The Somalia-based terrorist group al Shabab released a video calling for attacks on shopping malls in the US, Canada and the UK. The largest shopping center in the US, Mall of America in Minnesota, was referenced in the video. While the Secretary of Homeland Security, Jeh Hohsnon, went on CNN this weekend to warn Americans about visiting the Mall of America – “If anyone is planning to go to the Mall of American today, they’ve got to be particularly careful” – the Mall of America didn’t use social media to spread the word of caution. On the day Mr. Johnson went on national TV to warn Americans, the Mall of America tweeted an announcement about the appearance of romance novelist, Anna Todd.
Al Shabab, which pledged allegiance to al Qaeda in 2012, took responsibility for the attack on the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya in 2013, which left 67 people dead and 200 injured. On February 20, Al-Shabab militants attacked a popular hotel in Mogadishu with a car bomb and suicide bomber, killing at least 25 people.