How Many Terrorist Attacks in the U.S. Have Been Carried Out by Immigrants from the 7 Banned Muslim Countries?
On Friday, President Donald Trump signed a controversial executive order that suspended entry of all refugees to the United States for 120 days, barred Syrian refugees indefinitely, and blocked entry into the U.S. for 90 days for citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.
The ban has sparked outrage, fear and protests across America and the globe. Some have also called into question its legality, pointing to the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, which banned all discrimination against immigrants on the basis of national origin. On Saturday, federal judges in New York and Boston barred officials from deporting some refugees who found themselves affected by Trump’s order in the midst of traveling.
According to the order as supplied by the White House, the ban aims to “protect the American people from terrorist attacks by foreign nationals admitted to the United States.”
“Numerous foreign-born individuals have been convicted or implicated in terrorism-related crimes since September 11, 2001,” the order states. “The United States must be vigilant during the visa-issuance process to ensure that those approved for admission do not intend to harm Americans and that they have no ties to terrorism.”
According to the order, a waiver may be granted on a case-by-case basis by both the Department of State and the Department of Homeland Security and may be granted for those who are “a religious minority in his country of nationality facing religious persecution” as long as they don’t pose a security risk to the U.S. Before signing his executive order, Trump told the Christian Broadcasting Network that Christian refugees from Syria should be given priority treatment when entering the U.S. over Muslims.
According to the Washington Post and Bloomberg, Trump’s ban did not include any of the Muslim-majority countries where the Trump Organization — which is now being run by his sons — holds business interests. Those countries reportedly include Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Turkey, the U.A.E. and Azerbaijan.
Here’s a look back at the major terrorist attacks that have taken place on U.S. soil since 9/11, including the nationalities of the perpetrator, or perpetrators.
Of this list, zero fatal attacks were carried out by immigrants from the seven Muslim-majority countries targeted by the ban. Two attacks were carried out by individuals with ties to the seven countries: the 2006 UNC SUV attack, and the 2016 Ohio State University attack. Neither of those plots resulted in American deaths.
On Sept. 11, 2001, 19 militants hijacked four commercial airlines to carry out terrorist attacks on the U.S. that killed 2,996 people and wounded more than 6,000 others. The 19 men were associated with al-Qaeda, a decentralized terrorist network, at the time led by Osama bin Laden.
Of the 19 hijackers, 15 were from Saudi Arabia, two from the United Arab Emirates, one from Egypt and one from Lebanon.
2001 anthrax attacks:
Anonymous letters laced with deadly anthrax spores began arriving at media companies and congressional offices, killing five people and infecting 17 others. The FBI concluded Bruce Ivins, a top biodefense researcher, was the key suspect for the attacks, although he was never charged with any crime. Ivins was American.
2002 D.C. sniper attacks:
Over the course of three weeks in 2002, John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo killed 10 people and critically injured three others in Washington D.C., Baltimore, and Virginia.
Muhammad was born as John Allen Williams in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Malvo is from Jamaica.
2006 UNC SUV attack:
Mohammed Reza Taheri-aza intentionally rammed into people on the UNC Chapel Hill campus. Nine people were injured, none seriously. Taheri-aza was reportedly an Iranian-born U.S. citizen.
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2006 Seattle Capitol Hill massacre:
Kyle Aaron Huff opened fire in a rave afterparty in Seattle’s Capitol Hill, killing six and wounding two others. Huff was American, from Whitefish, Montana.
2006 Seattle Jewish Federation shooting:
2008 Knoxville Unitarian Universalist church shooting:
Jim David Adkisson killed two people and wounded seven others at the Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church in Knoxville, Tennessee. Adkisson was American.
2009 Arkansas recruiting office shooting:
Abdulhakim Mujahid Muhammad shot and killed one military recruiter and seriously wounded another at a Little Rock, Arkansas Army/Navy Career Center. Muhammad, previously known as Carlos Leon Bledsoe, was American.
2009 Fort Hood shooting:
Nidal Malik Hasan, a U.S. Army major and psychiatrist, fatally shot 13 people and injured more than 30 others in Fort Hood, Texas. Hasan was born in the U.S. to Palestinian parents.
2010 Austin suicide attack:
Andrew Joseph Stack III deliberately crashed his single engine plane into the Austin, Texas, IRS building, killing himself, one IRS employee and injuring 13 others. Stack was American.
2012 Wisconsin Sikh temple shooting:
Wade Michael Page fatally shot six people and wounded four others at a Sikh temple is Oak Creek, Wisconsin. Page, who was active in white supremacist groups, was an American.
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2013 Boston marathon bombing:
Double bombings near the finish line of the Boston marathon killed three people and injured at least 264. The perpetrators were brothers Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. According to FBI interrogators, the two were motivated by extremist Islamic beliefs, but were not connected to any known terrorist groups. Tamerlan was born in Russia but was a permanent resident of the U.S., while Dzhokhar was born in Kyrgyzstan and became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 2012. Both were ethnically Chechen.
2013 Los Angeles International Airport shooting:
Paul Anthony Ciancia opened fire at Terminal 3 in LAX, killing one and injuring several others. Ciancia is American and grew up in Pennsville, New Jersey.
2014 Overland Park Jewish Community Center shooting:
Frazier Glenn Miller, Jr., a neo-Nazi white supremacist, committed a pair of shootings at the Jewish Community Center in Overland Park, Kansas, killing a total of three people. Miller was American.
2014 Las Vegas shooting:
A married couple, Jerad and Amanda Miller, committed a shooting spree in Las Vegas, killing three people as well as themselves. Both were American and supported extreme anti-government views.
2014 Queens hatchet attack:
Zale H. Thompson attacked four New York City Police Department officers with a metal hatchet, injuring two. A civilian was also injured after police opened fire on Thompson. Thompson, who was American, was described by police officials as a self-radicalized Muslim convert who was inspired by terrorist groups.
2014 slayings of NYPD officers:
Ismaaiyl Abdullah Brinsley killed two on-duty NYPD officers, reportedly as revenge for the deaths of Eric Garner and Michael Brown. Brinsley was born in the U.S. to a Muslim African-American family.
2015 Charleston church shooting:
Dylann Roof killed nine people and injured one during a mass shooting at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in downtown Charleston, South Carolina. Roof, a white supremacist, is American and was sentenced to death on Jan. 10.
2015 Chattanooga shooting:
Muhammad Youssef Abdulazeez opened fire on two military installations in Chattanooga, Tennessee, killing four Marines and wounding two others. A fifth Marine died from his injuries two days later. Abdulazeez, a naturalized U.S. citizen, was born in Kuwait to Palestinian-Jordanian parents.
2015 Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood shooting:
Robert Lewis Dear, Jr. committed a mass shooting at a Colorado Springs Planned Parenthood clinic, killing three and injury nine others. Dear, who is American, was ruled incompetent to stand trial and was indefinitely confined to a Colorado state mental hospital.
2015 San Bernardino attack:
A married couple, Syed Rizwan Farook and Tashfeen Malik, killed 14 civilians and injured 22 others in a mass shooting at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, California. Farook was born in the U.S. to Pakistani parents, and Malik, who was a permanent U.S. resident, was born in Pakistan but grew up in Saudi Arabia.
2016 Orlando nightclub shooting:
Omar Mateen killed 49 people and wounded 53 in a mass shooting at the gay nightclub Pulse in Orlando, Florida. Mateen was an American born in the U.S. to Afghan parents.
2016 shooting of Dallas police officers: Micah Xavier Johnson ambushed a group of Dallas police officers, killing five and injuring nine others. Johnson, a former Army reservist, was an American.
2016 Minnesota mall stabbing:
Dahir A. Adan committed a mass stabbing at the Crossroads Center shopping mall in St. Cloud, Minnesota, injuring 10 people. Adan was born in Kenya and became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 2008.
2016 New York and New Jersey bombings:
Over the course of three days in September, three bombs exploded and several explosive devices were found in New Jersey and New York City, injuring at least 30 people. The alleged perpetrator was Ahmad Khan Rahimi, an Afghan-born U.S. citizen.
2016 Ohio State university attack:
Abdul Razal Ali Artan carried out an attack on the Ohio State University campus, injuring 13. Artan, a student of the university, was a Muslim Somali immigrant.
2017 Fort Lauderdale Airport attack:
A mass shooting occurred at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport near the baggage claim in Terminal 2 on Jan. 6. A total of five people were killed and six others were injured. Esteban Ruiz Santiago, the alleged shooter, was indicted on 22 counts by a federal grand jury on Thursday. Santiago is an American, born to Puerto Rican parents in New Jersey.