An illegal border crosser – probably Jordanian – tried to force his way onto a US Marine base — why isn’t this a bigger story?

By Todd Bensman on May 13, 2024

New York Post, May 13

In the early morning of May 3, two men in a box truck pulled up to the front gate of Quantico Marine Corps Base, 35 miles southwest of Washington, DC, and tried to lie their way in, claiming they were Amazon delivery men.

After skeptical military police channeled them to an area for secondary security inspection, the driver hit the gas in defiance of halt orders and tried to barrel the truck into the base’s town center. Quick-thinking MPs put up road barriers that stopped the truck.

The Marines ended up citing the two for trespassing on federal property.

We only know this because of a report in the Potomac Local News, founded in 2010 “to help people understand what is happening in their local communities in Northern Virginia.”

Yet while reporter Kelly Sienkowski, who broke what happened, focuses on her local readership, she’s shocked this story hasn’t gotten more national attention.

Sienkowski’s story quoted a prepared email statement from base spokesman Capt. Michael Curtis, shared with me and The Post, confirming the incident’s basic contours but no more.

But Sienkowski kept pressing. She cited “multiple anonymous sources” who told her that one of the two individuals in the truck was a Jordanian foreign national who “recently crossed the southern border into the U.S.” and also that one of people in the truck — they didn’t say which one — is on the U.S. terrorist watch list.

After citing the two men for trespassing, the Marine Corps turned them over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the sources told Sienkowski.

The big question in the room that has gone unanswered for more than a week after Sienkowski reported the story is, of course, this one:

Did illegal border crossers from the Middle East just try to attack a U.S. military base?

Many more questions deserve answers too. But the federal government has gone mum.

Have U.S. investigators ruled out a terrorism motive? Do U.S. counterterrorism agencies even want to know, and is anyone even investigating that question?

Were there any weapons in the truck or on the illegal immigrants it carried? Was the truck itself the weapon?

When and how exactly did the men enter the United States? Was the Jordanian a Palestinian Arab from Gaza and angry about U.S. support for Israel’s retaliatory war? Many Palestinians hold Jordanian passports.

Did an overwhelmed Border Patrol accidentally release the one who was on the FBI’s terrorist watch list?

It wouldn’t be the first time: Border Patrol has encountered at least 340 immigrants on the terrorism watch list since the mass migration began three years ago. In at least eight instances because of it, the overrun Border Patrol has accidentally released watch-listed illegal border crossers and had to frantically hunt them down.

What has ICE done with this pair since the MPs turned them over?

I emailed Sienkowski to query her about what she’s learned in the week since her incursion story published. Not much. No one will tell her anything more, and no bigger media outlet has joined her lonely quest.

A local mom living in northern Virginia, who has no previous formal journalism background, Sienkowski took a few minutes out to chat with me on Mother’s Day. She said she pursued the story after seeing a comment on social media, published what she could find out and has fought a very lonely battle for more answers.

No one will tell Sienkowski anything, certainly not the U.S. Marine Corps nor ICE.

“We have reached out to almost every elected official, and many running for office,” Sienkowski said. She named names: Congresswoman Abigail Spanberger (D-Va. 7th District), Virginia Republican candidate for congress Derrick Anderson, Republican candidate for congress Cameron Hamilton, Coles District Supervisor Yesli Vega, “and many more local candidates and supervisors.”

“What really blows my mind is that no other media has followed up on the story after a whole week has passed,” Sienkowski told me. “We need more transparency in how our border problems are impacting national security through localized incidents like this one.”