Homeland Security Chair Mark Green: Southern and ‘cyber’ borders top focus for holding Biden, China to account
EXCLUSIVE: House Homeland Security Chairman Mark Green, R-Tenn., told Online News 72h Digital that securing America’s southern and “cyber” borders are top priorities for his committee, as well as holding China to account after the spy balloon incident.
Green sent a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas Tuesday, first obtained by Online News 72h Digital, in which he demanded information about China’s “espionage” in U.S. airspace.
In an interview ahead of President Biden’s State of the Union address Tuesday, Green said the issue with the spy balloon saga is “twofold.”
“One, how the [DHS] Office of Intelligence and Analysis, you know, functioned within all of the notifications and the decision making for not shooting down a spy balloon that invaded our, you know, airspace,” said Green.
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“And then, of course, we have oversight and have the Coast Guard inside Homeland Security. So they’re very involved right now in the recovery of the stuff and securing the site where the balloon was shot down and landed in the ocean. So just making sure they have the resources to do their job,” he said.
As for top priorities for his committee, Green said they are securing the southern border, as well as the country’s “cyber” border.
“A lot of people don’t think of cyber as a border. But I want to shift the paradigm a little bit and have people think of cybersecurity as the nation’s fourth border,” explained.
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Another top focus will be to “reorganize and restructure” DHS to maximize effectiveness and efficiency because it’s “unconscionable” what the Border Patrol have been put through due to demands on them by Biden’s open border policies.
Green wasn’t too enthusiastic about the possibility of impeaching Mayorkas, even though articles of impeachment have been put forward by some of his GOP colleagues. “My perspective right now is we’re going to do some significant oversight. And when we’re done, if the information that we gather shows that he’s worthy of being impeached, we’ll pass that off to [House Judiciary Chairman] Jim Jordan,” he said.
“The Pentagon acknowledged that they had been monitoring this surveillance balloon for several days, yet took no action to prevent it from entering U.S. airspace. Even worse, news reports indicate that the Biden administration knew about the spy balloon for more than a week before it was shot down. This inaction is both dangerous and egregious,” the chairman wrote in his letter to Mayorkas.
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He told Mayorkas that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)’s access to sensitive information as it traveled across the country is especially troubling as the CCP seeks to steal U.S. info and “exploit” academic and scientific communities.
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“The CCP’s espionage in our skies – left unaddressed by this administration – is a serious concern to Americans. As members of the Committee with jurisdiction over the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), we must understand DHS’ role in identifying, assessing, and tracking this threat,” the letter continued, including a deadline of Feb. 17 for the requested info.
DHS did not immediately respond to Online News 72h Digital’s request for comment on the letter.