Homeland Security Network Blog

The information source for first responders.

  • Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Categories
    Categories Displays a list of categories from this blog.
  • Archives
    Archives Contains a list of blog posts that were created previously.
Recent blog posts

A New Strategy Against ISIS and al Qaeda

Posted by on in Terrorism
b2ap3_thumbnail_new-strategy.jpg
  The U.S. has been relying too heavily on Shiites and Kurds. It needs to cultivate Sunni Arab partners. Wall Street Journal By Frederick Kagan and Kimberly Kagan The Trump administration is set to supersize President Obama’s strategy to defeat Islamic State, sending more American forces to the region and lifting restraints on direct participation in combat and when to use armed force. Yet any victory under the current approach will be ephemeral. Even if American proxies, backed by U.S. military forces, wrest Raqqa, Syria, and Mosul, Iraq, away from ISIS, success will be fleeting. The most important error is the near-exclusive focus on Islamic State at the expense of serious efforts against al Qaeda. Destroying ISIS is necessary but not sufficient. As the Obama administration turned its attention toward ISIS, al Qaeda learned from its failures. It has temporarily deprioritized spectacular attacks on the global stage and focused on...
b2ap3_thumbnail_Islamic-State.jpg
Jihad Watch by Christine Williams Switzerland is still a target for militants despite so far avoiding attacks like those in Germany and France. The government is examining whether to require employees of private companies who manage asylum cases to report clients’ possible extremist behaviour to authorities. The government clearly should implement a reporting system in the interests of national security. The people of Switzerland have already given ample indication of their willingness to unite in the fight against jihad: Last year, Swiss voters agreed to extend the intelligence service’s authority to monitor internet traffic, deploy drones and hack foreign computer systems, in large part to counter extremist threats. A “clear majority of Swiss voters” agreed to “an overhaul of the confederation’s spying powers.” One remaining strategy that needs to be implemented in Switzerland, and, in fact, throughout the West: the monitoring of mosques where imams are discovered to be preaching hate...

U.S. Charges Hamas Female Terrorist 16 Years Later

Posted by on in Terrorism
b2ap3_thumbnail_us-16-years.jpg
The Clarion Project By Meira Svirsky The U.S. Department of Justice has decided to charge Hamas terrorist Ahlam Aref Ahmad Al-Tamimi for her part in the bombing of the Sbarro pizza restaurant in the heart of downtown Jerusalem, close to 16 years after the event. Tamimi has also been placed on the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorists list. The bombing killed 15 people, including two U.S. citizens (one of whom was pregnant) and wounded 130. Tamimi, a Jordanian citizen, was captured and sentenced to 16 life terms in prison in 2003 but released in a prisoner exchange in 2011. She now lives in Jordan, whose constitution prohibits extradition of its citizens. In a video made after her release (see below), Tamimi expressed happiness about the bombing and declares she would “do it again today.” Read more: https://clarionproject.org/u-s-charges-hamas-female-terrorist-16-years-later/...
b2ap3_thumbnail_Mosul.jpg
by Tom Vanden Brook , USA TODAY WASHINGTON — President Trump is asking Congress to provide an immediate $30 billion funding boost for the Pentagon, with $5 billion of it earmarked to quicken the pace of the fight against the Islamic State, according to documents released Thursday. The rest of the cash for the remainder of this fiscal year is characterized as a down payment on rebuilding the military by funding “critical budget shortfalls” for troops, training, weapons and building projects. The spending would be partially offset by $18 billion in cuts to other non-defense programs. The White House did not specify where those cuts should be made, asking Congress to make the reductions. “It represents a critical first step in investing in a larger, more ready, and more capable military force,” Mick Mulvaney, the director of the Office of Management and Budget, wrote in a letter to House Speaker Paul...
b2ap3_thumbnail_cyber-challenges.jpg
by In Homeland Security It appears that President Trump is poised to select Rob Joyce, currently chief of the National Security Agency’s secretive Tailored Access Operations (TAO), as his cybersecurity czar. If Joyce assumes that role, he will have some daunting challenges ahead. There are multiple issues to consider with Joyce in that role. Since Edward Snowden pulled back the curtain and revealed some of the insidious inner-workings and questionable ethics of the NSA, there has been lingering concerns over privacy and trust between that organization and private industry and citizens. Coming from a group that is considered mysterious even within the NSA itself makes Joyce more or less the poster child for that distrust. “Throughout his presidential campaign, Trump made it clear he was no friend to industry or individual privacy rights. Trump’s appointment of Joyce can go one of two ways,” suggests Ajay Arora, CEO of Vera. “He...
b2ap3_thumbnail_defense-large.png
by Defense One President Trump has allowed CIA to resume its drone strikes on suspected terrorists, “changing the Obama administration’s policy of limiting the spy agency’s paramilitary role and reopening a turf war between the agency and the Pentagon,” The Wall Street Journal reported Monday.   How the system was working when Obama left office: “The CIA used drones and other intelligence resources to locate suspected terrorists and then the military conducted the actual strike.” The idea there, the Journal writes, was “to promote transparency and accountability. The CIA, which operates under covert authorities, wasn’t required to disclose the number of suspected terrorists or civilian bystanders it killed in drone strikes. The Pentagon, however, must publicly report most airstrikes.” The CIA wasted little time, using “its new authority in late February in a strike on a senior al Qaeda leader in Syria, Abu al-Khayr al-Masri, U.S. officials said. The strike in northern Syria...

ISIS Leader Killed In Botched Suicide Attack

Posted by on in Terrorism
b2ap3_thumbnail_botched.jpg
International Business Times by John Walsh An Indonesian national, who was the commander of Islamic State group militants in Southeast Asia, died fighting in Syria amid a botched suicide attack on troops loyal to Syrian President Bashar Assad. Bahrumsyah died when his car, which was packed with explosives, prematurely exploded before reaching a unit of the Syrian Army near the central city of Palmyra. ISIS confirmed Bahrumsyah’s death Tuesday, but posted on its Twitter account that the suicide attack by “Abu Muhammad al-Indonesi,” successfully inflicted significant damage on Syrian troops. Abu Muhammad al-Indonesi was the nom de guerre given to Bahrumsyah by ISIS, the Straits Times reported Tuesday. Bahrumsyah reportedly was handpicked by ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi to lead a unit of fighters from the Malay Archipelago in the Syrian civil war. An expert on international terror groups, Ridlwan Habi, told Republika that obituaries and prayers for Bahrumsyah have been pouring in on Twitter from ISIS members...
b2ap3_thumbnail_graveyard.jpg
By Leith Fadel BEIRUT, LEBANON (12:30 A.M.) – A massive graveyard filled with dead Islamic State (ISIS) terrorists was found by Iraqi soldiers in the Fallujah countryside on Tuesday. According to Iraqi activists, the graveyard was found inside the village of Al-Saqlawiyah, while the Iraqi Armed Forces were combing through the area. ISIS graveyard pictured by the Iraqi forces on Tuesday. Inside this large graveyard was at least 500 marked graves that held the remains of Islamic State terrorists killed during the battle of Fallujah last year. ince losing Fallujah in 2016, the Islamic State forces have retreated west towards the Syrian border, where they will likely make their last stand against the Iraqi Army near Al-Qa’im. Read more: https://www.almasdarnews.com/article/massive-graveyard-filled-dead-isis-terrorists-found-near-fallujah/...
b2ap3_thumbnail_isis-fighters_20170315-041046_1.jpg
  By REUTERS     The lawyer tasked with overseeing British laws on terrorism, said the militants were targeting cities and posed "an enormous ongoing risk which none of us can ignore." LONDON - Islamic State militants are planning "indiscriminate attacks on innocent civilians" in Britain on a scale similar to those staged by the Irish Republican Army 40 years ago, the head of the country's new terrorism watchdog said.In an interview with the Sunday Telegraph published on Sunday, Max Hill, the lawyer tasked with overseeing British laws on terrorism, said the militants were targeting cities and posed "an enormous ongoing risk which none of us can ignore."     "In terms of the threat that's represented, I think the intensity and the potential frequency of serious plot planning – with a view to indiscriminate attacks on innocent civilians of whatever race or color in metropolitan areas – represents an...
b2ap3_thumbnail_isis_20170315-040044_1.jpg
By Yonah Jeremy Bob   Could ISIS be planning to target Israelis with chemical weapons, especially as thousands of them will travel to Europe during Passover vacation in April, serving as convenient potential targets? With ISIS desperate and on the run, is there a heightened danger that the group will use chemical weapons against Israel or against European targets, including Jews and Israeli tourists there? The Prime Minister’s Counter-Terrorism Bureau (LOTAR) warned over the weekend that ISIS might be plotting to carry out chemical attacks in Europe in the coming months.LOTAR intends to issue a travel advisory to the tens of thousands of Israelis planning to vacation in Europe over Passover.   The bureau is particularly concerned with the possibility that, due to losses ISIS is sustaining in Iraq and Syria, foreign fighters there will return to their homes in Europe and carry out attacks along the lines of the...

Countering the Internet of Terrorism

Posted by on in Terrorism
b2ap3_thumbnail_Col.-Duggan.jpg
by Co-Authored by Col. Patrick M. Duggan Commander, Joint Base Myer-Hender son Hall Should you be scared of your new thermostat? Maybe, if it is WIFI-enabled and you haven’t secured it. Why? The next generation of terrorism is here, and it will use your connected devices – thermostats, fridges, lights, elevators, industrial controls, cars – even toys. These smart devices represent the latest pathways for tech-savvy terrorists to wreak chaos. But before unplugging everything you own to live off the grid, take heart in the fact, at least at the national level, we still have time to prepare. While traditional DoD counter-terrorism (CT) efforts have mainly emphasized direct action, future U.S. security measures must also adapt to harness the Internet of Things (IoT). Simply put, the IoT’s inexorable growth portends new methods for destruction but also provides new mechanisms for defense. These same IoT devices are as capable for U.S....

Counteracting Vehicles Used as Weapons [VIDEO]

Posted by on in Terrorism
b2ap3_thumbnail_The-truck-that-crashed-through-a-Christmas-market-in-central-Berlin-.jpg
American Security Today By Tammy Waitt Guest Editorial by Greg Hamm, Delta Scientific, VP of Marketing & Sales On December 19, 2016, the news exploded with information about a vehicle attack on a Christmas market in Berlin that killed at least 12 and injured more than 50. Less than a month before, the U.S. State Department had warned about such attacks in public places throughout Europe, saying that extremist groups including the Islamic State and Al Qaeda were planning to focus on such locales during the Holiday Season. Indeed, both terrorist groups have called on followers to use trucks in particular to attack crowds. On July 14 (2016), a truck plowed into Bastille Day vacationers in Nice, France, killing 86 people. Four months later, on  November 28, 2016, a car ramming attack and mass stabbing occurred in the United States at 9:52 a.m. EST at Ohio State University’s Watts Hall. The attacker, Somali refugee Abdul Razak Ali...
b2ap3_thumbnail_defense-secure.jpg
By Julian Sanchez - Defense One It’s a cliche of political scandals that “the coverup is worse than the crime”: Attempts to conceal misconduct, because they’re easier to prove and provide otherwise elusive evidence of a guilty mind, often end up being more politically damaging than the underlying misconduct would have been. In the case of the latest Wikileaks document dump, the first in a planned series from a cache the site has dubbed “Vault 7,” we have an apparent reversal of the formula: The un-coverup—the fact of the leak itself—is probably more significant than the substance of what has thus far been revealed. There are, of course, some points of real interest in the archive of documents, mostly concerning an array of hacking tools and software exploits developed or used by the Central Intelligence Agency’s Engineering Development Group—and it’s likely more will emerge as reporters and analysts churn through more than...
b2ap3_thumbnail_isis-ultimatum.jpg
by Terror-Alert.com MOSUL: ISIS are facing defeat from the US-led coalition in the last stronghold in Iraq Jihadi thugs have been on the ropes in the city – the final stronghold of the death cult in Iraq. Iraqi Army forces and their US allies are sweeping through devastated streets and on the verge of retaking Mosul from ISIS. Fanatical fighters remain hunkered down in the city’s last jihadi controlled neighbourhoods – and the US have told them they are all going to die. The moves comes as US President Donald Trump announced 1,000 American soldiers are heading to the Middle East to beat the cult. Read more: http://terror-alert.com/news/isis-terrorists-issued-brutal-ultimatum-by-us-all-of-you-are-going-to-die?uid=53439...
b2ap3_thumbnail_Iran_Nuclear.jpg
The Washington Times By Rowan Scarborough - The Washington Times Iran has spent up to $100 billion in the past five years financing operations in Syria that were instrumental in keeping President Bashar Assad in power, according to a book on the hard-line Islamic theocracy’s vast business holdings and wealth. The e-book “Iran: The Rise of the Revolutionary Guards’ Financial Empire” estimates that the Islamic republic has paid nearly $100 million a year in salaries to a grab bag of mercenaries it sent to Syria under the direction of the notorious Quds force. Iran is meddling in Syria as the Shiite-dominated regime directs the largest arms buildup in its history, focusing on new missiles and ways to deploy forces into regional conflicts, such as Syria’s civil war. The e-book was released Wednesday by the Islamic republic’s largest internal dissident group — the National Council of Resistance of Iran, which includes...
b2ap3_thumbnail_germany-terror.jpg
Heat Street Germany’s top intelligence official has warned that the country faces an “explosive security situation” from terror that is greater than it has ever been. Hans-Georg Maassen, the president of the domestic intelligence service the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV), said the threat is mainly posed by religious and political extremists acting in the name of Islam. However, extreme Right wing movements have also been stockpiling weapons in response to the surge in immigrants in Germany, according to Mr Maassen. He said this week: “There is a continuing high threat situation for Germany and German interests from Islamist terrorism.” The BfV estimates that the number of Islamic fundamentalists willing to use violence has grown substantially in Germany in recent years. It is now thought that at least 45,000 Islamists are in Germany – among them people willing to commit acts of terror or who would...

Iran’s Nuclear Deceit Home

Posted by on in Terrorism
b2ap3_thumbnail_Switzerland-Nuclear-Reactor-.jpg
The Clarion Project By L. R. B. Mann, M.Sc Ph.D There is little if any doubt that Iran is developing nuclear weapons.  The two main categories of nuclear bombs they are working towards are exemplified by the first atomic bombs ever exploded: High-enriched uranium (<25 kg), suddenly assembled to form a critical mass (as used on Hiroshima in 1945), and Plutonium-239 (<10 kg) suddenly compressed several-fold to render it critical at its new higher density, as tested at Truth Or Consequences, New Mexico and then used on Nagasaki in 1945. The Encyclopedia Americana article on the subject of atomic bomb design, composed by eminent experts who had served at the heart of the USA nuclear weapons program, is surprisingly informative in regards to Iran’s aspirations. Natural uranium contains only 0.7% of the fissile isotope U-235 (the rest if made up of U-238, which is not fissile in ordinary reactors or...

US Marines Deployed In Syria To Combat ISIS

Posted by on in Terrorism
b2ap3_thumbnail_MarinesSyria.jpg
International Business Times by Vishakha Sonawane Hundreds of U.S. Marine Corps troops have been deployed in Syria to fight the Islamic State group, also known as ISIS, the U.S.-led coalition confirmed Thursday. "We are talking about an additional 400 or so forces in total, and they will be there for a temporary period," the coalition spokesman U.S. Air Force Colonel John Dorrian told Reuters. The forces — a Marines artillery unit and Army Rangers — arrived in the “last few days,” Dorrian reportedly said. The troops will work with local alliances in Syria, including the Syrian Democratic Forces and the Syrian Arab Coalition, he said, adding, the forces will not be given a frontline task. On Wednesday, the Washington Post was the first to report, citing defense officials, about the deployment. The forces are part of an amphibious task force of the 11th U.S. Marine Expeditionary Unit that San Diego...
b2ap3_thumbnail_counter-terrorism-stops-britain-latest-figures.jpg
THE number of people stopped at ports, airports and international rail stations under counter-terrorism powers fell by almost a third last year, new figures show. Express Schedule 7 of the Terrorism Act 2000, which allows officers to question individuals entering or leaving the country, can be used to determine whether the person in question appears to be concerned in the commission, preparation and instigation of acts of terrorism.  Figures indicate there has been a sharp decline in deployment of the powers in recent years.  Home Office data released on Thursday show that in the year to the end of December, a total of 19,355 people were examined under Schedule 7 in Britain. This was a 30 per cent drop compared with 2015, when 27,530 stops were made, while the number has fallen from more than 85,000 in 2009/10.  Detentions following examinations decreased by 16 per cent, from 1,828 in the...
b2ap3_thumbnail_DHS-America.jpg
By: Homeland Security Today Staff Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary John Kelly was asked Tuesday for information about directives in Trump’s original January 27 Executive Order, Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States, which weren’t affected by the court's temporary restraining order (TRO). On February 3, a federal court issued a TRO preventing the enforcement of five specific sections of the original Executive Order, but several provisions of the original order were not subject to the TRO. In a letter to Kelly, Rep. Kathleen Rice (D-NY), a member of the House Committee on Homeland Security and ranking member of the Subcommittee on Counterterrorism and Intelligence, pointed out in a statement that “while a federal court issued a temporary restraining order preventing the enforcement of some of the Executive Order’s most controversial provisions, several significant sections of the original Executive Order were not affected by the TRO...