magazine said these operatives have been raising money and working to incite attacks abroad. The magazine cited Brazilian police and U.S. government reports, but did not give details on specific targets or operations.
This isn’t the first word we’ve had of Islamic jihadists in South America, of course. As the article mentions, the United States has long believed that the lawless area where the Brazilian, Paraguayan, and Argentine borders meet harbored terrorists and Iranian agents. But this latest news from Brazil is a salutary reminder that our enemies are not just in the Hindu Kush: they are much closer, they are making plans, and we are a very likely target. (Though not the only one…)
via Fausta, who provides links to articles about the activities of Hamas and Hizbullah in the land of the samba, too.
(Crossposted at Public Secrets)