Could There Be a Pack of Lone Wolves?

Khalid Ali M AldawsariLast week’s apprehension of a Saudi man, Khalid Ali-M Aldawsari, who had obtained a scholarship to study in the United States with the intent of carrying out jihad ordered chemicals with the intent of bombing several U.S. targets – including the Dallas home of former President George W. Bush and the homes of several soldiers who had served at Abu Ghraib – got me thinking: Will this country start experiencing day-to-day terrorism? That is certainly a question that many of us have asked ourselves, especially those of us in the security industry.

I remember in the weeks following the Sept. 11 attacks I heard a news story that interviewed several Israelis, who shared testimonies about how they have lived for the past 50 years, dealing with terrorist attacks routinely. They said things like “Always have a radio on;” “Always let family and friends know where you are going and when you will be back;” “Immediately contact loved ones when you hear the news of an attack;” “Be cautious of everyone;” and “Trust no one.”

Wow! What a way to have to live.

As we move further and further from Sept. 11 without a terrorist attack on our homeland, some people may have a tendency to think it’s not going to happen here. But, if not for the awareness of employees at two companies, Carolina Biological Supply and Con-way Freight, these planned terrorist plots could have easily occurred.

“The terrorism case outlined in court documents was significant because it suggests that radicalized foreigners can live quietly in the U.S. without raising suspicions from neighbors, classmates, teachers or others. But it also showed how quickly U.S. law enforcement can move when tipped that a terrorist plot may be unfolding.” Saudi man charged with plotting terrorist attack, by Adam Goldman and Betsy Blaney, Associated Press

This example of diligence on the part of the business community is to be highly commended. This particular case further demonstrates that we have improved cooperation between the private and public sectors. However, it should also be a wake-up call to all citizens, a call to reality, not fear. Will we see more stories like this one? Will we experience individualized terrorist attacks on a routine basis? How many Aldawsaris are living among us, being funded by foreign industries? What do you think?

Posted by Darren A. Nix on Mar 01, 2011


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