(TheProudRepublic.com) – Presenting a grim assessment of our country’s security under the Biden-Harris administration, FBI Director Christopher Wray indicated to the Senate Judiciary Committee that the threat of terrorism in the United States has escalated to unprecedented levels.
During the session, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) inquired about the current state of national security threats, to which Wray responded with concern, noting the simultaneous elevation of multiple threats.
Wray characterized the situation as one where warning signals are omnipresent, akin to the pre-9/11 era. He emphasized the gravity of the situation, stating, “I’ve never seen a time where all the threats or so many of the threats are all elevated, all at exactly the same time.” He elaborated on the heightened vigilance required due to the increased calls for attacks by foreign terrorist organizations since the October 7 attack.
The discussion also highlighted the alarming rise in hate crimes, particularly antisemitic incidents. Wray cited FBI statistics that demonstrate a disproportionate impact on Jewish Americans, who, despite being a small percentage of the U.S. population, are the targets of a significant majority of religious-based hate crimes.
A critical component of the FBI’s strategy to mitigate these threats is reauthorizing Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. Wray advocated for this, emphasizing its crucial role in detecting and preventing terror attacks.
Section 702 allows for intelligence gathering on foreign nationals using U.S.-based communication services without a warrant, which can also impact Americans communicating with overseas contacts. The impending expiration of this statute by the year’s end raises concerns about national security and the effectiveness of counterterrorism efforts.
Wray cautioned against the lapse of Section 702, citing the potential risks to national security and the FBI’s capacity to counter cyber and terrorism threats. He posed a rhetorical question regarding accountability to potential victims’ families if an attack that could have been prevented occurs due to the discontinuation of this surveillance tool.
The debate on reauthorizing this surveillance mechanism is ongoing in Congress, with the House Judiciary Committee considering legislation that might introduce a warrant requirement, reflecting the balance between national security needs and civil rights concerns.