You might think either of these to be the case, given how little the media—particularly the U.S. media—seems to make of it anymore. Arrests of terror cells, the disruptions of plans of attack, shootings and stabbings, particularly in Europe, all go little reported and are frequently entirely ignored these days by the U.S. press.
But that doesn’t mean they aren’t happening or that the threat is anywhere near over. As Christine Abizaid, director of the National Counterterrorism Center in Washington, D.C., told the Washington Institute in January, “Despite significant progress in diminishing the terrorist threat to the United States, the country continues to face a diversified, transnational and in many ways unpredictable threat environment both at home and abroad.
Indeed, the first jihadist attack of 2023 took place in New York’s Times Square on New Year’s Eve, when Muslim convert Trevor Bickford attacked three police officers with a machete. And that was just the beginning.
Meanwhile, fundraising for terrorist groups has shown no signs of slowdown. In April, the U.S. Justice Department unsealed an indictment of Belgian-Lebanese art and diamond dealer Nazem Ahmed and seven others, charging them in absentia with a vast, complex scheme involving art, diamond and real estate deals that funneled over $160 million to Hezbollah.
This last case is of particular concern. Escapees from the camps have long been considered a significant threat, especially to Europe, where authorities continue to wrestle with the options of either allowing repatriation of nationals who left to join the Islamic State or risking still-radicalized ISIS members breaking free from the camps and slipping back into Europe unnoticed, able to move and act freely
There is, however, some good news in all this: Thanks to ever-improving intel, far more terror plans are being thwarted than carried out, keeping law enforcement, at least for now, ahead of the game.
Produced in association with Jewish News Syndicate
Edited by Asad Ali and Saba Fatima