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Terrorism News

A collection of open-source terrorism news from around the world.
Keyword: worldwide terrorism threats & domestic extremist threats & trends

FBI Director James Comey said on Wednesday that last week's shooting of a Philadelphia police officer was being investigated as "a terrorist attack." FBI officials told CBS News while investigators have not concluded the Jan. 7 shooting was an act of terrorism, the shooting is being handled as a terrorism investigation.

Late last Thursday, police said Edward Archer approached Officer Jesse Hartnett's patrol car and fired a hail of bullets at close range. Despite being seriously wounded, Hartnett got out of his car, chased the suspect and returned fire, wounding his attacker in the buttocks, police said. Other officers chased Archer and apprehended him about a block away.  Hartnett, 33, was shot three times in the arm and will require multiple surgeries.

According to police, Archer confessed to the shooting and told investigators he was following Allah, and had pledged his allegiance to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS. Archer said he believed the police department defends laws that are contrary to Islam, police said.

Read more: CBS News

Federal authorities say a New York man has been arrested on charges he was planning a New Year's Eve attack at a bar to prove to the Islamic State he was worthy to join it in Syria.  Prosecutors announced Thursday that 25-year-old Emanuel Lutchman, of Rochester, has been charged with attempting to provide material support to terrorists. They say he was snared in an FBI sting.

A federal complaint says Lutchman is a self-professed convert to Islam who claimed to receive direction from an overseas Islamic State member and planned to carry out an attack at a bar in the Rochester area on Thursday.  The FBI says Lutchman had an accomplice who was actually working for the agency. It says they bought knives and a machete for the attack.

Lutchman was arrested Wednesday. It's not immediately clear who represented him at an initial court appearance.

Read more: ABC News

Four years before he launched the San Bernardino massacre, Syed Rizwan Farook and his friend Enrique Marquez hatched an elaborate plot to attack Riverside City College and the 91 Freeway, according to charges filed Thursday by federal prosecutors. Farook and Marquez, prosecutors alleged, had purchased weapons and explosives for the attacks.

Here's what authorities say they planned to do, based on the complaint filed against Marquez in Riverside federal court on Thursday. The records show the pair planned to throw pipe bombs into the college cafeteria area from an "elevated position on the second floor."

Read more: LA Times

In a clear sign that al Qaeda is losing the ideological battle with ISIS, online forums once aligned with al Qaeda — including Osama bin Laden's favorite chat room — have switched allegiance to the more violent Islamic State, experts say.  The trend is one of several "metrics" indicating al Qaeda has been stung by losses in leadership and prestige and is losing the internal war for loyalty among the most radical Islamists, say both terrorism experts and U.S. government officials, who've seen al Qaeda operatives shift loyalties, as well.

Evan Kohlmann of Flashpoint Intelligence, an NBC terrorism analyst, said there are 10 or fewer terrorist forums where the most battle-hardened jihadis gather, and the chat rooms have rigorous controls on who can post. Only one of these terrorist forums, according to Kohlmann, remains loyal to al Qaeda and its affiliates.

Read more:  NBC News

The Pennsylvania State Police have charged a 76-year-old Maryland man with phoning in bomb threats to First National Bank branches in two western Pennsylvania counties.  Horace James of Dundalk, Maryland, has been charged with felony counts of making bomb threats and terroristic threats, and misdemeanor harassment charges, for the June 16 calls.

Police say James called on June 16 demanding a $500 million loan and complaining that the bank was stealing his money and gold before telling employees he planted bombs in the banks days before.  First National branches in Brownsville, Fayette County, and six branches in Hermitage and other parts of Mercer County, were closed due to the threats. No bombs were found.

Source:  CBS Baltimore