The Agricultural Community is a definite area of vulnerability in our state. An attack against food production, processing or distribution would be devastating to our economy and our way of life. We must do everything in our power to protect it.
Since 9/11/2001, terrorism has filled the news and become a concern to us all. Domestic Terrorism (based in the U.S. and executed by our own citizens) and International Terrorism (connected to foreign governments or groups and transcending our national borders) are the FBI’s highest priority and most important responsibility. The FBI also has the primary responsibility for investigating terrorism matters. Working with local, state and other federal agencies, we are dedicated to preventing future attacks against our citizens and our interests.
As members of one of the largest agricultural communities in the country, your assistance is needed in preventing terrorist acts. You can become familiar with certain activities that can indicate terrorist planning. Examples of these are:
Terrorists are known to observe a target before they take any action. Have you seen anyone recording or monitoring activities around any of your facilities? These would include anyone taking notes, using maps, cameras or binoculars. Also be aware of people who do not appear to belong in the area or who are acting suspiciously.
Along with surveillance, terrorists may also try to question you or your employees about your facility or your procedures. They may try to gain information concerning chemicals you use or where dangerous items are stored. This questioning could be in person, by telephone or E-Mail. They can gain significant information by simply asking questions.
Be aware you could be approached as a source for explosives, high nitrogen content fertilizer, sprayers, dangerous chemicals, pesticides and herbicides. Legitimate suppliers of these items have been instructed to contact the FBI if suspicious persons attempt to obtain these items without verifiable need, so the terrorist may go to the end user in an attempt to acquire
Planning and Preparation
A terrorist attack will most likely involve extensive planning and preparation. Materials may have to be stockpiled for their intended use. A rural area is the perfect location to prevent their activities from being observed. Have you observed the stockpiling of materials, sudden activity around previously abandoned houses or barns, or suspicious persons attempting to rent or obtain property?
Be aware that any of us can be a target. The FBI is asking for your help. Report any suspicious activity to the FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force at the following numbers:
Birmingham FBI – 205/326-6166
Mobile FBI – 251/438-3674