DHS warns of heightened terror threat this holiday season

The agency identified LGBT individuals, as well as racial and religious minorities, as being at risk of violence.

Updated: November 30, 2022 - 4:11pm

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The Department of Homeland Security is warning that the country is at greater risk of terrorist activity in the wake of several mass shootings and acts of political violence.

"The United States remains in a heightened threat environment," DHS wrote in a bulletin through the National Terrorism Advisory System. "Domestic actors and foreign terrorist organizations continue to maintain a visible presence online in attempts to motivate supporters to conduct attacks in the Homeland."

"In the coming months, threat actors could exploit several upcoming events to justify or commit acts of violence," the DHS contended, including electoral certification processes, the holiday season, or the anniversary of the Jan. 6, 2021, incident at the U.S. Capitol.

The agency identified LGBT individuals, as well as racial and religious minorities, as being at risk of violence, citing the shooting at an LGBT bar in Colorado Springs, and an incident in November in which one individual circulated an anti-Semitic manifesto threatening to attack synagogues.

The agency also recalled the high-profile home invasion of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's San Francisco home, during which her husband, Paul Pelosi, suffered a hammer wound to the head. It further recounted a host of threats and violent actors moving against federal agents motived by "perceptions of government overreach."

"Our homeland continues to face a heightened threat environment — as we have seen, tragically, in recent acts of targeted violence — and is driven by violent extremists seeking to further a political or social goal or act on a grievance," said Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, according to The Hill.

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