Holding Foreign Visitors to Their Promises

Mark Krikorian, National Review, November 26, 2013

Yesterday’s heckler at Obama’s pro-amnesty speech in San Francisco was Ju Hong, an approved guest of the White House and an illegal alien from South Korea who recently graduated from UC Berkeley. People who still say illegal aliens “live in the shadows” obviously don’t know this guy: He’s on Twitter and LinkedIn, was a member of student government, has lobbied for taxpayer subsidies for illegal-alien students, and has been the subject of so much fawning news coverage he has his own topic page at the Cal student paper.

The salient fact here for immigration policy is that he came with his family on a tourist visa, and never left. Visa overstayers are believed to represent between a third and a half of the 12 million illegal aliens in the United States—and with improvements in border enforcement it’s possible the majority of new illegal aliens are overstayers. That translates to 4 to 6 million liars, people who swore they’d leave when their visit was over but didn’t, something at least as contemptible as sneaking into someone else’s country. Hong came as a child, so he wasn’t doing the lying, but he’s no more entitled to stay than the child of someone who lied on a mortgage application and later lost his home.


The reason we have 4 to 6 million illegal-alien visa overstayers is that we have no effective way of tracking the departure of foreign visitors. This despite the fact that Congress has mandated the development of an exit-tracking system eight separate times, starting in 1996. As Homeland Security secretary, Janet Napolitano dismissed the importance of exit-tracking. At a 2009 hearing, she told Senator Dianne Feinstein the “value of that system to security is dubious.” While the Schumer-Rubio amnesty bill passed by the Senate in June made development of such a system a sort-of prerequisite before amnestied former illegal aliens upgrade to full green-card status, the ten-year deadline would mean that exit-tracking wouldn’t be in place until more than a quarter-century after Congress’s original mandate.

Exacerbating this problem with regard to South Korea and other countries is the Visa Waiver Program. As the name suggests, people from the 37 countries on the list don’t have to get visas for short tourist or business trips. Only those countries whose citizens are very unlikely to overstay are supposed to be included in the program. Unfortunately, the main force expanding the list of participating countries has been lobbying pressure from the travel industry and foreign governments. South Korea was added in 2008 and Greece—Greece—in 2010. This has been a significant driver of illegal immigration; the GAO reported earlier this year that, of a very large sample of apparent overstays, nearly half were people who entered under the Visa Waiver Program.


Topics: , ,

Share This

We welcome comments that add information or perspective, and we encourage polite debate. If you log in with a social media account, your comment should appear immediately. If you prefer to remain anonymous, you may comment as a guest, using a name and an e-mail address of convenience. Your comment will be moderated.
  • Greg Thomas

    Another loud-mouthed, militant illegal invader. These people have no fear of our laws because we do not enforce them. They know it and we know it!

    • Sick of it

      They also know our government is a dictatorship that will clamp down on us while ignoring or even rewarding them.

  • [Guest]

    >>>That translates to 4 to 6 million liars…

    The rest of the illegals—those who are not liars—should also be tossed out on their ears.

  • bigone4u

    “Ju Hong, arrested, looked across the table into the eyes of his enemy. But Hong, undocumented, felt liberated and empowered — even though the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officer standing a few feet from him could begin his deportation process with a stroke of the pen. “I’m undocumented, unafraid, …”
    Above is from one of many stories about the Jackie Chan look-alike in the student paper. if he ever looks into the eyes of his true enemy–white nationalists–he’s going to end up a whole lot less arrogant. The Immigration officers may be paper tigers, but WNs are the real thing.

  • Truthseeker

    I don’t care how well-educated or intelligent an illegal is. He’s still an illegal. U.S. citizenship, despite what our so-called leaders tell us, is not a universal right, it’s a privilege. This country became wealthy and powerful because it was populated by white people, and the system designed by the Founding Fathers was designed for white people to achieve an optimal result. You upset the balance that made it successful, everything starts going to hell.

    You realize how deep the brainwashing goes when U.S. natives feel ashamed to think of this country as exclusively theirs and can be guilt-tripped into giving it away, as though anyone in the world has as much right to it as they do. Just once I’d like to see a politician stand up and say “no more. I don’t care if you think I’m a racist, this is our country and these people have no right to be here.”

  • Spartacus

    You know, just because most asians are ok, doesn’t mean they’re all ok.

    • Ella

      Ethnic/racial groups are really out for themselves. Some Whites are just a weird lot and make no sense.

  • RHG

    I think we all know by now we live under a charade of a government. Oh, they are just awesome at doing some things, like keeping whitey in order and not letting him get to out control with his thoughts or actions. Everything else, well that’s kind of “iffy”.

  • Chip Carver

    Obama’s most recent heckler incident was staged. No doubt about it.

    Tracking? It seems as if the govt. does make make an attempt here and there to track Whites. Nothing at all is done to track non-Whites.

  • IstvanIN

    The primary purpose of a government is to protect its people and territory. We no longer have a government, we have an occupation bureaucracy.

  • IstvanIN

    The primary purpose of a government is to protect its people and territory. We no longer have a government, we have an occupation bureaucracy.

  • willbest

    Our deal with Iran should have been to let them keep their nuke program, and in exchange they promise to take our deportees. I bet that announcement would make people think twice about overstaying their VISA

  • Bossman

    There’s no visa tracking exit system because it is too difficult to do. Some people in the border regions enter and leave several times per day. Such a system would require massive computer databases operating 24 hrs per day non stop and very expensive to operate.

    • Greg Thomas

      If the IRS can do it, so could Immigration and Customs. The fact is they do not want to do it.

      • Bossman

        I’m not an expert on this subject but the IRS has a whole year to check up on people. I’ve a feeling that keeping track of millions who are forever coming and going would be much more difficult.

        • Greg Thomas

          Sending a man to the moon was difficult, but we did it. I could live with an entire year to check up on those coming and going. It is certainly better that what we have now, which is nothing. Perhaps the answer is to put a limit on the number of those we allow in, especially if we cannot keep track of them. The American people should have a say in the matter and not our corrupted, inept, diversity loving government.

  • emiledurk16

    If the heckler was a white European who had overstayed his visa he would not have been a guest” of the white house, and would have been immediately arrested. I think we see how things today work.

  • RegisterToPost

    The irony here is staggering, that a Korean illegal of all people would be advocating for the European cultural destruction of the United States. Koreans are a fiercely nationalistic people with a healthy sense of ethnic and cultural pride, one that European Americans here could do well to emulate.

    Is Mr. Hong aware of the history of his own nation and the Japanese occupation? Where, from 1910 to 1945, Koreans experienced wholesale unchecked Japanese immigration and the dismantling of the Korean culture and language? The Korean government was so concerned for its own culture that it banned Japanese imports until 1998!

    How would Mr. Hong feel today if 500,000 Somalians immigrated to Korea as refugees?

    What if Mr. Hong was a White overstayer in Korea? He would find it very difficult to get around his daily life as the Korean government does not hand out benefits to illegals as a matter of course. Foreigners are issued a Korean Social Security number that is needed to do anything of note in Korea – opening a bank account, enrolling in school, buying a mobile phone, even buying things online.

    Supposing that Mr. Hong came with his White wife and had a child in a bid to gain citizenship? No dice, Korea does not recognize jus soli. Google “bangladesh girl deported korea” to see an example of this.

    If Mr. Hong overstayed his visa, he would be at risk of being arrested any time by police. And the Korean police do check immigration status and criminals are deported. Even if Mr. Hong left of his own free will, Korea does have exit controls and overstayers are fined and, for particularly egregious cases, banned. It certainly does help that Korea is a virtual island with actively patrolled borders.

    That Mr. Hong would advocate for unchecked immigration into the US suggests that he hates White culture.

    • Ella

      I know some countries in Central Europe would require me to sign in and provide passport number at any hotel that I stayed. I stayed for some months and finally asked why I was required to sign into their ledger occasionally. They informed me that they gave the books over to local police who track the tourist length of stay. I just gave a blank stare as I realized how other countries operate.

  • 5Sardonicus

    I agree and many other countries follow this procedure. They stamp the passport of visitors to indicate how long you can stay. Foreign passports are checked by various authorities on a regular basis, and foreigners arrested for even minor infractions with an expired passport are promptly deported, unlike like our declining, irrational republic

  • Read the first paragraph carefully.

    Along with leftover pork sausage dressing, I smell a setup on the part of everyone involved, for the purpose of making Obama seem moderate and seem like he’s actually deporting illegal aliens, when we know that he’s not and really no President since Eisenhower has. Obama just loves it when all these left wing crackpots scream at him as if we’re not supposed to think he’s one of them, because their screaming at him gives him the propaganda opportunity to put some apparent distance between himself and them, again, even though they’re one and the same.

    Mark Steyn, sitting in for Rush today, said that Roger Ailes has written that when he (Ailes) was a Richard Nixon apparatchik, one of his jobs was to get the worst looking smelliest most repulsive left wingers to protest Nixon in places where they would be hard to miss. So if Nixon and his people found a way to goose protesters and the images thereof to craft an image of himself, why wouldn’t Obama?