A Center for Security Policy expert urges Americans to maintain vigilance during the upcoming Fourth of July celebrations as the holiday falls on the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, a period when martyrdom and jihad are especially valued and encouraged by radical Islamic extremists.
“One thing that makes July Fourth significant… is not so much that it is an Independence Day holiday for us, but rather that there are attractive targets coming out during that period: You’ve got people getting together, you’ve got parades, you’ve got soft targets in [music] concerts,” explained Kyle Shideler, director of the Threat Information Office (TIO) at the Center for Security Policy, during a conference call seminar hosted by The Endowment for Middle East Truth.
The fact that there are “more potential targets” during the holiday makes it “attractive” to jihadists during Ramadan, he continued.
Shideler acknowledged that it “is very common” for terrorist organizations like the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) to intensify their calls for Muslims to engage in jihad and become martyrs during Ramadan.
This year is no different.
Echoing its Ramadan message from 2015, ISIS recently encouraged Muslims to carry out violent attacks against civilian and military targets in the United States “to win the great award of martyrdom” during the holy month.