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Homeland Security News

A collection of open-source homeland security and terrorism news from around the world.
Date: Nov 24, 2021

A NSW man has been charged with using social media platforms to advocate acts of terrorism and violence against prominent Australian politicians.

It's alleged Wade Homewood, 37, was a prolific user of social media and posted a large volume of extremist content, urging violence against people he singled out for their race, occupation or political viewpoints.

The ABC understands that the Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, and Victorian Premier, Dan Andrews, were among those targeted.

The NSW Police Joint Counter Terrorism team began investigating in September after identifying a number of potentially criminal posts.

Mr Homewood lives with his parents in Tamworth, where he works as an occasional farmhand on the family farm.

Read more: ABC News (Australia)

Australia on Wednesday classified neo-Nazi organisation The Base and Hezbollah, the Lebanese Shia Islamist political party and militant group, as terrorist organisations.

The classification makes it illegal for anyone to be a member of The Base, the white supremacist group formed in 2018, or Hezbollah. Anyone convicted of being a member can be imprisoned for up to 25 years.

"There is absolutely no place in Australia for violent extremism. There is no cause – religious or ideological – that can justify killing innocent people," Minister for Home Affairs Karen Andrews told reporters in Canberra.

Hezbollah is not believed to be active in Australia, though authorities have said The Base has actively sought to develop cells.

Read more: Reuters

It was early Thanksgiving morning, before daylight. 1971.

Across the country, families were in bed asleep, dreaming of the food and festivities that the next morning would bring. The case was no different for Reverend J.D. Jackson’s family in Rochester, NY — at first.

Then the call came.

Rev. Jackson answered the phone. Mt. Vernon Baptist Church at 351 Joseph Avenue — the church he pastored — had been bombed. 

"He said to me, 'I have to go to church. The church has been bombed,'" his wife, Josetta Jackson, remembered, 50 years later.

She refused to let her husband go alone, not knowing what would be waiting for him. She got their children, ages 4 and 5, together carrying along their bed pillows. She loaded them into the car and the family headed to the church.

There was a swarm of police cars and fire trucks. An officer stopped the family and, after identifying him, told Rev. Jackson that he would have to get into a police car to ride further and see the damage. He had to leave his wife and children in their car, nervously waiting.

Read more: Rochester Democrat & Chronicle

Police have said that seven suspects were killed and 106 people detained during operations by the security services linked to three suicide bombings in the Ugandan capital, Kampala, last week.

ISIL (ISIS) claimed responsibility for the November 16 attack, which killed seven people, including the three bombers, and injured dozens more. One police officer was among the four others killed and 27 of the 37 wounded were also police officers.

“To disrupt and dismantle acts of domestic terrorism, we have intensified operations. Since these operations began, a total of 106 suspects have been arrested,” police spokesperson Fred Enanga said in a statement posted on Facebook on Monday.

Police did not provide details on how the seven suspects were killed.

Read more: Al Jazeera

Nine people injured during the 2017 "Unite the Right" rally in downtown Charlottesville, Virginia, are entitled to more than $25 million in financial compensation, a jury declared Tuesday in reaching a partial verdict. But it could not agree on the most serious claims that the defendants — about two dozen white supremacists, neo-Nazis and key organizers — engaged in a conspiracy to commit violence under federal law.

The jury of 11 deliberated for more than three days following four weeks of testimony in the civil trial in a federal court in Charlottesville. The plaintiffs, all from Charlottesville, described broken bones, the bloodshed and emotional trauma resulting from the mayhem. The defendants, some self-described racists and white nationalists, argued they were exercising their First Amendment rights in organizing and participating in the rally.

The case, known as Sines v. Kessler, was the first major lawsuit in years to be tried under the so-called Ku Klux Klan Act, a rarely used federal law codified after the Civil War. It was installed to diminish the power of white supremacists and protect African Americans, prohibiting discrimination in voting and other rights.

Read more: NBC News