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The FBI, in conjunction with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the National Counterterrorism Center, issued a warning on Tuesday about the heightened risk of violence by lone actors during the holiday season.
The public service announcement highlighted concerns about large public gatherings being potential targets for violence, particularly against Jewish, Christian, Muslim, and Arab communities.
The announcement emphasized that the holiday season and other notable winter events might see a rise in calls for violence, exacerbated by developments in the Israel-Hamas conflict and instances of domestic violence that could inspire copycat or retaliatory attacks. The agencies urged the public to stay vigilant and report any threats or suspicious activities.
FBI Director Christopher Wray recently reported a 60% increase in hate crime investigations in the US, many targeting the Jewish community since the outbreak of the war. He assured that the FBI is actively working to prevent attacks inspired by Hamas, as there have been increased calls for violence against the US.
Wray stated, “Given the steady drumbeat of calls for attacks by foreign terrorist organizations since Oct. 7, we’re working around the clock to identify and disrupt potential attacks by those inspired by Hamas’s horrific terrorist attacks in Israel.” This statement was made during his appearance before the Senate Judiciary Committee last week.