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U.S. security officials address rising global terror threats in House committee hearing

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas (left) and FBI Director Christopher Wray (right) before the House Committee on Homeland Security Associated Press/Photo by Jacquelyn Martin

U.S. security officials address rising global terror threats in House committee hearing

Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas spoke at a House hearing by the Committee on Homeland Security on Wednesday. He described a dangerous spike in anti-Semitism since the war in Gaza began, adding to a “pre-existing increase” in anti-Semitism domestically and internationally. FBI Director Christopher Wray also testified and named Islamic terror groups as one of the most significant international safety threats. Wray described direct threats and calls for attacks on American citizens and interests by ISIS, Al Qaeda, and Hezbollah. He also noted that the attacks in Gaza may inspire more domestic terrorist attacks, echoing his testimony to the Senate Committee on Homeland Security Governmental Affairs last month.

What other threats were discussed? Mayorkas and Wray discussed the fentanyl crisis and poor border security. Wray also discussed the mounting issues of deepfake AI technology and cyberattacks by China and Iran. Mayorkas pressed Congress to approve an $8.7 billion funding request from DHS, which he described as making a “critical difference” in the department’s ability to keep Americans safe. Wray also petitioned lawmakers to reauthorize Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which Wray likened to one of many tools in the government’s “toolkit against foreign adversaries” to prevent terror attacks domestically and internationally. 

Dig deeper: Read Emma Freire’s report in WORLD Magazine on the post-9/11 FBI.

Christina Grube

Christina Grube is a graduate of the World Journalism Institute.

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