US faces heightened threat of politically-motivated violence from Trump supporters, DHS warns
The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has warned that the country faces a growing threat of politically-motivated domestic violence from people angry at former President Donald Trump’s election loss.
The DHS said publicly for the first time on Wednesday that the nation still faces a heightened threat of domestic extremist violence after the deadly storming of the US Capitol on January 6.
The department, in a national terrorism advisory, did not specify a group that might mastermind any future attack, but made it clear that their motivation would include anger over “the presidential transition, as well as other perceived grievances fueled by false narratives.”
The advisory made a clear reference to Trump’s allegations that his election loss came as a result of widespread voter fraud.
Trump spent two months peddling the accusations and finally urged a crowd of his supporters to “fight like hell…to take back our county” in a fiery speech that led to the siege at congress building.
The DHS said it “is concerned these same drivers to violence will remain through early 2021.”
The alert also warned about the potential for violence from “a broad range of ideologically-motivated actors.”
The advisory said that the department does not have information indicating a “specific, credible plot,” however.
An intelligence official involved in drafting the bulletin also said that “the intent to engage in violence has not gone away.”
The official said that the decision to issue such a warning was driven by the DHS’ conclusion that President Joe Biden’s peaceful inauguration last week could create a false sense of security.
Biden took the oath of office under heavy security, with more than 20,000 National Guard troops on duty.
The DHS issued the alert as the department itself is accused of being reluctant during the Trump administration to publish intelligence reports or public warnings about the dangers posed by domestic extremists and white supremacist groups for fear of angering the former president, according to current and former homeland security officials.