President Barack Obama delivered a statement on Wednesday reassuring American citizens that the states are safe for holiday travel and authorities have been upgrading security at airports.
Being briefed previously in the Situation Room with his national security advisers, Obama spoke from the Roosevelt Room of the White House on matters of homeland security and said Americans are safe.
According to Reuters, Obama stated “Right now, we know of no specific and credible intelligence indicating a plot on the homeland. We are taking every possible step to keep our homeland safe.” The statement comes in time where many Americans are frightened of the United States being attacked by the Islamic State extremist forces, two weeks after the deadly terrorist attacks in Paris, France.
According to the latest Reuters/Ipsos poll about what is the most important problem that the nation is facing, many Americans have said that terrorism is the leading threat, especially since the Paris attacks.
Obama also stated “I know that families have discussed their fears about the threat of terrorism around the dinner table, many for the first time since September 11th. “ He added that every American citizen should “go about their usual Thanksgiving weekend activities, while remaining vigilant to any suspicious activities.”
President Obama’s message was reiterated by his administration’s Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson who, according to Reuters, stated “It should be obvious to the public that there is a heightened presence of law enforcement officers at train stations, airports and other public places. We are working overtime to protect the homeland.”
New York City is also holding the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade and the city will be getting more officers at the event than ever before. A lot of people are expected to visit the Macy’s parade and that is why many city officials have been making public appearances in the previous days in order to reassure New Yorkers and tourists that it is safe to travel and gather in large crowds.
New York City’s Major Bill de Blasio agreed with President Obama that Americans should go about their usual activities and do not worry about travelling. He stated “One thing I always say, there are some people trying to intimidate New Yorkers. Well, New Yorkers don’t get intimidated. They’ll be out tomorrow in droves.”
The Macy’s annual parade in New York is expected to see 3.5 million people to line in the 2.5 miles route.