Well then, that’s gotta make you feel safe……
It’s “understandable” that Americans are worried about terrorism, and they may even discuss the threat at the holiday dinner table, President Obama said on Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving.
“The bottom line is this: I want the American people to know, entering the holidays, that the combined resources of our military, our intelligence and our homeland security agencies are on the case.”
“In the event of a specific credible threat, the public will be informed,” the president promised.
“We do think it’s useful for people as they’re going about their business to be vigilant. If you see something suspicious, say something. That’s always helpful. But otherwise, Americans should go about their usual Thanksgiving activities.”
President Obama made the formal, unscheduled statement at the White House following a briefing by his national security team.
He talked about “stepping up the pressure” on Islamic State terrorists, whose attacks in Paris have all of Europe on high alert. He talked about the 8000-plus coalition airstrikes on ISIL; choking off the group’s financing and supply lines; boosting coordination with the French; and “doing everything possible” to prevent foreign fighters from entering the U.S.
“I know that Americans have been asking each other whether it’s safe here — whether it’s safe to fly or gather. I know that families have discussed their fears about the threat of terrorism around the dinner table, many for the first time since Sept. 11.
“And it’s understandable people worry that something could happen here.
Obama assured Americans that while they “travel this weekend to be with their loved ones, his counterterrorism, intelligence, homeland securety and law enforcement professionals “are working overtime.”
“They are continually monitoring threats at home and abroad; continually evaluating our security posture.”
He said there are no specific, credible threats at the moment.
Speaking Sunday in Malaysia, President Obama said he will “do everything we can to destroy” Islamic State terrorists, whom he described as “a bunch of killers with good social media.”
He also urged the American people not to “fear” the group that is responsible for murderous violence well beyond the Middle East, most recently in Paris.
“We do not succumb to fear,” Obama said in Malaysia. “The most powerful tool we have to fight ISIL is to say that we’re not afraid, to not elevate them, to somehow buy into their fantasy that they’re doing something important.”
But on Monday, shortly after the president returned to the United States, Obama’s State Department issued a worldwide travel alert for Americans.
“U.S. citizens should exercise vigilance when in public places or using transportation,” the alert said. “Be aware of immediate surroundings and avoid large crowds or crowded places. Exercise particular caution during the holiday season and at holiday festivals or events.”