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Terror For The Holidays

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Although there are no evidence any plots that are being planned, analysts have warned us in the past that there is the potential terrorists could decide to launch attacks during the holiday season.  Officials have citied several foiled plots that have drawn national attention to potential terror plots staged during the holiday season, including last years vehicle born explosive device (VBIED) or car bomb attempt, targeting the Christmas tree lighting at Portland, Oregon’s Pioneer Courthouse Square, and the foiled attempt to bomb a US-bound flight on Christmas Day 2009.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) recently released joint bulletin to its local law enforcement partners. The document warned that this is the first Thanksgiving and Christmas season since the death of Osama bin Laden, and cautioned that terrorists recognize that the large gatherings occurring during the holiday season provide them an perfect opportunity for mass casualty attacks.

The joint DHS/FBI intelligence document advised local law enforcement to be vigilant and watch out for suspicious activity and said that although the Oregon incident is the first known plot by an alleged "homegrown violent extremist" targeting at a U.S. holiday event, they should be aware that among the "Treasure Trove" of information uncovered when Osama bin Laden was killed investigators found documents revealing that al-Qaeda had considered the merits of launching attacks on many U.S. holidays such as Christmas.

Remember that in the past many social scientists referred to guerrilla warfare as the "weapon of the weak" and terrorism as the "weapon of the weakest." Terrorists use violence to generate fear, and thereby achieve their political goals. Experts say that terrorists target two types of targets: symbolic items of the country, and places with large numbers of people. During the holiday season there are countless crowded public areas, along with a large number of travelers, providing would-be terrorists a target rich environment as well as the fact that holidays are so strongly connected with a countries economy and culture, an attack would reap huge national and international media attention for their cause, making holidays a tempting target for an act of terror.

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Comments

  • Chris
    Chris Monday, 19 December 2011

    Weapon of the Weakest!

    I agree that terrorism is the "weapon of the weakest"---They better not mess with my Christmas!

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