The Dept. of Homeland Security issued a new national terrorism advisory on Wednesday ahead of the upcoming holidays which might be “possible targets for acts of violence.”
The new National Terrorism Advisory System (NTAS) Bulletin specifies threats that are from “small groups and individuals engaged in violence, including domestic violent extremists (DVEs) and people motivated or inspired by foreign terrorists and other malign foreign influences.”
The publication says these people are using online forums “to spread and influence violent extremist narratives and help promote violent activity,” which is made worse by “perceived government overreach in implementation of public health safety protocols” amid the pandemic.
The DHS did note that it wasn’t aware of any real or immediate threats to any certain location, but also added that it thinks “ethnically or racially motivated violent extremists and anti-authority/anti-government extremists” will continue to be a threat to the United States into 2022.
The publication specified areas that are more risky have been the target of prior attacks, such as commercial facilities, public gatherings, and houses of worship, where crowds might be gathered, and a possible mass casualty situation could take place.
The DHS stated it is issuing intelligence and guidance assessments to local and state partners, and is “engaging industry partners to help with identifying and responding to the spread of false narratives, conspiracy theories, and disinformation on social media sites and other online platforms.”
The agency also called on the public to report online threats that are made to law enforcement, threats of violence, and suspicious activities.
DHS Sec. Alejandro N. Mayorkas stated, “Today, we are issuing the fourth NTAS publication since Jan. 2021. The threat stream hasn’t changed significantly; however this is a crucial product that keeps the public up to date about threats facing the U.S. and highlights the importance of the public remaining vigilant and reporting any suspicious activity to police.”
In June, the White House announced Pres. Joe Biden’s National Strategy for fighting Domestic Terrorism, a first-of-its-kind, four point approach to improving how domestic terrorism is identified, defined, and combated. The main aim of the strategy is to target people with anti-government or racist ideology, which the Biden administration stated is espoused by domestic terrorists.
Author: Blake Ambrose