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TerrorismJanuary 2017 terrorism: The numbers

Published 17 February 2017

The House Homeland Security Committee has released its February 2017 Terror Threat Snapshot, which details terrorism events and trends in January 2017. The snapshot is a monthly committee assessment of the threat America, the West, and the world face from ISIS and other Islamist terrorists. The document is produced by the Majority Staff of the committee. It is based on information culled from open source materials, including media reports, publicly available government statements, and nongovernmental assessments.

The end of the Bastille Day truck attack // Source: theconversation.com

The House Homeland Security Committee has released its February 2017 Terror Threat Snapshot, which details terrorism events and trends in January 2017. The snapshot is a monthly committee assessment of the threat America, the West, and the world face from ISIS and other Islamist terrorists. The document is produced by the Majority Staff of the committee. It is based on information culled from open source materials, including media reports, publicly available government statements, and nongovernmental assessments.

Key points
—- Although ISIS faces continued counterterrorism pressure in its key safe havens, the group’s external operations plotting appears undiminished. The New Year opened with a deadly ISIS-linked attack on a nightclub in Istanbul, Turkey, leaving 39 dead and demonstrating the terror group’s continued ability to inspire and organize major attacks.
—- European nations are moving forward with counterterrorism reforms designed to cope with the surging terror threat. Yet despite improvements, the continent still suffers from major security weaknesses that make European countries more vulnerable to attack and put U.S. interests overseas at risk.
—- On the home front, ISIS and radical Islamist ideology may have played a part in inspiring an attack this month on travelers at a Ft. Lauderdale airport by Esteban Santiago, a mentally disturbed gunman who has been charged with murdering five people in the attack.

Homegrown Islamist extremism
—- Authorities continue to track a high number of homegrown terror plots in the United States, and the number of cases since 9/11 is nearing a historic milestone: There have been nearly 200 total homegrown jihadist cases in the United States since 9/11 (the figure currently  stands at 193), a majority having taken place in just the past fewyears (This figure is lower than what was reported in the Committee’s January Terror Threat Snapshot [229 homegrown jihadist cases) because of a change in methodology. Previously, Committee staff counted individual jihadist arrests and attacks, but cases are now grouped on an “incident” basis, e.g. a terror cell is counted as “one” homegrown jihadist case, rather than as a tally of the various arrests associated with that cell. These figures are based on open- source data compiled and analyzed by the Majority Staff of the Homeland Security Committee.)