Nicholas Wu, USA TODAY
Published 6: 08 p.m. ET Jan. 4, 2020
The Department of Homeland Security issued a National Terrorism Advisory System Bulletin in the wake of top Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani’s killing in an airstrike ordered by President Donald Trump.
Acting DHS Secretary Chad Wolf wrote in a tweet that the new bulletin was intended to “inform & reassure the American public, state/local governments & private partners that DHS is actively monitoring & preparing for any specific, credible threat, should one arise.”
The bulletin cites the killing of Soleimani as the catalyst for increased threats of retaliation from Iran, though “at this time, we have no information indicating a specific, credible threat to the Homeland. Iran and its partners, such as Hizballah, have demonstrated the intent and capability to conduct operations in the United States.”
The bulletin cites Iran’s cyberwarfare capabilities and other previous homeland-based plots as potential threats.
The new @DHSgov NTAS Bulletin on the threat landscape was issued to inform & reassure the American public, state/local governments & private partners that DHS is actively monitoring & preparing for any specific, credible threat, should one arise. pic.twitter.com/iNnHU1TI9A
— Acting Secretary Chad Wolf (@DHS_Wolf) January 4, 2020
The bulletins are the replacement for the Department of Homeland Security’s previous color-coded terrorism threat system, which drew criticism for its lack of clarity. A bulletin indicates “current developments or general trends regarding threats of terrorism,” as opposed to an “elevated threat” or “imminent threat.”
Iran has vowed “harsh retaliation” for those responsible for Soleimani’s killing, and the Iranian Ambassador to the United Nations said “the response for a military action is military action.”
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Friday Soleimani’s killing was ordered ahead of an “imminent threat” in the region. The death of the general has sparked fears about a broader conflict in the Middle East amid escalated tensions between the United States and Iran.
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