The hacker group Anonymous issued a threat against quite a few U.S. government targets including state.gov, whitehouse.gov, data.gov, ssa.gov, federal reserve.gov, and usa.gov. Needless to say, those include websites of some of the most prominent government entities in the United States. The threat is made to protest America's foreign policies concerning the Middle-East. 

The text for the threat appeared on the blog of the website cyberguerilla.com  on Dec. 7, and it reads thus: 

“Government of Israel and United States, our patience is exhausted!

No more words! Now only acts.

Anonymous can't be silent when we see your actions.

Now it's Anonymous time.

United State and Israel Government Target list. ( Main Attacks: Data Dump , Government Breach , Defacing , DDoSing )

Targets:

https://www.usa.gov/ = USA

https://www.gov.il/ = Israel

https://www.state.gov/ = USA

http://www.president.gov.il/ = Israel

https://www.whitehouse.gov/ = USA

http://itrade.gov.il/ = Israel

https://www.ssa.gov/ = USA

http://www.investinisrael.gov.il/ = Israel

https://www.data.gov/ = USA

http://www.antitrust.gov.il/ = Israel

https://www.irs.gov/ = USA

http://www.boi.org.il/en/ = Israel

https://www.federalreserve.gov/ = USA

http://www.space.gov.il/ = Israel

https://www.shabak.gov.il/ = Israel

Start spamming and hitting these USA and ISRAEL Government targets with Data Dump , Government Breach and DDoSing.

Spreading the #OpUSA + #OpIsrael with Defacing any .us and .il domains.

Use the hashtags #OpUSA, #OpIsrael and #FreedomInWorld to see all the Anonymous posts on social media.

Our latest Hacks and Attacks will be uploaded to https://www.cyberguerrilla.org/blog/

Anonymous main deface page for OpUSA - OpIsrael code can be found here: https://ghostbin.com/paste/o3o88

We Are Anonymous,

We Are Legion,

We do not forgive,

We do not forget

Government of USA and Israel,

Expect us.”

If you didn’t know, Anonymous is a self-styled hacktivist collective with its members spread across the world.

On their website, they gave themselves the descriptor of “an internet gathering.” Formed in 2003, Anonymous projects the idea of internet users who are connected not just by technology but also a collective passion to protest against governmental actions they think are detrimental to freedom- sometimes even anarchically.

Anonymous came to prominence in 2008 when group members digitally attacked the Church of Scientology. The attack was called Project Chanology. It all began when on Jan. 15, 2008, a video in which actor, Tom Cruise was shown praising the Scientology religion was posted on Gawker, a gossip, and entertainment blog. In response, the Church of Scientology issued a cease-and-desist letter claiming copyright violation by Gawker. Anonymous hacktivists took it upon themselves to protest this. They sent black faxes meant to drain ink cartridges, prank- calling the Church’s hotline and also launching Denial of Service Attacks(DoS) against websites affiliated with the Church. (In DoS, the attacker denies access to a digital resource for its owner).

In a more political note for the U.S., following the fatal police shooting of the 18 year old Michael Brown, an unarmed African-American in Ferguson, Missouri on Aug. 9, 2014, a hacktivist group called “Operation Ferguson” who claimed to be part of Anonymous protested the incident over the internet through a Twitter account and a website they set up for the purpose.

Ferguson city officials said that their phones malfunctioned as a result of the group’s actions and their e-mail systems were also targeted. On Aug. 14, 2014, on their Twitter feed, Anonymous posted what the group claimed to be the name of the police officer who shot and killed Michael Brown(The responsible cop’s name was not officially released at this point). But the police claimed that the police officer that Anonymous mentioned was not the person responsible for the act. Twitter later took Anonymous’ account from their platform.

On November of that same year, Anonymous declared cyber war on the Ku Klux Klan(KKK). This came in the wake of the KKK making death threats against Anonymous after the Ferguson protests the group initiated. As part of their cyber war, Anonymous hacked into KKK’s Twitter account, launched attacks against servers that hosted KKK websites and even released to the public personal details of KKK members.

Such acts rich with political leanings aside, perhaps what draws the most parallel with the present threat Anonymous has issued is a threat they made in 2013 to protest various American foreign policies. The threat mentioned that the group would take down the websites of nine government websites including the ones of the White House and the Pentagon on May 9, 2013. Nothing came of that threat. In fact, a statement made by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in the wake of the threat said that the operation posed only a “limited threat of temporarily disrupting USA websites”.

The current threat was also made to protest the U.S. government’s foreign policies. Whether it would come to nothing as in 2013 or not, remains to be seen.