This is the September 24, 2002 joint statement of Attorney General John Ashcroft and Homeland Security Adviser Tom Ridge announces the decision to return the threat level to an elevated risk of terrorist attack. "The lowering of the threat level is not a signal to government, law enforcement or citizens that the danger of a terrorist attack is passed. Returning to the elevated level of risk is only an indication that some of the extra protective measures enacted by government and the private sector may be reduced for the time being. We emphasize that the United States and its interests are still at a significant risk of terrorist attack. Detained al Qaeda operatives have informed U.S. intelligence and law enforcement officials that al Qaeda will wait until it believes Americans are less vigilant and less prepared before it will strike again. For this reason, and for the safety and security of our nation, Americans must continue to be defiant and alert; undaunted and prepared to respond to a significant risk of terrorist attacks. The American people serve as our strongest defense against terrorism. We ask all citizens to be aware of any suspicious activity and to report it to local authorities or the Federal Bureau of Investigation."
U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security: http://www.dhs.gov/