• Analysis: Adding a citizenship question to the census could screw over Texas

    A census question on citizenship could undercount populations in states with large numbers of poor and/or Hispanic residents — states like Texas. And an undercount would cut into the state’s representation, and its federal services.

  • MS-13 is a street gang, not a drug cartel – and the difference matters

    I spent three years at American University’s Center for Latin American and Latino Studies chronicling the MS-13’s criminal exploits for the National Institute of Justice. Our study proves that MS-13 is neither a drug cartel nor was it born of illegal immigration. That misconception is fueling failed U.S. policies that, in my assessment, will do little to deter MS-13.

  • Addressing climate migration within borders helps countries plan, mitigate effects

    Migration in response to climate change is a big topic in the media. But the focus is all too often on either international cross-boundary movements or short-term population displacement from major floods or droughts. While these forms of population movement are important, they are by no means the whole story. A new report is the first to focus on longer-term climate impacts on crop and water resources and the ways in which they may influence internal migration.

  • Appellate court issues encouraging border search opinion

    The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in U.S. v. Molina-Isidoro recently issued an encouraging opinion related to the digital privacy of travelers crossing the U.S. border. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) filed an amicus brief last year in the case, arguing that the Supreme Court’s decision in Riley v. California (2014) supports the conclusion that border agents need a probable cause warrant before searching electronic devices because of the unprecedented and significant privacy interests travelers have in their digital data. In Riley, the Supreme Court followed similar reasoning and held that police must obtain a warrant to search the cell phone of an arrestee.

  • Using artificial intelligence to predict criminal aircraft

    The ability to forecast criminal activity has been explored to various lengths in science fiction, but does it hold true in reality? It could for U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). ) DHS S&T is developing a Predictive Threat Model (PTM) to help CBP’s Air and Marine Operations Center (AMOC) more quickly and efficiently identify and stop nefarious aircraft.

  • Federal judge rules White House can continue building border wall

    U.S. District Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who the president once asserted could not be fair to Trump because of Curiel’s Mexican heritage, has ruled in favor of the White House in a lawsuit over construction of a border wall.

  • Supreme Court declines to enter DACA fray

    The Supreme Court announced today (Monday) that it will not, at least for now, enter the legal fight over the Trump administration’s cancellation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. The court’s decision to allow the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit to resolve the legal challenges to the administration’s plan  means the administration cannot proceed with its plan to end the DACA program until the end of a few more months of appeals, that is, past the 5 March deadline the administration had set to for the 800,000 “Dreamers” who arrived in the country illegally as children.

  • Trump's travel ban “unconstitutionally tainted with animus toward Islam”: Court

    The 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Virginia, on Thursday described the latest version of Donald Trump’s travel ban as “unconstitutionally tainted with animus toward Islam.” In a 9-4 vote, the federal appeals court said the ban on travelers from six predominantly Muslim countries is unconstitutional because it discriminates against people based on their religion. In its ruling, the 4th Circuit said the presidential proclamation imposing the ban has a “much broader deleterious effect” than banning certain foreign nationals. The ban, the court said, “denies the possibility of a complete, intact family to tens of thousands of Americans.” “On a fundamental level, the Proclamation second-guesses our nation’s dedication to religious freedom and tolerance,” Chief Justice Roger Gregory wrote for the court in the majority opinion.

  • ISIS fighters on migrant boats a “real risk”: Italy

    Mediterranean migrant boats headed for Europe could be carrying fugitive ISIS fighters, Italian Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano has asserted at a Rome conference, where he has been hosting African, EU, and UN officials. “It is in our interests, to defeat the business model of traffickers whose profits are used to finance organized crime and, we have the evidence for this, terrorism,” Alfano said. Analysts note that as a result of increased operations by the EU’s border agency, Frontex, in the central Mediterranean, migration pressure has shifted west to Algeria and Morocco as migrants, still intent on reaching Europe, head for Spain, some via its African outposts of Ceuta and Melilla.

  • Debunking 3 myths behind “chain migration” and “low-skilled” immigrants

    President Donald Trump has embraced the rhetoric of “chain migration” to spread the message that the United States is legally letting in too many of the wrong kind of immigrant. That term, however, distorts the facts. As a scholar on U.S. immigration law and policy, I’d like to correct and contextualize the numbers on the now maligned “family-based immigration,” and uncover the biases that underlie the preference for the “highly-skilled” immigrant. Family immigration is subject to significant limitations and it exists because American values include ideals such as family unification.

  • Border security improvements boost West Bank-Jordan trade

    The West Bank and Israel could double trade with Jordan after new security measures were opened at the Allenby border crossing. The new system for scanning cargo containers will enable 200 containers to cross between Jordan and the West Bank each day, double the current number.

  • Smuggling of people from Africa to Europe conducted by “independent traders,” not Mafia-like monopoly

    First study to model the organization behind trade in illegal border crossings shows no “Mafia-like” monopoly of routes from Africa into Europe via Mediterranean. Instead, myriad independent smugglers compete in open markets that have emerged at every stage of the journey.

  • Texas smugglers say Trump's border wall wouldn't stop immigrants, drugs from pouring across the border

    If the Trump administration follows through on the president’s promises to build a border wall, would it actually stop undocumented immigrants and illegal drugs? Two former smugglers explain how they’d work around it.

  • New algorithm to help resettle refugees, improve their integration

    In recent years, a record number of people have been displaced as a result of war, persecution, and other human rights violations, surpassing the numbers seen after the Second World War. In 2016 alone, about 65.6 million people were forced to flee their homes. Researchers have developed a new machine learning algorithm which could help governments and resettlement agencies find the best places for refugees to relocate, depending on their particular skills and backgrounds.

  • Administration waives more than 30 environmental laws for New Mexico section of border wall

    The Trump administration on Monday waived more than thirty environmental laws to speed construction of twenty miles of border wall in eastern New Mexico, the third time the waiver has been used by the Trump administration. The waiver is meant to allow construction of the New Mexico border wall section without having to comply with laws that protect clean air, clean water, public lands, or endangered wildlife.