Former FBI deputy for counterintelligence, Frank Figliuzzi, addressed the Homeland Security bulletin issued Wednesday warning of possible continued terrorism from violent anti-government extremists like the ones who attacked the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6. Speaking to MSNBC’s Nicolle Wallace, Figliuzzi began with positive news that this is a bulletin not an alert, which means there’s nothing specifically planned soon.
The alert said that there have been increasing threats for the past year from violent domestic extremists motivated by COVID-19 lockdowns and mask mandates.
“Here is the bad news,” he continued. “This reflects a discovery of deeply entrenched radicalization in our society. As the agents are going through and arresting and executing search warrants against the insurrectionists, they’re likely to discover evidence of bigger planning, a deeper sense of organization than they could have imagined. I know personally from my own observations that the chatter is continuing almost unabated, but this advisory is not only about what they know about what might happen, but it’s also a fear of what they’re not seeing.”
The example he used was that many of these people are moving to use encrypted platforms that law enforcement officials can’t see or monitor.
“That’s a blind spot for them,” he explained. “The other thing, this isn’t just partnering with law enforcement. One, yeah, let’s put national law enforcement on notice, the highway patrol officer who pulls someone over who yaks about hutting somebody in D.C., but it’s also, if you see something, say something. We need that kind of posture as we had after 9/11.”
Wallace asked about the bulletin itself, wondering since it has been going on for a year if law enforcement would have found it helpful to have the bulletin sooner.
“My sense, my gut, my experience tells me that when we heard the FBI say that we gave intelligence concerns about violence to the Capitol Police, the Capitol region,” said Figliuzzi. “When we hear the Capitol Police produce their own intelligence report, that was even more troubling, and we saw the posture and presence we saw. My gut tells me someone was pulling those strings, and someone said, ‘don’t issue the warnings, don’t get the posture up, don’t scare people, don’t interfere with what we have.’ We need a truly independent commission to get us those answers.”
See the discussion below: