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October 23, 2021
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Panama Apprehends Dozens Linked To
Al Qaeda Headed To The U.S.

October 23, 2021
What You Need To Know

The government of Panama reports they've apprehended 52 people linked to Al Qaeda who were headed for the U.S. southern border. This, according to Rep. Tony Gonzalez of Texas during an interview with Republican Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel on the GOP’s Real America podcast.

Rep Gonzalez spoke about the security risks associated with mass migration across the U.S. southern border. Gonzalez said Panamanian Foreign Minister Erica Mouynes warned that a caravan of approximately 100,000 migrants was heading for the U.S. southern border and told him the Panamanian government had already apprehended 52 people on the U.S. terrorist watch list from that group.

Quoting Rep. Gonzales:

“I asked her one specific question: ‘have you caught anybody on the terrorist watch list?'” Gonzalez continued. “She goes, ‘Funny you ask that, Tony, because in Panama we do biometrics and we have apprehended 52 people that are associated with Al Qaeda.'”

When asked if she had reported this information to the Biden administration, Mouynes reportedly told Gonzalez, “There’s no one home. I’m here talking to you because the administration is absent.”

Concerns about terror threats crossing into the U.S. through the southern border are not new. In January of 2019, the Department of Homeland Security warned that they are apprehending, on average, 10 individuals on the terrorist watchlist PER DAY from traveling to or entering the United States. While many of these individuals were attempting to enter by air, a large number are also encountered along the border. In 2018 alone, DHS reports encounters with more than 3,000 “special interest aliens” — individuals with suspicious travel patterns who may pose a national security risk — along with many criminals, smugglers, traffickers, and other threat actors who try to exploit our borders.

In April of this year, AlertsUSA subscribers were informed of the arrest of two Yemeni men on US/MX border who are listed on FBI’s Terrorism Watch List & No-Fly list.

Note that it is normally very rare for someone encountered by a Border Patrol agent or a customs officer to be found in the Terrorist Screening Database (TSDB). According to the FBI, those in the database are "known to be or reasonably suspected of being involved in terrorist activities."

In related news, this week the Washington Post reported that U.S. authorities have detained more than 1.7 million migrants along the Mexico border during the 2021 fiscal year that ended in September, and arrests by the Border Patrol soared to the highest levels ever recorded. This according to unpublished Customs and Border Protection data obtained leaked to the paper.

AlertsUSA continues to monitor the domestic and international threat environment around the clock and will immediately notify service subscribers, via SMS messages to their mobile devices, of new alerts, warnings and advisories or any developments which signal a change the overall threat picture for American citizens as events warrant.


10/20 - Manhunt underway across France in search of suspect who beheaded and eviscerated an elderly man in Bollène. Local police urge vigilance. AlertsUSA Monitoring..

10/20 - Naval Support Activity Bethesda: Bomb threat to BLDG 10 + active shooter threat being investigated. All Gates closed to non-emerg traffic. Monitoring..

10/19 - MD87 aircraft with 21 aboard overshoots runway and crashes near Houston Executive Airport in Brookshire, TX. Only minor injuries reported. Monitoring..

10/17 - AlertsUSA monitoring response to reports of gunfire, Park City Mall, Lancaster, PA. Injuries reported. Heavy police presence. Avoid the area.

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Colorized scanning electron micrograph of chronically infected and partially lysed cells (green) infected with a variant strain of SARS-CoV-2 virus particles (blue), isolated from a patient sample. Image captured at the NIAID Integrated Research Facility (IRF) in Fort Detrick, Maryland. Credit: NIAID - ALLOW IMAGES

Coronavirus Quick Hits

October 23, 2021


According to data provided by the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center, as of Friday evening there have been more than 733,000 total deaths in the U.S. attributed to the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

For the fourth straight week, states with INcreasing COVID-19 hospitalizations are almost entirely in the northern parts of the country. States with DEcreasing COVID-19 hospitalizations are almost entirely in the south, to include Texas and Florida.

This week CDC director Rochelle Walensky stated they "may need to update the definition of 'fully vaccinated' in the future” and continued to push booster shots for all.


Last week Public Health Agency of Canada reports that the virus's reproductive number (Rt) had fallen below one for the first time since mid-July, putting new COVID infections on a downward trajectory for the first time in months.

Canada has opened up its borders to fully vaccinated foreign travelers.

Canada has quietly lifted it's blanket travel advisory related to COVID-19.


Brazil remains the Latin American country most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. As of October 18, 2021, the country had reported over 21.6 million cases. It was followed by Argentina, with more than 5.2 million confirmed cases of COVID-19.


Russia still leads the European region in COVID-related deaths, followed by Ukraine and Romania. Croatia reports highest number of new infections since December. In Italy, the average number of new infections reported increasing for 7 days


DHS announced the lifting of travel restrictions on international air and land border crossings for fully vaccinated travelers beginning Nov 8th.

There is still no word from DHS on testing and vaccination requirements for illegals encountered at the border or in the interior.


Surgeon General: Don’t kiss the UNvaccinated…
Florida Surgeon General — Sorry folks, masks don’t work…
COVID-19 hospitalizations going up in the North, down in the South
DoD spells out penalties for civilian employees who refuse vax
NIH admits funding gain-of-function COVID experiments
Biden vaccine mandate isn't in effect, isn't enforceable, Republican AGs argue
Pentagon squares off with congressional republicans over vaccine mandate
Russia identifies new coronavirus variant as Moscow tightens restrictions
Putin approves non-working week to stem virus spread
Japan and South Korea never did full lockdowns
China's COVID-19 outbreak grows as cities race to trace infections
COVID: WHO warns pandemic will drag on deep into 2022
India has administered its billionth COVID-19 vaccine dose
Latvia is first to reimpose lockdown in Europe’s new COVID wave


Why doesn’t natural immunity count in the US?
Menstrual changes after COVID-19 vaccination

World Health Organization
Centers for Disease Control (U.S.)
Johns Hopkins CSSE (Interactive map)


According to the CDC's COVID Data Tracker website, more than 411 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccines have been administered within the U.S..


According to the CDC's Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS) between mid-December 2020 and Oct 15 of this year, more than 818,000 adverse events have been reported following COVID19 vaccinations. As it is estimated that only 1% of adverse events are recorded into the system, these numbers could be significantly higher.

Reports of adverse events to VAERS following vaccination, including deaths, do not necessarily mean that a vaccine caused a health problem.

Current VAERS reports (U.S. only) related to COVID-19 vaccines include:

Deaths: 7,848
Hospitalizations: 37,015
Urgent Care: 77,085
Anaphylaxis: 2,011
Bell's Palsy: 2,645
Miscarriages: 1,724
Heart Attacks: 4,017
Myo/Pericarditis: 3,473

A B-2 Spirit bomber deployed from Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, flies near Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, during an interoperability training mission Jan. 15, 2019. The aircraft are flying in support of a U.S. Strategic Command Bomber Task Force mission. U.S. Strategic Command’s Bomber Forces regularly conduct combined theater security cooperation engagements with allies and partners, demonstrating the U.S. capability to command, control and conduct bomber missions across the globe. (U.S. Air Force photo)  - ALLOW IMAGES

Commentary / Analysis / Research

October 23, 2021

2022 Index of U.S. Military Strength

The U.S. military is only “marginally” able to defend the country’s national interests at home and abroad, the conservative Heritage Foundation’s 2022 Index of U.S. Military Strength found.

The more than 600-page index, released on Tuesday night, concludes that the U.S. military is “likely capable” of meeting the demands of a single major regional conflict though it “certainly would be ill-equipped to handle two nearly simultaneous” major regional conflicts.


'War is Real': Defend Taiwan or Give It the Bomb

There has in recent months been a dangerous erosion in deterrence. U.S. President Joe Biden can reestablish deterrence by offering Taiwan a mutual defense treaty. If he does not want to do that, he should either base American nuclear weapons in Taiwan or transfer such weapons to the island so it can defend itself.


Nat'l Guard Now Arresting Illegals on the US/MX Border

In a dive into new political and legal water, Texas Governor Greg Abbott has initiated the first-ever border security operations in which thousands of National Guard troops — newly imbued with civilian arrest authority and given 40 hours of traditional police training in the use of deadly force — have started handcuffing illegally entering migrants on state trespassing charges.


Fleet and Marine Tracker Map as of Oct 18, 2021  - ALLOW IMAGES
USNI Fleet and Marine Tracker
October 23, 2021

These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of Oct 18, 2021 based on U.S. Navy, public data provided by the U.S. Naval Institute, and open source reporting. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the chart reflects the location of the capital ship.

An unarmed Trident II D5LE missile launches from the USS Wyoming in the Atlantic Ocean, Sept. 17, 2021.
World News Roundup
October 23, 2021


Biden Afghan refugee charged with raping teenager in Montana
Afghan refugees wilding, DoD sends in “gender and protection advisors”
Afghan refugee rapes two children in Fort McCoy bathroom
Biden says US has ‘commitment’ to defend Taiwan if China attacks
U.S. military is preparing for a ‘space superhighway,’ complete with pit stops
Rocket failure delays US hypersonic glide missile test in Alaska
Military conducts tests to further hypersonic missile development
US military only ‘marginally able’ to meet needs, think tank argues
Ex-CIA Director Haspel joins law firm to advise super-rich on risks
Navy: Sailors didn't know what to do in USS Bonhomme Richard fire
Facebook says users can share advice on immigrant smuggling
Five Russian jets buzz Alaska airspace amid tension spike
U.S. warns of efforts by China to collect genetic data
US intel warns China could dominate advanced technologies


Putin: Ukraine's Western-Backed Military Development A Threat To Russia
US opens door to Ukraine joining NATO military bloc, Putin fumes
UK palace says queen, 95, spent night in hospital for checks
NATO Chief: Relations with Russia at lowest point since cold war
Taliban agree to work with Russia, China and Iran on regional security
Brits charge 25-year-old man of Somali heritage with MP’s murder
Russia scrambles fighter jets to head off American warplanes
Police arrest man at airport over Manchester Arena bombing
ISIS jihadi in Afghanistan sues to return to UK, says he’s afraid of the Taliban


Mossad’s new boss is a gadget-loving killing machine
Violence accelerates Lebanon’s descent into state failure
Attack hits Syria base that houses US troops; no US injuries
Russia and Iran to hold military cooperation meeting in Tehran
Commander of Iran’s IRGC rejoices at US ‘defeats’
Ethiopia: New airstrike hits Tigray's capital
Turkish President Erdogan threatens to expel 10 western ambassadors
IDF said to resume practicing potential strike on Iran nuclear sites


China's take-over in America's back yard
U.S. China ambassador nominee takes tough line on dealings with Beijing
China threatens European Union over vote in support of Taiwan
China’s military tests nurses in nighttime island landing simulation
Armada of 10 Chinese and Russian warships is sailing around Japan
Revealed: China 'has tested TWO fractional orbital hypersonic missiles
Xi Jinping still refuses to leave China, even for COP26
N. Korea test-fires two 'submarine-launched ballistic missiles'
S. Korea tests its first domestically produced space rocket
How does China’s defense spending really stack up against the US?
Taliban give money reward, pledge land to suicide bombers’ families

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Travel Security Resources

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The U.S. Dept. of State Travel Website is the authoritative federal source for information on the security situation at travel destinations worldwide. With tensions rapidly increasing in most regions, readers planning international travel, even to such common destinations as Canada, Mexico or the Caribbean Islands, are strongly encouraged to research on the security situation at your destination prior to departure.

Active USGOV Travel Notices
Worldwide Caution

Active USGOV Travel Advisories
Alphabetical Country List
Dynamic Map

Other USGOV Travel Resources
Traveler's Checklist
Smart Traveler Enrollment Prog (STEP)
Travelers with Special Considerations
Travel to High-Risk Areas
Faith-Based Travel Information
Information for Women Travelers
Cruise Ship Passengers
Students Abroad
Your Health Abroad
Driving and Road Safety Abroad

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The Department of State’s Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) provides a variety of resources to enhance the safety and security of the U.S. private sector businesses and organizations operating abroad.


The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website is the authoritative federal source for information on current health issues related to specific destinations worldwide. These issues may arise from disease outbreaks, special events or gatherings, natural disasters, or other conditions that may affect travelers’ health.

Foreign Sources of Travel Guidance

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