The online magazine is another example of the vast amount of propaganda floating on the Internet. Last year the FBI's Directorate of Intelligence estimated that there were as many as 15,000 websites and web forums that were supportive of terrorist activities and that about 80 percent of those sites existed on U.S-based computer servers. US counterterrorism and intelligence analysts remain concerned about the spread of Internet propaganda and its ability to possibly incite violence.
Last month FBI Director Robert Mueller testified before Congress saying, "The Internet has expanded as a platform for spreading extremist propaganda, a tool for on-line recruiting and a medium for social networking with like-minded extremists. And this has contributed to the threat from homegrown radicalization in the United States."
The Department of Homeland Security and the FBI issued an intelligence note after the first issue of "Inspire" was published online. DHS and the FBI noted they were concerned "that the sophisticated, colloquial English-language magazine could appeal to certain Western individuals and inspire them to conduct attacks in the United States in the future."
"The latest edition of 'Inspire' is not very inspiring," said Rep. Pete Hoekstra, R.-Michigan, ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee. "The call for lunch-counter attacks in Washington, D.C. is alarming, but consistent with the type of smaller-scale terrorist attacks that al-Qaeda and its affiliates are seemingly focused on these days. Overall, the themes and messages of this edition are a repeat of the ones we saw in the first edition."