Terrorist status and capabilities

The London attacks were a horrific tragedy, but it could have been so much worse. No chemicals, no radiation, no anthrax, less than a hundred dead… of course even one dead is too much, but this is a lot less than what we’ve feared could happen.

If this is the biggest show of strength the terrorists are capable of mounting… well, perhaps this is good news. I wonder if I’m the only one to have this thought. But then again I had the same thought when the year 2000 New Year’s celebrations went off without incident, and look what happened less than 2 years later. I’m just rambling, sorry, perhaps it will start an interesting discussion.

I think the Oklahoma Federal Building bombing is a good reminder that terrorists don’t necessarily need large numbers or large networks to do a lot of harm.

That said, I suspect lots of small attacks is easier and more effective at terrorizing a populace than one big one.

A very good point. That it seems to have been nothing more than a few rucksacks with a few watch-triggered detonators suggests it was the work of a very small number of people - and one commentator I’ve seen has suggested that the timings of the explosions could even mean that it was just one person. There aren’t thousands of terrorists lurking and waiting to strike, because if there was, they’d strike.

I think small attacks give them the biggest ‘bang for the buck’. I would assume that they could make a bigger single attack, but it may not be worth the resources.

I hear what you’re saying but in that case I’d expect a lot of small attacks, not 1 small attack in 2 years. Seems to me if that’s all they can do then the threat has been well-contained by existing security measures. The IRA could commit atrocities at will.

That is a very good point, A-Q just hasn’t been able to make many attacks, and the ones they do make are rather small, I agree it is a very good sign.