Homeland Security warns of individuals using high-profile events to justify violence against ideological opponents, public gatherings, schools and more
The Department of Homeland Security issued a bulletin Tuesday warning of a “heightened threat environment” over the next several months as they monitor both risks of domestic terrorism and foreign adversaries looking to sow discord within the U.S. to promote acts of violence.
“The United States remains in a heightened threat environment, as noted in the previous Bulletin, and several recent attacks have highlighted the dynamic and complex nature of the threat environment,” DHS said in a new bulletin from the National Terrorism Advisory System.
“In the coming months, we expect the threat environment to become more dynamic as several high-profile events could be exploited to justify acts of violence against a range of possible targets,” DHS said.
The bulletin listed potential targets to include “public gatherings, faith-based institutions, schools, racial and religious minorities, government facilities and personnel, U.S. critical infrastructure, the media, and perceived ideological opponents.”
The department stressed that “foreign adversaries-including terrorist organizations and nation state adversaries-also remain intent on exploiting the threat environment to promote or inspire violence, sow discord, or undermine U.S. democratic institutions.”
“We continue to assess that the primary threat of mass casualty violence in the United States stems from lone offenders and small groups motivated by a range of ideological beliefs and/or personal grievances,” the bulletin said.
DHS pointed to several recent high-profile events including the mass shooting in Buffalo, New York, where the suspect in the grocery store attack allegedly claimed that he was motivated by racist, anti-Black, and anti-Semitic conspiracy theories. The department said it is monitoring online forums following the mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, that have been encouraging copycat attacks.