Muhammed Momtaz Al-Azhari - FBI via Patch screenshot
Florida Man Convicted of Supporting ISIS, Was Planning Attack in Tampa
- Muhammed Momtaz Al-Azhari, 26, from Tampa, Fla., pleaded guilty to attempting to provide material support or resources to ISIS.
- In 2020, Al-Azhari began to plan attacks in support of ISIS and acquired multiple firearms and scouting locations in the Tampa Bay area for potential targets.
- Al-Azhari and the United States have agreed to the imposition of a stipulated sentence of 18 years in federal prison. Read More
Facebook Creating ISIS Pages
According to a report by the Tech Transparency Project (TTP), Facebook's algorithm has automatically created over 100 pages for U.S.-designated terrorist groups, including ISIS and Al-Qaeda.
Some of the automatically generated pages have been living on Facebook for years, racking up likes and posts with terrorist propaganda and imagery. Read More
Alt-Right & Alt-Left Extremism
The Broadway play Parade opened for its second performance under the watchful eye of security and police after neo-Nazis harassed ticket holders - Andrew Lichtenstein/Corbis via Getty Images
Neo-Nazis Protest on Broadway
- Neo-Nazis protested outside the first preview of “Parade” on Broadway, chanting, holding antisemitic banners and passing out false information about the show's subject.
- The protesters held signs referring to the National Socialist Movement, one of the largest neo-Nazi groups in the U.S.
- The play is about the trial and lynching of Jewish man in Atlanta in 1915. Read More
Goyim Defense League Harasses Florida Jewish Community
- Antisemitic protesters from the Goyim Defense League (GDL) harassed Jewish people at the entrance of the Chabad House in Orlando, Fla.
- The GDL frequently engages in antisemitic stunts to troll and harass Jews, including showing up at Jewish events in a van marked with swastikas and shouting profanities.
- The GDL had recently moved its headquarters to Florida from California's Bay Area. Read More
Colorado Shooter Ran Neo-Nazi Site
- According to police, Anderson Lee Aldrich, 22, the suspected gunman accused of killing five people at an LGBT nightclub in Colorado Springs, Colo., ran a neo-Nazi website and used gay and racial slurs while gaming online.
- Aldrich, who identifies as nonbinary and uses the pronouns they and them, administered the obscure website called “freespeech2.ru” that included what has been described as a “neo-Nazi white supremacist” shooting training video glorifying mass shootings.
- Aldrich faces hate crime charges in addition to other charges, including murder and attempted murder. Read More
Tevin Grant - Broward County Sherrif’s Office, via NBC 6 South Florida screenshot
Man Arrested in Antisemitic Attack
- Tevin Grant, 28, of Dania Beach, Fla., was arrested after being caught on camera attacking a bicyclist and calling him an antisemitic slur.
- Grant was booked into jail and faces one count of aggravated assault. Read More
Man Charged With Hate Crime for Grocery Store Assault
- Eugene Thompson, 19, of Montgomery County, Md., was indicted on hate crime and robbery charges.
- Thompson allegedly knocked a victim unconscious and stole his keys at a Gaithersburg, Md., grocery store.
- According to the charging documents, Thompson put up his hands in a fighting stance and shouted, “Let’s go, f–ng Jew.” Read More
Jonathan Raa/NurPhoto via Getty Images
12-Year-Old Girl Arrested For Making School Threats on Snapchat
A 12-year-old Woodbridge, Va., girl was arrested and charged after police say she made threats toward Lake Ridge Middle School on Snapchat.
Investigators determined the threat to the school was not credible. No injuries were reported.
The girl is charged with threats of death or bodily injury and is being held at the juvenile detention center. Read More
Suspect in Utah High School Threat Identified
Police identified a suspect in a shooting threat at Roy High School in Roy, Utah.
Police said they were notified of a social media post circulating that said a shooting would occur at the school on Monday (Feb. 27). Read More
Multiple Colorado Schools Locked Down Following Threats
At least a dozen Colorado districts went on temporary lockdown or secure mode after receiving a spate of phone threats from unidentified sources.
The measures were lifted after police determined the threats were unfounded. Read More
Hostile Foreign Influence Operations
Photo by STR/NurPhoto via Getty Images
Russian Facebook Campaigns Becoming Less Successful
A quarterly threat report released by Meta said Russian disinformation campaigns have become less successful on Facebook.
Meta attributed this to new measures the company implemented at the beginning of the war limiting the reach of Russian state-sponsored media.
The report indicated that Russian state media outlets have been turning more to alternative platforms like Telegram and their own websites to spread their propaganda. Read More
New Bill to Stop Espionage in U.S. Universities Introduced
- The Stop Higher Education Espionage and Theft Act of 2023, H.R. 1146, introduced by U.S. Rep. Michelle Steel (R-CA), would direct the FBI to designate foreign intelligence threats to higher education in America and would empower the U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security to initiate removal proceedings against agents of such operations.
- Rep. Steel said, “This legislation will ensure any bad actors seeking to infiltrate academia to influence our youth and spy on sensitive research projects are quickly and decisively expelled.”
- If enacted, H.R. 1146 also would improve transparency by requiring disclosure of foreign gifts and contracts at institutions of higher education. Read More
Research and Trends in Extremism
Mayor Eric Adams speaks on the 30th anniversary of the Feb. 26, 1993 World Trade Center Attack - Lev Radin/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images
Study Examines Link Between Location of Terrorists and Risk of Terrorism
- The Office of Justice Programs’ National Institute of Justice (NIJ) has published an article summarizing an NIJ-supported study that examines where terrorists live and plan terrorist acts, in relation to where the acts occur. Read More
New ADL report on Extremism in the US
- A new report by the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism studies the number of U.S. mass killings linked to extremism over the past decade.
- In 2022, domestic extremists killed at least 25 people in the U.S., in 12 separate incidents.
- The ADL’s report claims over the past 12 years, most of the mass killings were committed by right-wing extremists, but left-wing and domestic Islamist extremists were also responsible for a number of assaults and fire-bombings. Read More
"If the fundamental principles in the Declaration of Independence, as self-evident truths, are real truths, the existence of slavery, in any form, is a wrong."
- John Quincy Adams
NOTE TO OUR READERS: We have pulled out the salient points of the articles in this newsletter to keep you informed and focused on the most relevant, important and timely news in national security and extremism. While our national security experts stand behind the summary bullets and deem them trustworthy, Clarion Project does not endorse all the views expressed in the articles linked.
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