Tags: Al-Qaida | Homeland Security | ISIS/Islamic State | Middle East | Terror in London | Terror in Manchester | Trump Administration | War on Terrorism

Acting DHS Secretary: 9/11-Scale Attack 'Still Severe' Threat

Acting DHS Secretary: 9/11-Scale Attack 'Still Severe' Threat
Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke (Rex Features/AP)

By    |   Thursday, 19 October 2017 06:10 PM

ISIS is on the run in Iraq and Syria, but acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke said radical Islamic terrorists are plotting a new 9/11-scale attack.

In a speech at the U.S. embassy in London, Duke said smaller, low-level attacks that include the use of everyday objects like knives and vehicles were designed to maintain their support while working on bigger attack targets, U.K.-based news outlets reported.

"The threat is still severe," she said, The Times in London reported.

"The terrorist organizations, be it ISIS or al-Qaida or others, want to have the big explosion like they did on 9/11. They want to take down aircraft, the intelligence is clear on that."

"However, in the interim they need to keep their finances flowing, and they need to keep their visibility high, and they need to keep their members engaged, so they are using small plots, and they are happy to have small plots," she said, Evening Standard reported.

Referring to strikes in which terrorists have attacked people using knives or vehicles, Duke said "Creating terror is their goal."

"And so a van attack, a bladed weapon attack, causes terror and continues to disrupt the world – but does not mean they've given up on a major aviation plot," she said, the Evening Standard reported.

Duke warned it was taking less time for terrorists to plan attacks as they could exploit "safe spaces online" to evade detection, the outlet noted.

She added one of the biggest threats to the safety of aviation travel was the free movement of goods and people between countries.

"What we believe is that because of the movement of goods and people, we have to raise the baseline worldwide, we can't only consider our borders," she said.

ISIS has inspired dozens of radical Islamists to launch attacks alone or in small cells across Europe and North America — including a Nov. 13, 2015 attack on Paris when an ISIS cell carried out shooting and suicide bomb attacks against a range of targets across the French capital.

The group's supporters have also struck in Nice, San Bernardino, Orlando, Berlin, London, and Manchester, Newsweek noted.

Duke's speech came a day after Andrew Parker, the chief of Britain's MI5 domestic security service, called the threat of radical Islamist attacks in Britain "more diverse than I've ever known" and the scale "at which we are operating is greater than ever before."

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Radical Islamic terrorists, including ISIS and al-Qaida, are plotting a new 9/11-scale attack, despite being he run in Iraq and Syria, acting Secretary of Homeland Security Elaine Duke said Thursday.
dhs, elaine duke, terrorism, terrorist attack
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2017-10-19
Thursday, 19 October 2017 06:10 PM
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