Friday, 6 November 2009

The Enemy Within

Yesterday a Major in the US army perpetrated the worse terrorist attack on US soil since 9/11, with 12 dead and 31 wounded. Some links about the event:


* US Army major behind Fort Hood murders expressed sympathy for Islamic terrorists
* About the killing in Texas and is the US Army broken?
* Fort Hood Attack the largest on US soil since 9/11


From the above there is an argument that this is more of a case of 'SJS' (Sudden Jihad Syndrome), but we can also see that this individual had reservations about serving in Iraq and has made this clear persistently over the last several years. Even warranting an FBI investigation 6 months ago towards his apparent support for suicide terrorists.

Most would agree that the key defence against acts of terrorism with national borders are well designed homeland security initiatives and intelligence (essentially tight border controls and surveillance of 'high-risk' individuals). From the above initial reports emerging after this event I find myself asking how many more signs do the intelligence services need, especially as 'profiling' seems to be at the top of most policy makers wish-lists when it comes to counter-terrorism measures?

Maybe this will simply become a case of SJS, but from what I have read so far this was wholly preventable and should have been acted on. I can not find the link now, but I am aware of US veterans from Iraq supplying IED to gangs in the USA, this is a criminal act and not terrorism but we can see how there are sufficient numbers of very skilled people within the USA now capable of supplying these devices. The killing of the radical Iman in Detroit has also sparked threats of retaliation from certain quarters.

Do we now see the possible emergence of an insurgency at home? People like this Major and the Iman will be portrayed as martyr's for the cause, the tools to wage the war are easily available while most can see Obama's hesitancy at committing forces to the conflict zones, maybe an well orchestrated domestic campaign will prove the tipping point?

Of course these are just observations and opinions on my part, but if I am thinking it, others must be too.

Peace

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