Timeline of Homeland Security Events and Milestones


Pulse Nightclub Shooting

(Credit: White House, David Lienemann)

June 12, 2016: Omar Mir Seddique Mateen began shooting patrons inside Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida. Forty-nine people were killed; 53 were wounded.

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Western/Southeast Wildfires – Summer/Fall 2016

Widlfire, Great Smoky Mountains - NPS

(Credit: National Park Service)

June-December 2016: Drought conditions contributed to an active wildfire season with over 5.0 million acres burned nationally. A devastating firestorm impacted Gatlinburg, Tennessee when hurricane-force wind gusts in extremely dry conditions created volatile wildfire behavior.

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Charleston Church Shooting

June 17, 2015: Dylann Storm Roof began shooting at prayer service at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina. Nine people were killed; no one was wounded.
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Western and Alaskan Wildfires – Summer/Fall 2015

Sockeye Wildfire, Alaska 2015

(Credit: CDC)

June-November 2015: Wildfires burned over 10.1 million acres across the U.S. in 2015, surpassing 2006 for the highest annual total of U.S. acreage burned since record-keeping began in 1960.

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2012 U.S. Drought/Heatwave

January-December 2012: The 2012 drought is the most extensive drought to affect the U.S. since the 1930s. Moderate to extreme drought conditions affected more than half the country for a majority of 2012.

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Stuxnet Worm

June 2010: Discovery of the Stuxnet worm exposes the vulnerability of critical infrastructure and computer systems to attack. Countries known to have been affected by the Stuxnet worm include Iran, Indonesia, India, Pakistan, Germany, China and the United States.
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Western Wildfires – Summer 2007

(Credit: NASA)

June-August 2007: Drought conditions and high winds over much of the western U.S. resulted in numerous wildfires. National acreage burned exceeded 8.9 million acres, and over 3,000 homes and structures were destroyed in southern California alone.

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Midwest Flooding

On August 1st, 2013, the Mississippi River at St. Louis crested at 49.58 feet, the highest stage over recorded.

(Credit: National Weather Service)

July 2, 1993: Persistent heavy rains and thunderstorms caused severe, widespread flooding in the central U.S. This is the most costly non-tropical, inland flood event to affect the United States on record.

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1988 U.S. Drought/Heatwave

June-August 1988: A drought across a large portion of the U.S. resulted in very severe losses to agriculture and related industries. Combined direct and indirect deaths due to heat stress were estimated at 5,000.

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TWA Flight 847 Hijacking

(Credit: Ensign Danny Ewing Jr. /U.S. Navy)

June 14, 1985: TWA Flight 847 from Cairo to San Diego with stops in Athens and Rome, was hijacked and held hostage for 17 days, while being subjected to torture and death threats.

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1980 US Heat Wave

June-September 1980: Beginning in June and stretching until mid-September, the 1980 US Heat Wave was a period of intense heat and drought that plagued the central and eastern United States and caused billions in damage.

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Creation of FEMA

June 19, 1978: President Carter’s 1979 Executive Order 12127 merged many of separate disaster-related responsibilities into a new Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

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Immigration and Nationality Act

June 27, 1952: “The Immigration and Nationality Act, or INA, was created in 1952. Before the INA, a variety of statutes governed immigration law but were not organized in one location.” — U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

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Central Intelligence Agency Act of 1949

(Credit: CIA)

June 20, 1949:  The Central Intelligence Agency Act of 1949  is signed. “The CIA was created under the National Security Act of 1947. […] Two years later, President Truman signed the Central Intelligence Agency Act, which authorized CIA to secretly fund intelligence operations and conduct personnel actions outside of standard US Government procedures.” — CIA

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