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FBI director warns of increase in domestic threat reports linked to Israel-Hamas war

FBI Director Christopher Wray warned of an increase in domestic threat reports amid Israel’s war with militant group Hamas.

“We’re particularly vigilant to the possibility that lone actors in the United States could in some way, out of inspiration, misguided inspiration that they draw from the conflict in the Middle East,” Wray said in an interview with Fox News.

Asked if anything is being done differently to ensure people’s safety, Wray said, “We’re constantly making sure that we have got the latest intelligence, that we’re looking at all the intelligence that’s available in the right way, testing our own assumptions, our own prior assessments, to make sure that we have anticipated any threats that can arise.”

Wray’s comments echoed his warning over the weekend, where he said there is “no question” that threats are on the rise.

“History has been witness to antisemitic and other forms of violent extremism for far too long. Whether that be from foreign terrorist organizations, or those inspired by them, or domestic violent extremists motivated by their own racial animus, the targeting of a community because of their faith is totally unacceptable,” Wray said Saturday in an address at the International Association of Chiefs of Police conference in San Diego.

Other officials have sounded similar warnings. New York City Mayor Eric Adams (D) warned city residents last week to beware of “lone wolves” in the immediate wake of the deadly attacks carried out by Hamas militants on Israel.

Fighting has raged in Israel and Gaza since Hamas, which is recognized as a terrorist group by the U.S., carried out a massacre that killed more than 1,400 people in Israel, including hundreds of civilians in their homes, at a bus stop, and at a music festival. At least 31 Americans are among those dead in Israel, the White House confirmed.

An Israeli spokesperson claimed 206 people are believed to have been taken hostage by Hamas, according to The Associated Press. U.S. officials have not confirmed the number of Americans believed to be taken hostage.

Israeli forces quickly responded last week with a bombardment of Gaza that has so far killed more than 3,400 Palestinians and injured more than 12,000, the Gaza Health Ministry reported Thursday.

The humanitarian crisis in Gaza deepened last week following Israel’s siege on food, water, electricity and medicine, forcing hundreds of thousands of Palestinians out of their homes and into shelters.

Israel ordered the evacuation of more than 1.1 million Palestinians last week to travel to the southern half of the Gaza Strip last week ahead of an anticipated ground assault. However, many people in Gaza lack the ability to travel south, and Hamas has told residents not to leave and to stay in their homes.

Trucks with aid waited for days at the Rafah crossing — Gaza’s only connection to Egypt— which shut down last week in the wake of Israeli airstrikes.

President Biden visited Tel Aviv this week to meet with Israeli leaders and families impacted by the ongoing violence and reiterate the U.S.’s support for Jerusalem.

While there, Biden announced an agreement to allow humanitarian aid to move from Egypt to Gaza and confirmed the U.S. will fund $100 million to assist those living in Gaza and the West Bank.

Source: The Hill

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