Thursday, July 30, 2009

Homegrown Terrorism

ABC News interviewed Attorney General Eric Holder and he expressed his concerns about Americans becoming radicalized and turning to terrorism.

"I mean, that's one of the things that's particularly troubling: This whole notion of radicalization of Americans," Holder told ABC News during an interview in his SUV as his motorcade brought him from home to work. "Leaving this country and going to different parts of the world and then coming back, all, again, in aim of doing harm to the American people, is a great concern."

What I noted was that he was only referring to people who leave the country to be trained by a some sort of Al Qaeda-related person or group and return to attack here.

But as the (now withdrawn) Department of Homeland Security report (PDF) concerning right wing extremism, there are far more homegrown threats than the ones addressed by Attorney General Holder in this interview. And you don't have to look that hard to find them.

There are threats against President Obama. And while some may be from lunatics, the threats against him rose significantly after his election. There are threats against federal judges. Not that threatening judges is anything new, but those also continue to increase.

We have racists in the military, something that has plenty of history, and has caught the attention of the FBI (PDF).

This is not something new. Just enough Americans harbor some sort of hate, let it fester and then do something about it. They will always be with us in one form or another.

Consequently, our meaningless National Threat Advisory can never drop below Elevated (yellow) even if all the Al Qaeda-related groups were to make nice with us.

1 comment:

Lucas said...

Good point. Most people forget that an awful lot of terrorism has been committed in the United States by its own citizens. Abortion clinic bombings are terrorism. Church bombings are terrorism. Going on a random shooting spree in the mall is terrorism. Blowing up a federal building? Terrorism. That guy in Maine who was working on a dirty bomb in his basement? Totally terrorism. It's just that most of the time we don't call it what it is. Personally I am far more afraid of the Ted Kaczynskis of the world than I am of the Osama bin Ladens.