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Imminent Warning Report: High Threat of Social Unrest After Overturn of Roe V. Wade

Date June 24, 2022

Savannah Fellows, Maria Ruehl, Rhiannon Thomas, NORTHCOM Team

Jennifer Loy, Chief of Staff



Sign at an Pro-Abortion Rally in Washington DC in 2020[1]



Event: On Friday, June 24, 2022, the Supreme Court overturned the 1973 ruling of Roe v. Wade, following the leaked draft opinion in early May. The ruling reverses the federal constitutional right to an abortion. Abortion laws will now be at the discretion of individual states.[2] Following this decision, approximately 26 states are expected to ban abortions, potentially with no exceptions, immediately.[3] Thirteen states have so-called trigger legislation in place in order to automatically outlaw abortion.[4] Crowds with both pro-life and pro-choice supporters have begun to gather outside of the Supreme Court to either celebrate or dispute the overturning of legislation.[5] More protests are expected to occur in major cities, such as San Francisco, California, throughout the US this afternoon and in the upcoming days.[6]


Significance: Following the Supreme Court's ruling, protests will almost certainly continue to occur across the nation, with counter-protests happening as well. Protests will likely turn violent due to many likely feeling their constitutional and reproductive rights were unjustly revoked. Counter-protests will very likely become violent as clashes between pro-choice activists and pro-life activists are almost certain to occur. Some pro-choice activists will very likely threaten the Supreme Court Justices who overturned Roe v. Wade in retaliation. Government officials in states that will move to ban abortions will almost certainly face increased animosity and pressure from pro-choice activists. Targeted violence toward government buildings and officials, as well as churches that have a pro-life stance, will very likely occur. Some pro-life and pro-choice individuals and groups have very likely planned organized resistance since the leak of the initial draft. Those who seek abortions in states with more stringent abortion laws will likely resort to illicit abortion methods, such as smuggling abortion drugs across borders and traveling to unsafe abortion clinics.


Recommendations

  • Any pertinent information regarding online threats or incidents at protests must be reported to local law enforcement agencies.

  • It is recommended online discussion boards and chats are monitored for discourse relating to threats, attacks, and protests in order to react quickly to social unrest and violence.

  • It is recommended that police increase their presence at locations that are likely to be scenes of protests, such as government buildings and churches, to deter and respond to unrest.

  • It is recommended police and security forces increase their protection details for government officials, notably those with a role in legislative changes, due to the risk of threats and attacks.

  • If there is any additional and or critical information please contact us at The Counterterrorism Group (CTG) by Telephone 202-643-248 or email info@counterterrorismgroup.com

________________________________________________________________________ The Counterterrorism Group (CTG)

[1]HDS_2019_PHOTO-3” by Hillel Steinberg licensed under Creative Commons

[2] Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, ending right to abortion upheld for decades, NPR, June 2022, https://www.npr.org/2022/06/24/1102305878/supreme-court-abortion-roe-v-wade-decision-overturnhttps://www.npr.org/2022/06/24/1102305878/supreme-court-abortion-roe-v-wade-decision-overturn

[3] 26 States Are Certain or Likely to Ban Abortion Without Roe: Here’s Which Ones and Why, Guttmacher Institute, October 2021, https://www.guttmacher.org/article/2021/10/26-states-are-certain-or-likely-ban-abortion-without-roe-heres-which-ones-and-why

[4] Roe v Wade: US Supreme Court ends constitutional right to abortion, BBC News, June 2022, https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-61928898

[5] Right to abortion overturned by US Supreme Court after nearly 50 years in Roe v Wade ruling, Sky News, June 2022, https://news.sky.com/story/right-to-abortion-overturned-by-us-supreme-court-after-nearly-50-years-in-roe-v-wade-ruling-12628801

[6] You strike Roe? The NATIONAL MOBILIZATION FOR REPRODUCTIVE JUSTICE says NO! Fill the streets to say: Abortion rights are here to stay!, Reprojusticenow.org, June 2022, https://www.reprojusticenow.org/

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