News reports: Islamic State identifies 100 US troops, urges followers to kill them
WASHINGTON — Islamic State extremists have called on followers in the United States to kill 100 U.S. servicemembers whose purported names, photos and addresses were posted on a website, media reports said Saturday.
Several U.S. media organizations, including The New York Times, the New York Daily News and the Reuters news agency, said the Islamic State claimed the 100 servicemembers – from the Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps – had taken part in attacks on Islamic State targets in Iraq, Syria, Yemen, Somalia and Afghanistan.
“You crusaders that fight the Islamic State, we say to you: ‘Die in your rage!’” the posting said, according to the Daily News account.
The news reports quoted an unidentified Pentagon official as saying the Defense Department was aware of the posting and “we are looking into it.” The official would not say whether the names, photos and addresses were valid.
The New York Times said the FBI had been called in to take part in the investigation along with Pentagon investigators. ABC News said the military services were notifying the families of the 100 people named in the list.
U.S. officials have been concerned about terror threats against servicemembers and their families since the sharp rise in terrorist operations in the wake of last year’s offensive by the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq.
The latest threat was posted online by the “Islamic State Hacking Division,” the news reports said. A statement in English claimed to have hacked military servers, databases and emails to gather information on specific servicemembers who could be targeted by “lone wolf” attackers in U.S. “Kill them in their own lands, behead them in their own homes, stab them to death as they walk their streets thinking they are safe,” the Daily News quoted the posting as saying.
ABC News quoted a Marine Corps spokesman, L. John Caldwell, as saying the Naval Criminal Investigative Service was conducting in-person notifications of Navy and Marine personnel on the list.
"It is recommended Marines and family members check their online/social footprint ensuring privacy settings are adjusted to limit the amount of available personal information," Caldwell said, according to ABC News.