What do you think will be the next terrorist attack?

Bombs? Biological weapons? Something more creative? Where? When?

Chemical, probably in S.E. Asia. Low casualties.

I predict this thread goes off to IMHO…

I’d be afraid that if I guess and by chance was right, I’d find myself bunking in Camp X-Ray within an hour of it happening. They don’t need trials anymore, remember?

People are probably soon to chime in to say they won’t participate in this speculation, as it might give a terrorist out there an idea. Of course, I doubt there’s much we can think up that someone dedicating their life to hurting others could.

Well, which group of evil Westerners stand “shoulder-to-shoulder” with the Great Satan and haven’t yet had a successful terrorist attack visited on them?

It’s going to be LONDON. Quite possibly on the tubes. Luckily I’ll be 150 miles north when it happens.

I doubt that. Al Queda would be smart to ride off the “It’s the US’ fault” sentiment in world opinion, where most of the world gets pissed at Americans if we choose to take military action over it. By attacking London, and giving other countries legitimate reason to cooperate with our military action, and changing the view of Al Queda from a “US problem” to a “world problem”, it hurts them more than it helps.


Probably be on something where there are a lot of civilians at the same time, and low security. Terrorists aren’t stupid you know… I’d doubt they’d try something as high profile as flying airplanes into skyscrapers again… but, you never know.

IMO, it would probably be a nuke. Detonate it in a harbor.

Flash 2 Million American Citizens Gone.Flash

Hopefully it will never happen, but given their past history, and Sadam’s arsenal…


It’ll be someplace where people thought they were safe, and it never occurred to them that they might be hated, or lumped in with the hated Americans.

I vote Canada, probably Montreal.

A neat hypothesis, were it not that the recent attack on Bali wasn’t directed against the US. And that other attacks against European cities have been foiled thanks to some pretty good police work.

Speaking of which, I have to admit that I haven’t noticed severe anti-US sentiment or even noticeable lack of cooperation where Al Qaeda is concerned. Including military intervention - there are troops from 15 countries or so in Afghanistan. (Including, btw., quite a few German troops.)

“World opinion” is obviously hard to pin down, but it seems to me to show very little anti-US sentiment when the talk is on Al Qaeda. The current criticism of the Iraq excursion is of course a different matter.

I think chem/bio can be ruled out. It’ll probably be just a bomb in a large city. Remember that before Sept. 11 and even after, the attacks weren’t all that effective (c’mon, a shoe bomb?). My money is on a bomb, probably west coast.

An oldie but a goodie: truck bombs. Al Qaeda seems alternate between military and civilian targets. So, truck bombs against the US military, conveniently spread throughout many places right now. Or not.

I don’t know the precise logistics of it, but wouldn’t it be easy to kill or make sick hundreds of thousands of people pretty easily with extremely low risk with water supply poisoning?

But everybody hates Quebec! :smiley:

First of all, I doubt if many would-be terrorists read the SDMB Too damn liberal and irreligious.

Secondly, the media has shown surprising immagination when it comes to speculation on this very same subject. I can remember lengthy discourses on dirty bombs, bio-terror, scuba-diving terrorists, suicide-coughers, tunnel explosions, bridge tampering, water contamination, food contamination . . . just about everything except for razor blades in candy.

The terrorists don’t need to read the SDMB for ideas. They can just watch CNN.

Can they build/smuggle chem or bio weapons? if so, i assume they’d release contagious ones in a high population area (sports stadium). Probably something fatal, painful, incurable, and that doesn’t show serious symptoms for a few days (so the disease spreads)

My guess would be something like a terrorist infecting himself with smallpox then going to a football game or some other event with tens of thousands of people in close quarters. If he gets 200 people infected, they will all go and interact with other people spreading the disease. If it is a disease that takes days to show serious symptoms, tens of thousands could be infected before anyone knew what was going on.

hell, if its a curable disease the same person can infect himself and go to a bunch of different events.

What if 10 operatives went to 10 events (concerts, sports, conventions), and each was infected. Then they went home, took some antibiotics, and did it all over again?

Truck bomb is the best weapon terrorists got. No more hijacking, since passengers will roll.

Given the nutjobs preference for suicidal attacks, I don’t think they’d worry about it being curable. In fact, I think they’d shy away from a curable disease, in favor of an incurable one.

I think the terrorists will go low-tech. Teams of them will go around starting fires in public buildings at pre-arranged times so that, in any given city, 20 or 30 fires will begin at 11 a.m in hospitals, schools, shops, office buildings, blocks of flats. The fire brigades won’t be able to respond to them all. Tomorrow the fires will be lit at 2 p.m, the next day 3 a.m and so on. Since serial arsonists can go on for ages without being caught, they will get away with this for some time. They won’t care if they are caught anyway they are happy enough to die for the cause. They will do similar things with bushfires when wind conditions are right. All they will need to carry is some excellerant and a lighter.

Well calc, what would happen after your proverbial event took place and was evenutally discovered is called ring innoculation. Say the event you’re speaking of took place at soldier field in Chicago. Look then at a map, draw a ring around that place, as far out as the last reported case was, well, reported and innoculate everyone OUTSIDE of that ring, if, and only if there is a vaccine for whatever it is. They would then attempt to treat everyone inside the ring, if it were possible.

In the case of chemicals such as Ricin which are extremely potent, very available and simple to produce, and for which there is no known antigen or antagonist, there would be, mass burials and/or creations of the dead, and an attempt to decontaminate those not killed or profoundly damaged by the substance.

back to the OP though… Personally, I would do things in three stages.

  1. Weaponized/aerosol chem/bio agents at large scale locales such as sporting events, conventions, shopping malls etc.

  2. A distance from where those were placed, many single, bag sized explosives, wrapped with a radioactive isotope (dirty bomb) to fill in the psychologically important places on the map so that my victims feel as if they were being closed in on.

  3. All out conventional explosive attacks on telephone switching stations, radio and television broadcast points (antennas and repeaters) cut this nation off from information, and watch the insanity ensue.

scare 'em senseless and turn out the lights.