Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Our Legislators and Leadership Needs to Wake UP

Faisal Shahzad, a Pakistan-born U.S. citizen has been arrested for parking the bomb-laden SUV in Times Square, which could have killed hundreds if not thousands of people. Kudos to the members of the NYPD and Joint Terrorist Task Force.

Luckily for us, his concoction of explosives failed to detonate and a local street vendor notified a mounted police officer that initiated what appears to be by all accounts a textbook response.

Today, there are more than 100 definitions of terrorism, and they differ even within the United States government. However, at a bare minimum and according to the FBI, terrorism is the unlawful use of force or violence against persons or property to intimidate or coerce a Government, the civilian population, or any segment thereof, in furtherance of political or social objectives.

From the outset of this event, there were still members of our government at various levels debating or showing reluctance to classify this as a terrorist act, and based on the contents of the vehicle, where it was placed and the damage that could have been done, I find that hard to believe.

After the arrest of Najibullah Zazi last year, the man who planned the attack of the New York City subway system, I wrote a column outlining just some of the loopholes in our immigration laws that could allow our enemies to infiltrate our borders legally. http://thepillarofstrength.com/?p=236. Given that Shahzad was naturalized just last year, and that his wife is living in Pakistan, it is evidently clear that the system is flawed and needs repaired.

Vigilance and intelligence is a must if we are going to be victorious over this enemy, but we need to address the immigration loopholes that presently exist.

The investigative abilities of the United States government at the local, state and federal levels are the best in the world, and our response protocols are getting better everyday as well. It is the leadership and our legislators that must catch up.

We still have leaders that are in denial or attempting to be politically correct when responding to events like this, and there are very few legislators, that truly understand the threats we face and are full steam ahead in creating new laws or amending old ones to keep us safe.

The frequency of the attacks against us are increasing and it is only a matter of time before a good Samaritan, like the Manhattan vendor is no where to be found.

We really really need to wake up.

Arrest Made in New York City Bomb Plot

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Reflections on the NYC Car Bomb

For more that eight years, I have been stressing that vigilance and intelligence will be the most important factors in combating and winning over terrorism.

The public understanding the threats we face is extremely important as well, for not for them on Christmas Day and last night, both of these events could have had very different results.

Authorities are saying they’re not sure who and why the vehicle was placed there. As for Who? It makes no difference, be it Al-Qaida, a White Supremacist Group or a group like the Black Liberation Army or Weather Underground back in the 70s;  It is 100 % terrorism.

Terrorism involves the threat of, or acts of violence to a society  that are intended to intimidate or coerce a civilian population; influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or affect the conduct of a government by mass destruction, assassination or kidnapping.

As for Why? It was clearly a weapon of mass destruction based on it’s content.

It's been said to be “amateurish,” however, so was the the attacks on September 11th... A bunch of nitwits with box cutters... and were the bombings in Madrid, or Piccadilly Circus... 

Amateurs can kill thousands of people... All they have to do is slip thru the cracks.

My fear is that eventually they will. 

We’re not going to be able to stop every event (being right 100% of the time). For our enemy’s, if they’re on only 1% of the time, it could be devastating – that’s why vigilance and intelligence are so important.

As to the response: No one has the resources that the NYPD has, and no one has the response protocols that they do, dating back to 1996 when the NYC Office of Emergency Management was created. So, as unfortunate as we are that these things happen, in some strange way, it is fortunate in happens in a place that is best prepared to deal with them.

As to suspects... there is no doubt in my mind that whoever is responsible will be arrested - and unless they were highly sophisticated in the acquisition of their of equipment including the car, it will be days and weeks vs. months or years.

Again, as fate or luck would have it, it's being handled by the greatest police department in the world, the NYPD.