It found that the “Southwest border has now become the greatest threat of terrorist infiltration into the United States.” It specifically cites a “growing influence” from Iranian and Hezbollah terror forces in Latin America.
“The presence of Hezbollah in Latin America is partially explained by the large Lebanese diaspora in South America,” the report reads. “In general, Hezbollah enjoys support by many in the Lebanese world community in part because of the numerous social programs it provides in Lebanon that include schools, hospitals, utilities and welfare.”
... McCaul’s report goes on to argue Iran’s increased presence in Latin America is because of the nation’s close relationship with Venezuela - which recently re-elected socialist leader Hugo Chavez.
The report found that Hezbollah’s “relationship with Mexican drug cartels,” has been “documented as early as 2005.”
Quoting former Drug Enforcement Administration executive Michael Braun, the report argues these ties are troubling. “Operatives from FTOs (foreign terrorist organizations) and DTOs (drug trafficking organizations) are frequenting the same shady bars, the same seedy hotels and the same sweaty brothels in a growing number of areas around the world,” Braun said in a statement quoted in the report. “And what else are they doing? Based upon over 37 years in the law enforcement and security sectors, you can mark my word that they are most assuredly talking business and sharing lessons learned.”