Homegrown Violent Extremists (HVEs) in the US, 2016

Homegrown Violent Extremists (HVEs) in the US, 2016

Homegrown violent extremists (HVEs) are individuals inspired—as opposed to directed—by a foreign terrorist organization and radicalized in the countries in which they are born, raised, or reside.

HVEs pose the greatest threat to New Jersey and will likely remain so this year.

Support to Religious Facilities in Face of Threats

NJOHSP continues to offer resources to religious facilities in New Jersey, especially following recent bomb scares against Jewish centers across the United States and Canada. On February 20, 11 Jewish Community Centers (JCCs) in various states received bomb threats, coming on the heels of three waves of threats in January that resulted in 69 incidents at 54 JCCs in 27 states and Ontario, Canada.

Blind Sheikh’s Death Sparks Calls for Revenge

Blind Sheikh’s Death Sparks Calls for Revenge

Al-Qa’ida affiliates, specifically al-Qa’ida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and al-Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), are calling for retaliatory attacks in response to the death of Egyptian cleric Omar Abdel Rahman—often referred to as “the Blind Sheikh.” On Saturday, Rahman died at a federal prison in North Carolina where he was serving a life sentence for his involvement in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, which killed six and injured about 1,000.

At a Glance - February 21

“Blind Sheikh,” Mastermind of the First World Trade Center Attack, Dies in Federal Prison; White Supremacists: South Carolina Man Arrested for Allegedly Planning Attack “in the Spirit of Dylann Roof”; Friend of San Bernardino Shooter Pleads Guilty to Earlier Terror Plots and Weapons Charges

Rumiyah 6: A Further Signal of ISIS’s Decline

The content of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria’s (ISIS) latest edition of its online English-language magazine Rumiyah—released on February 4—suggests the group continues to use propaganda to compensate for a spate of territorial and leadership losses since early 2015. Rumiyah 6 centers around three themes—targeting Turkey, local and regional “successes,” and the importance of martyrdom operations to strengthen global followers’ morale.

At a Glance - February 6

Quebec Mosque Attack Suspect Charged With Six Counts of Murder; School Security: Linden Police Chief Discusses Resources and Coordination Needed to Investigate School Threats; Florida Man Convicted of Plotting Beach Attack

2017 Terrorism Threat Assessment

2017 Terrorism Threat Assessment

On Saturday, September 17, 2016, the citizens of New Jersey witnessed a horrifying event as visitors to Seaside Park in Ocean County were rattled by an explosion minutes before a US Marine Corps 5K run. The series of bombings that followed in New York City and Elizabeth were a stark reminder of the very real threat we face from individuals who want to disrupt our way of life. No longer was terrorism over there; it had arrived here in our backyard. 

Homegrown Violent Extremists (HVEs)

Homegrown Violent Extremists (HVEs) are individuals inspired—as opposed to directed—by a foreign terrorist organization and radicalized in the countries in which they are born, raised, or reside. HVEs pose the highest threat to New Jersey and will remain the most likely and persistent threat this year.

Sovereign Citizen Extremists

Sovereign citizen extremists in New Jersey mostly engage in nonviolent activities, such as self-identifying in court paperwork and traffic-stop encounters and filing liens against law enforcement and public officials. In May 2016, legislation in New Jersey enhanced the penalties on sovereign citizen extremists filing fraudulent financial documents or liens as a retaliatory tactic against public officials; however, criminal penalties are unlikely to deter sovereign citizen extremists because they are adopting new methods to circumvent laws.

Animal Rights Extremists (ARE)

From 2001-06, there were eight documented cases of animal rights extremism in New Jersey involving acts of vandalism and animal liberation. There have been no reported incidents since 2006, when key members of Stop Huntingdon Animal Cruelty (SHAC) were convicted and received prison sentences of four to six years.  

Environmental Extremists

Environmental rights extremists view manmade threats to the environment as so severe that violence and property damage are justified to prevent further destruction. Groups such as the Earth Liberation Front (ELF) and Earth First! adopt a “by any means necessary” approach, although violent tactics such as arson are considered a last resort. ELF considers acts of property destruction as “nonviolent” because no human beings or animals are directly targeted.