AI is being drafted to “secure the homeland.”

That’s according to DHS Secretary Allejandro Mayorkas.

The embattled Biden administration official has been repeatedly called to account for an ongoing border crisis that has seen uncontrolled waves of illegal border crossings, human trafficking, thousands of migrant children unaccounted for, and an escalation of dangerous synthetic drug trafficking.

Given those failures, perhaps a ChatGPT themed presser at least served to change the subject for a day.

Mayorkas said regarding AI technology:

“[AI will] drastically alter the threat landscape. Our department will lead in the responsible use of AI to secure the homeland and in defending against the malicious use of this transformational technology.”

Mayorkas cited the oft-used rubric of dangerous “disinformation” as a DHS use-case for AI, evoking the specter of government weaponization of AI to surveil and suppress rights of Americans.

Disinformation has become a go-to government mantra used to smear, delegitimize and suppress Constitutional free speech and political rights of Americans criticizing government policies and objectives.

Other tasks which DHS would explore for AI, according to the Secretary, included use in screening cargo for illicit goods, like drugs or products produced with slave labor, reported. (“DHS Creating Artificial Intelligence Task Force,” 21 Apr 2022.)

AI Announcement Comes Two Days After House Hearing on Ongoing Border Crisis

In hearings before the House Homeland Security Committee on 19 April, Mayorkas drew ridicule for maintaining the nation’s southern border was secure despite unprecedented uncontrolled border crossings.

Representative Michael Guest (R-MS), after running down a list of disturbing facts surrounding devastation stemming from border related crimes and chaos, asked whether he could contend that the nine sectors of the southern border stretching from the Rio Grande in Texas to San Diego were secure.

After first trying to avoid the question, according to a Fox News report, Mayorkas responded:

“It is my testimony that the border is secure, and we are working every day and night to increase its security. The challenges that we are experiencing at the border cannot be overstated.”

Illegal immigration crossing the southwest border into the U.S. in 2022 was estimated at 2.76 million, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, as reported by NBC news. (“Migrant border crossings in fiscal year 2022 topped 2.76 million, breaking previous record,” 22 Oct 2022.)

That figure dwarfed the previous high by more than one million.  That former high was in 2021, President Joe Biden’s first year in office.

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