In addition to outside and insider threats to our national security, one area discussed even less these days due to our debate on healthcare and Republican political goals to decrease the Federal Government’s reach and personal rights and responsibilities, human trafficking in the USA remains a problem.
The United States has many areas of concerns that need to be addressed to maintain our status as the world’s number one super power. One area in particular is the human trafficking and illegal sex trade industry that creates billions in revenue for organized criminals. According to the State Department approximately 17,000 individuals are trafficked into the U.S. to support the illegal sex industry (Hodge, 2008). However, these high figures are just a snap shot or glimpse of the sex trafficking industry within the U.S., because this does not account of the domestic trafficking rates (Hodges, 2008). This is catastrophic because these criminal violations go unreported and thus making it hard for law enforcement to apprehend the traffickers. Many of the sex traffickers are importing their victims from around the world and utilizing the U.S. market to exploit these young woman and children ranging from ages 12-25 (Hodges, 2008).
How does human trafficking affect the U.S. and weakens U.S. National Security?
Human traffickers are professional at generating fraudulent documents and creating clandestine locations to house their victims while generating large sums of money. Traffickers who have access to these types of resources use them to smuggle terrorist, criminals and other illegal goods into the U.S. such as weapons and drugs. Due to the increasing threats by these organized criminal groups, the U.S. has to increase their law enforcement and intelligence personnel, which creates additional troubles for the U.S. economy.
Additionally, the cost of apprehending, prosecuting and eventual housing of these criminals will drain the federal, state and local economies already hurting from the economic crisis of 2008. Other areas of concern that will need to be addressed by the U.S. Government are the treatment and aid that will be needed by the victims. This creates additional cost on the U.S. economy that is working with limited resources. “For example, many of these women suffer from physical and mental breakdowns from engaging in unwanted sexual activity multiple times a day from strangers (Hodges, 2008). In many instances the victims are mentally handicapped, unhealthy and addicted to drugs by their captors and victimizer (Hodges, 2008).
In conclusion, the U.S. has a serious threat currently and that will only get worse because of human trafficking and other connected criminal activity. This type of crime can and has lead to countless numbers of illegal aliens being brought into America, and once they have arrived they can cause serious damage. These damages include possible future terrorist attacks, supplying foreign governments with intelligence, and an increase in U.S. economic problems. Furthermore, the U.S. needs to find better ways to address the human trafficking within its borders, and increase border security to prevent more illegal’s from entering the country. Ultimately human trafficking and trafficking in general is a major threat to U.S. National Security.
Hodge, David R. 2008. Sexual trafficking in the united states: A domestic problem with transnational dimensions. Social Work 53, no. 2: 143-52, http://search.proquest.com/docview/215268242?accountid=8289.
If we are to survive as a nation, secure in our borders and homes, attention and action must be given to combat this growing problem.
God Bless America,