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Is Al Qaeda Going to Hit Again on 9/11 Anniversary?


– By John Thorpe

With the ten-year anniversary of the 9/11 attacks a few days away, security experts inside and outside the White House are wondering if terrorists may use the occasion to strike again. Al Qaeda, reeling from the apparent murder/assassination of Osama bin Laden this spring, may use the solemn remembrance as an opportune time to inform Americans that they are still relevant, powerful, and capable of organizing and executing a terror plan. Fortunately for those of us who live in the states, no evidence exists that suggests the organization is capable of doing much on a wide scale.
“The biggest concern we have right now is not the launching of a major terrorist operation, although that risk is always there,” President Obama said in an interview with CNN.
“The risk that we’re especially concerned over right now is the lone wolf terrorist, somebody with a single weapon being able to carry out wide-scale massacres of the sort that we saw in Norway recently,” he said. “You know, when you’ve got one person who is deranged or driven by a hateful ideology, they can do a lot of damage, and it’s a lot harder to trace those lone wolf operators.”
The scary thing about lone wolf attacks is, by their nature, no one really knows they’re coming. People who work alone don’t typically tell anyone else they’re going to attack a certain target at a certain date, making it difficult for governments to identify them ahead of their attacks. But short of going to a 100% police state (no thanks) there really is no way to stop the lone whacko from doing something harmful.
After the raid on Bin Laden’s compound, the world saw a spike in violence among supporters in Pakistan and in Afghanistan. But nothing, so far, has happened in America. Some suggest that this means Al Qaeda no longer has the means to pull off a major attack, or even perhaps a minor one, and that perhaps we’ve won the so-called war on terror.
“The United States has to make a decision,” said Larry Johnson, a former State Department counterterrorism office deputy. “Either we’ve been effective in the war on terror, or we’ve wasted billions and billions of dollars.”
Other experts worry that an attack around the anniversary will be staged by the government or an ally as a false flag attack — designed to draw the United States into another war or continued operations in the Middle East.
One such target could be Iran, where commentators and politicians have been threatening to bomb the country for nearly a decade. Iran is alleged to be producing nuclear weapons, although no definitive proof has been established that this is true. Conspiracy-minded folks fear the U.S. war machine is gearing up for another war, this time in Iran, in pursuit of dominance over the region.
An attack on the U.S., conveniently blamed on the Iran regime, could easily spark passions for another war in an otherwise war-weary nation.
Whatever the case, the administration has signaled it is monitoring the terror situation and is prepared for all contingencies. Then again, it’s likely the Bush Administration thought the same thing on 9/10/01.
You can reach the author by email or on twitter @johndthorpe.


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