The United States "is almost inviting" terror attacks like the most recent strike inside a mall in Kenya if we don’t maintain vigilant monitoring of suspected terrorists in the nation, and support police and FBI efforts to do so, Rep. Peter King warned Monday.
"Unfortunately, whether it’s New York City or whether it’s the Justice Department, we seem to be stepping back from that," King, a Republican from New York, told "The Steve Malzberg Show."
"These terrorists in many ways are more sophisticated and more of a threat than they were before 9/11," he said. "We've been lucky and we've been good ... and sooner or later our luck is going to run out. We have to stay on [the] offense."
King said the only way to prevent attacks on so-called soft targets, like malls and hotels, is to "stop them before they get started."
He offered the example of the New York Police Department’s monitoring of Muslim communities "where you suspect the terrorists might come from ... to find out who's purchasing explosive-type materials from local stores, to find out if people are gathering, to find out if somebody has arrived from overseas and to see what they're doing."
"This requires constant surveillance, constant monitoring," but said it has come across as racial profiling.
King said there have been at least 40 Americans who have traveled from the United States to Somalia to train and fight along with the terrorist group al-Shabab, who took responsibility for the Nairobi mall attack in Kenya. King said "it could be Americans [were] in that group who attacked the mall."
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