01.05.18

McCaul Releases January Terror Threat Snapshot

Washington, D.C. – House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul (R-TX) today released January’s Terror Threat Snapshot, a monthly assessment of the Committee’s continuing effort to highlight the growing threat America, the West, and the world face from ISIS and other Islamist terrorists.

Chairman McCaul: “Over the past year, we have seen the collapse of ISIS’ physical caliphate in Iraq and Syria. The group still has the capability, however, to conduct external operations, and the threat facing the United States and the West remains severe. December marked the first attempted suicide attack in the United States, when a terrorist detonated an explosive device in New York City, and large-scale ISIS-linked plots in Germany and St. Petersburg were foiled. Given the loss of its safe havens, ISIS has shifted its attention toward cyberspace to recruit, radicalize, and provide guidance and instructions for carrying out attacks. In this new year, we must continue to work with our allies across the globe to crush ISIS fighters wherever they may be and defeat ISIS in cyberspace.”

Key Points

  • This month saw a spike in homegrown Islamist incidents with four arrests in the United States for providing material support to ISIS. Two of those arrested also offered to commit attacks on behalf of the organization. These arrests bring the total number of homegrown jihadist cases in the U.S. since 2013 to 150.
  • December 12, 2017: Akayed Ullah, 27, a Bangladeshi immigrant living in Brooklyn, attempted to carry out the first suicide bombing in the U.S. Inspired by ISIS, Ullah built a low-tech explosive device that he detonated on the subway, wounding four, including himself.
  • December 20, 2017: A 29-year-old German citizen was arrested by German officials for planning an attack in Karlsruhe. The man has connections to ISIS and planned to ram a vehicle into crowds.
  • ISIS recruiter Abdullah Ibrahim al-Faisal was sanctioned by the U.S. Department of the Treasury for actions that directly contributed to attacks on innocent people around the world. Widely regarded as a key facilitator of people and material support, the designation by Treasury will greatly diminish his capabilities. Faisal is currently facing extradition proceedings in Jamaica.

The complete January Terror Threat Snapshot is available, here.
View the Committee’s interactive Terror Threat Snapshothere.

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