80 Islamist Terrorist Plots: The U.S. Needs to Redouble Its Counterterrorism Efforts

It is less than a month into 2016, and two terrorist plots have occurred, one foiled and the other successful. Additional information has become available regarding a case from December 2015, resulting in another addition to The Heritage Foundation’s list of terrorist plots and attacks. The FBI’s release of more information in December about the shooting at two Chattanooga military facilities in July 2015 also adds to the list, bringing the total number of Islamist-inspired terrorist plots and attacks against the U.S. since 9/11 to 80.

With these additions, the number of terrorist plots and attacks in 2015 reaches 15, well more than any year since 9/11 and more than 2012, 2013, and 2014 combined. And there already have been two terrorist plots in 2016. Of the 80 plots since 9/11, 69 have involved individuals radicalized inside the U.S.: so-called homegrown terrorists. Of the 80 total plots, the shooting of Officer Hartnett brings the total number of successful attacks to nine. Congress and the Administration should: Support stronger action against Islamist terrorist groups, maintain essential counterterrorism tools, streamline U.S. fusion centers, Stem the flow of fighters into Syria and Iraq.

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