Al Qaeda Behind Latest Terrorist Attempt?

Spencer Ackerman at Wired News examines the recent cargo plane bombing attempt – alleged to have been organized by Al Qaeda. Experts are still unsure as to the purpose of the cellphone motherboard which was attached to the bomb. Had the terrorists set an alarm on the phone which would trigger the device, or were they intending to call or message the phone, initiating detonation?

“They couldn’t call,” says Roger Cressey, a former counterterrorism official in the Clinton and George W. Bush administrations. If the terrorists used a regular cellphone to call an airplane-borne bomb from a great distance, it probably wouldn’t be able to reach a tower that could bounce a signal to the phone — though it’s not impossible.

“It’s pretty damn hard” to succeed at a mail-borne intercontinental bombing, says a former intelligence official who requested anonymity because he’s still a government employee: “You stick it in the mail, it goes on a plane, the plane’s gonna fly, but you better hope it goes off.” …If al-Qaeda is the culprit, the Pentagon adviser says, the terror group is showing “declining capability.” Hijacking multiple aircraft on 9/11 is much more complex than trying — unsuccessfully — to blow up a pair of passenger or cargo planes.

Here’s a comment from Scott Stewart at the Stratfor website,

The Oct. 29 discovery of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) inside two packages shipped from Yemen launched a widespread search for other devices, and more than two dozen suspect packages have been tracked down so far. Some have been trailed in dramatic fashion, as when two U.S. F-15 fighter aircraft escorted an Emirates Air passenger jet Oct. 29 as it approached and landed at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. To date, however, no other parcels have been found to contain explosive devices.

The two parcels that did contain IEDs were found in East Midlands, England, and Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and both appear to have been sent by al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), al Qaeda’s jihadist franchise in Yemen. As we’ve long discussed, AQAP has demonstrated a degree of creativity in planning its attacks and an intent to attack the United States. It has also demonstrated the intent to attack aircraft, as evidenced by the failed Christmas Day bombing in 2009 involving Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, who tried to detonate an explosive device concealed in his underwear on a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit.

A tactical analysis of the latest attempt suggests that the operation was not quite as creative as past attempts, though it did come very close to achieving its primary objective, which in this case (apparently) was to destroy aircraft. It does not appear that the devices ultimately were intended to be part of an attack against the Jewish institutions in the United States to which the parcels were addressed. Although the operation failed in its primary mission (taking down aircraft) it was successful in its secondary mission, which was to generate worldwide media coverage and sow fear and disruption in the West.

Scott continues, going into detail of the tactical details of this failed terrorist attempt, and the apparent fixation jihadist groups have for attacking aviation targets. Click here to continue reading.


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5 thoughts on “Al Qaeda Behind Latest Terrorist Attempt?

  1. The good thing about your information is that it is explicit enough for students to grasp. Thanks for your efforts in spreading academic knowledge.

  2. The doctrines of Islam established in the Quran & Sunna make it clear that it is as much of an Enemy to Liberty as Marxism. Labeling the enemy as only one of its factions is foolish at best. There is no moderate nor radical Islam any more than there is benign Marxism. Islam has been brutalizing the human race for nearly 1400 years. If we don't name it we won't confront it!

  3. Al Qaeda is a Chimera. It exists as a matter of mind rather than as a matter of fact. At the far end it is simply a manifestation of the Ikhwan.

    In the events of 9/11, and others, it was a front for "false flag" operations. Mr Cressey says above that "the terror group is showing “declining capability.” That is because 9/11 was not accomplished by some guys living in mud hovels in Afganistan, it was accomplished through the actions of a State or States. Now al Queda has much more limited access to those assets, and struggles to maintain it's image of power and reach. Start with KSM and walk back the cat:

    Yemen exists as part of the "Myth of Westphalian States". It is configured as it is today by virtue of Great Britain's partitioning of the Ottoman Empire in the wake of WW I and, dare I say it, the closing chapter of "The Great Game". Pull out a map and look: Yemen is simply a southern province of Saudi Arabia, which is in-and-of itself an artificial entity. The world is Tribal and bound by Identity, not divided by borders. And perhaps the greatest "tribe" on the planet is the Ummah.

  4. Could you please give us some first hand accounts of the Clinton visit to your country. I read somewhere that she praised "multi-cultural" race policies of the government. Also, wants NZ troops in Afghanistan? Please give us your keen insight (as a native) on "the rest of the story" regarding U.S./Kiwi political relations.

  5. faked bomb plant to put restrictions on cargo , no more ammo shipped thru UPS ? smell a rat just like obamas trip to india . hows hillary doing in New Zealand ?

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