April 16, 2013

How Long Does it Take for a Terror Group to Claim Responsibility?

Sometimes immediately. Sometimes, not so much:

Osama bin Laden didn't officially take responsibility for the attack until late October 2001 -- almost two months after the assault.

Then there's the 2009 "underwear bomb" attempt by Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab. That attack occurred on Christmas Day -- a Friday -- but the message by al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula claiming responsibility didn't surface until Monday, three days later. (It had been originally dated Saturday but wasn't published on radical Islamic websites until Monday.)

And how about the Fort Hood shooting in 2009? It took four days for Anwar al-Awlaki to publicly praise his radicalized pupil, Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, on his English-language web site for the tragic killing of 13 people in Texas.

And all of this is assuming that the individual who did the deed was directly connected to a larger terror network. Which misses entirely the notion of the "lone wolf jihadist".

If the pressure cooker bomb was made using the directions found in Inspire magazine, then why wouldn't these other words of wisdom from a different issue of that very same magazine apply?

What we recommend is that you focus on planning out attacks in the West .... Similarly, the mujahidin leadership are today asking the brothers in the West specifically to attack Western interests in the West instead of coming here to Yemen for example. ...

The article then goes on to say that nearly all of the [ed note by Democrats on House Homeland Security Committee: nonexistent] homegrown terrorists caught last year were part of groups planning attacks. The inference the author draws is that would-be jihadis should not try and contact others before attacking. He notes successful jihadis such as Nidal Hassan, the Fort Hood killers, and Taimour Abdulwahab al-Abdaly, the Stockholm suicide bomber, were lone wolfs.

A smart jihadi never tells any one. Which means we may not hear anything until after the perp is caught, after which whatever group he was affiliated with or had online social connections to will "claim" him as their own.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 03:30 PM | Comments |