Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson declared that the Sony hack was a “very serious” attack “on freedoms that we enjoy in this country” on Thursday’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports” on MSNBC.
“At this point we’re not prepared to officially say who was behind this attack. I will say this, we do regard the attack on Sony as very serious, and it involves an attack, not only on that company and its personnel, but also on freedoms that we enjoy in this country. The freedom of artists and entertainers to produce movies, and the freedom of american citizens to go see movies. And so, the US government is actively considering a range of options that we’ll take in response to this attack” he stated.
Johnson did not elaborate on what “range of options” were being considered and avoided labeling the attack “terrorism,” but re-iterated “I recall, about seven years ago, there was a movie made about, there was a fictional account of an assassination of a US president. I saw the move, I didn’t like the move, I was offended by the movie, but people in this country have the right to produce all sorts of different fictional accounts of things that we do not attempt to restrain in any way. And so this attack, as I said, represents not only an attack on a company and its people, but also on basic freedoms that we have in this country.”
He did not place blame on Sony for pulling the film, and reported “we have no specific, credible, intelligence of any attempt or plan at a 9/11-style attack on movie theaters in this country. This holiday season, people should continue to enjoy their ability to associate, to travel, to go to public places. We have no specific, credible intelligence of a 9/11-style attack, or an attempted attack, or a plan on movie theaters in this country.”
Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett