Taking down our financial systems by forcing us to lose faith in them by hacking into bank accounts, Paypal, any place they can steal from businesses or individuals.
Feeding dissent and disorder by challenging everything possible; the latest is the President’s claim that we killed Osama Bin Laden. A few years ago we would have taken the word of the President of the United States; the continual questioning once “proof” is provided; beyond reason.
Feeding the dissent between the Democrats and Republicans which has now brought us to the point that Congress is hamstrung and can’t seem to agree on anything and members use their time attacking each other.
What better way to destroy the United States than from within?
They can’t “take down the internet”. They can’t hack into paypal, etc, any better than teenagers in Russia can do. They’ve already acknowledge that ObL is dead. Your last item is so vague, I don’t know what you mean. Will they brainwash Congress using grammar?
Perhaps they will attach us by flooding GD with duplicate threads.
The threats have already started surfacing. From a situational awareness report circulating within the Federal Government, we learn that a series of “white powder letters” have been received at several District of Columbia schools beginning at approximately 11:50 May 5th through this morning.
The letters are mailed from Dallas, Texas and contain a letter with the words AL AQEDA-FBI and white powder. Thus far, 38 letters from Dallas, Texas have been received or intercepted at schools and postal facilities in the District.
Unfortunately the PDF has “official use only” stamped on it, so I can’t release that or quote directly from it.
The whole question implies that they were holding back on their capability to attack pre-OBL killing. I see no reason to believe that’s true. IOW, they’ll try to do whatever they can manage to pull off, and that’s no different than what they would have done anyway. In fact, now that their leader is gone, and valuable intelligence having presumably been gathered from that operation, their capabilities have likely been reduced from what they were previously capable of.
None of this is meant to imply that they are no longer any threat and should be underestimated. But it is now more likely we (you?) are overestimating them. (by implying that they can hope to destroy us from within)
At this point, it’s quite possible that overestimating Al Qaeda is more of a threat than Al Qaeda itself.
AQ seems to like “splashy”, dramatic statements. (Think bombs, guns, airplanes, etc.) While crashing the internet (if it were possible) would inconvenience folks for a few days, it’s bodies in the streets that actually terrify people.
Osama was very clear that his plan was to make us spend ourselves into bankruptcy. I’d say he’s been pretty effective on that score. Rachel Maddow did a segment on this on Monday (transcript here). Considering how the terrorists have made us spend trillions on terrorism, which we don’t have, I’d say they’ve done their jobs rather well indeed.
Al Queda, under Bin Laden was only interested in spectacular. They didn’t care about number of deaths. If that is all they were going for they could simply get 20 suicide bombers and go to 20 malls at Christmas and the carnage, not to mention the fear of going to a mall would be enormous.
Notice how that never happened. Because death tolls are not important as much as doing something spectacular.
A terror attack needs to be coordinated just right, and people now are talking. Without OBL, they’ll see less reason not to spill their guts. That’s why even some of the thug hijackers didn’t know the intention of the 9-11 hijacked planes till they were actually on them.
The less people that know the better.
The USA is hard to hit as it’s far from the base of operations and things are being looked at closely. We could be easily hit hundreds of way, heck I can think of five off the top of my head to disrupt Chicago terribly without causing many deaths, if any.
In many ways were all just a whim away from some guy about ready to run amok with a meat cleaver or gun. It’s scary to think what tiny thing may set that fuse off.
I think most members of Al-Queda and allied groups are pretty focused on fighting in places like Afghanistan, Sudan, Pakistan, Chechnya, Iraq, etc. Inside the US, we seem to average one attack a year (not including lone-wolf types) where Muslims living in the US get in contact with terrorist groups, get sent some cash and try relatively half-assed attempts to do some damage. Last year was the times-square bomber, the year before the underwear bomber, etc. Obviously its worth keeping an eye out since even idiots can get lucky, but I don’t think its worth it to get overly worried about Al-Queda terrorists opperating in the US. Their desire and/or ability to pull off 9/11 scale attacks, or even smaller attacks like the Madrid train bombing, seems to have fallen off pretty quickly.
Which makes sense. There was never really any great bottom line in radical Islamists organizing terrorist attacks on the US. 9/11 was about as successful at getting our attention as any attack is likely to be, and while it did give Osama the war he wanted, the end result wasn’t a bloodied US withdrawing from the Mid-East, but one more engaged there then ever.