(RepublicanInformer.com)- The intelligence community is being warned about possible attacks from domestic extremists that could target many energy sites throughout the U.S.
Newsweek recently obtained a copy of a memo sent by the Department of Homeland Security that is warning agencies that groups of domestic extremists could soon target electricity infrastructure within the U.S.
The memo, sent on January 24, said some members of these groups subscribe to racially-charged ideologies and may even be organized into militias that are armed.
The report was initially conducted by the Office of Intelligence and Analysis, and was done in response “to request from electric sector security partners to assess the physical threat environment following increased domestic violent extremist (DVE) activity in 2020 and 2021.”
In bold, the memo stated:
“DVEs adhering to a range of ideologies will likely continue to plot and encourage physical attacks against electrical infrastructure.
“DVEs have developed credible, specific plans to attack electricity infrastructure since at least 2020, identifying the electric grid as a particularly attractive target given its interdependency with other infrastructure sectors.
“Absent significant technical knowledge or insider assistance, small-scale attacks are unlikely to cause widespread, multi-state power loss but may result in physical damage that poses risks to operations or personnel, according to a body of DHS and open source reporting.”
The report cited past examples of groups who were believed to be readying for a “wreak havoc” event in case they were unhappy with how the 2020 presidential election turned out.
One instance cited was a group “of potential racially or ethnically motivated violent extremists (RMVEs)” that were believed to be targeting power stations throughout the southeastern section of the U.S.
In October of 2020, four people labeled as white supremacist RMVEs were charged in a conspiracy case where they were allegedly going to damage various transformers in Idaho and some other surrounding states.
Later that year, in May, three more people alleged to be MVEs were charged for their role in plotting a suspected attack on a Las Vegas electric substation. The report says that attack was “part of an attempt to incite riots and violence amid ongoing lawful demonstrations in the city.”
Over the last few years, law enforcement agencies have gotten better at identifying these groups and then closely watching their activities to prevent massive attacks. But, at the same time, these groups have become better at avoiding the surveillance that’s being put in place to track them.
As the memo stated:
“We assess that DVE use of encrypted messaging platforms and simple tactics associated with few indicators of suspicious activity will likely render these attacks difficult to attack.
“Online narratives over the last year have featured various attempts to inspire individuals with little or no training to target electricity infrastructure using simple tactics such as firearms, improvised incendiary devices (IIDs), and even common tools like hammers and power saws, according to DHS reporting.
“This media probably serves a dual purpose, providing guidance for untrained individuals to carry out successful attacks while avoiding detection, based on our review of recent law enforcement, government, and media reporting.”