(Photo by Stefan Zaklin/Getty Images)
UPDATED 7:45 PM PT – Thursday, January 14, 2021
The greatest domestic terrorism threat of 2021 is announced to be anti-government extremists.
The FBI, Department of Homeland Security and National Counterterrorism Center made that announcement Wednesday.
In a statement, the agencies said:
“In 2021, threats and plotting of illegal activity — including destruction of property and violence targeting officials at all levels of the government., law enforcement… journalists and infrastructure, as well as sporadic violence surrounding lawful protests, rallies, demonstrations, and other gatherings by domestic violent extremists will very likely increase.”
They attribute the unrest to coronavirus restrictions, socio-political conditions and perceived government overreach. They also said the storming of the Capitol on January 6 “will likely drive a range of domestic violent extremists for months to come.”
As of now, however, federal and state officials said they’re just looking to get through Inauguration Day.
“I’m not going to go into any details about the measures that we either have taken or are taking,” Gov. Tate Reeves (R-Miss.) said. “But I can assure you that I have personally communicated with Commissioner Tindell, General Bowles, our Emergency Management Team and whether you see us or not, we are going to protect the integrity of our government buildings.”
In Ohio, the governor has ordered the statehouse and other government buildings to close until after the transition.
“The sad truth is that there are people in our country who want to turn peaceful protests into opportunities for violence,” Gov. Mike Dewine (R-Ohio) stated. “These are violent people and their violence will not be tolerated in Ohio and it will not be tolerated anywhere.”
Moving forward, legislatures in states like Texas and Mississippi are boosting security measures and urging lawmakers to temporarily work from home.
Meanwhile, the National Guard is being activated in states across the country as the FBI expects protests in all 50 states as a response to the inauguration.