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by
Bridget Johnson

Bio

August 2, 2013 - 9:39 am

The State Department updated its worldwide caution alert today to incorporate new intelligence about a potential looming threat from al-Qaeda.

“The Department of State alerts U.S. citizens to the continued potential for terrorist attacks, particularly in the Middle East and North Africa, and possibly occurring in or emanating from the Arabian Peninsula. Current information suggests that al-Qa’ida and affiliated organizations continue to plan terrorist attacks both in the region and beyond, and that they may focus efforts to conduct attacks in the period between now and the end of August,” states the alert, which is good through the end of the month.

“Terrorists may elect to use a variety of means and weapons and target both official and private interests. U.S. citizens are reminded of the potential for terrorists to attack public transportation systems and other tourist infrastructure. Terrorists have targeted and attacked subway and rail systems, as well as aviation and maritime services. U.S. citizens should take every precaution to be aware of their surroundings and to adopt appropriate safety measures to protect themselves when traveling,” it continues.

“We continue to work closely with other nations on the threat from international terrorism, including from al-Qa’ida. Information is routinely shared between the U.S. and our key partners in order to disrupt terrorist plotting, identify and take action against potential operatives, and strengthen our defenses against potential threats.”

This alert is on top of the worldwide caution the State Department continually updates for travelers, and comes after the announcement that U.S. embassies across the Middle East and North Africa would temporarily close Sunday.

It also comes less than two weeks after al-Qaeda affiliate al-Shabaab claimed to have killed a veteran CIA official in a suicide bombing that hit an African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) convoy in Mogadishu.

President Obama has been steadily keeping on his “al-Qaeda is on the run” message from the campaign trail, asserting that the terror group’s capability has been severely degraded.

In a May speech at the National Defense University, Obama was eager to first link Islamic terrorism solely to al-Qaeda, distance al-Qaeda from known active affiliates, then distance al-Qaeda from all recent attacks.

“Today, the core of al-Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan is on a path to defeat. Their remaining operatives spend more time thinking about their own safety than plotting against us. They did not direct the attacks in Benghazi or Boston. They have not carried out a successful attack on our homeland since 9/11,” he said, calling the threat “more diffuse” with al-Qaeda affiliates such as al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

He segmented Benghazi and the attack on the BP oil facility in Algeria as “localized threats…in which local operatives – in loose affiliation with regional networks – launch periodic attacks against Western diplomats, companies, and other soft targets, or resort to kidnapping and other criminal enterprises to fund their operations.”

“We face a real threat from radicalized individuals here in the United States,” Obama continued. “Whether it’s a shooter at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin, a plane flying into a building in Texas, or the extremists who killed 168 people at the Federal Building in Oklahoma City, America has confronted many forms of violent extremism in our history.”

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.

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Top Rated Comments   
Either State is worried about another Benghazi or this administration is deploying this scare as another of their smoke screens to deflect the growing curiosity over Benghazi - the IRS - the NSA - and other scandals that is getting in the way of their real narrative. Whatever that really is - seems they have no real message - just the lock-step march towards tyranny. And there certainly is no narrative with that march. Can't have the American people know with a certainty of where we are headed. So the prez goes out and talks about jobs - but hey Mr. Prez - isn't' that what the $800B 'stimulus' was for? What happened to all that money? I certainly wasn't 'stimulated'.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
All Comments   (12)
All Comments   (12)
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I'll be interested to see if a cache of SAMs pilfered from the CIA's weapons flea-market in Benghazi will be used against other American embassies during this "heating up" of Al Qaeda activity...
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
The State Department is just being cautious about potential disgruntled movie critics after the release of Smurfs 2.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Either State is worried about another Benghazi or this administration is deploying this scare as another of their smoke screens to deflect the growing curiosity over Benghazi - the IRS - the NSA - and other scandals that is getting in the way of their real narrative. Whatever that really is - seems they have no real message - just the lock-step march towards tyranny. And there certainly is no narrative with that march. Can't have the American people know with a certainty of where we are headed. So the prez goes out and talks about jobs - but hey Mr. Prez - isn't' that what the $800B 'stimulus' was for? What happened to all that money? I certainly wasn't 'stimulated'.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
I think the State is genuinely worried. The govt of Iraq also declared Sunday as a holiday "due to the extreme heat", but its only 108F in a country that sees 120F during the summer so I'm not buying that. If its any comfort, I now know that the US isnt the only country to lie to it's citizens and I know that the US tells more sophisticated lies
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"State" is worried about the their collusion with the Muslim Brotherhood/Al Qaeda. The MB are the ones that we need to ferret out of the U.S.A.; because they in fact, ARE the parents and funders of AQ. Obama's MO is to effectively deflect attention from his association with the MB .... ... that's also a large part of Benghazi; aside from arms-running. We have the MB running Obama's foreign policy.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
NATO stabbed the Muslim Brotherhood in the back in Syria, and now moon god worshipers will attack MATO interests across region 4 of the WTO. Known as Arab spring land.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
More attacks by angry Muslims? What happened, did someone upload another video?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
ABC News reported, ""While next week will mark the Muslim holiday of Eid, and the end of Ramadan, a U.S. official declined to draw any connection between the security threat and the Muslim holy calendar." Hope this doesn't put a damper on the President's Eid dinner plans.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
So:

DETROID IS DEAD AND al QAEDA IS ALIVE

Take THAT, "Plugs" Biden!
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
DETROID?

Can we PLEASE put an "edit" button on this comment tool? Do NOT tell me you can't, because "Instapundit" is now using the SAME tool, and his has an edit function. Why no standardization?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Didn't Obama tell us the war on terror was over? I guess the terrorists didn't get the memo.

Until the attacking side agrees, the war is not over.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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