Nine months ago Eli Lake wrote about testimony given to the House Homeland Security Committee in which Lt. Gen. Michael Barbero, head of the military’s Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization, said IED’s common in Afghanistan and Iraq were on their way to our shores.
Yesterday may be evidence that the testimony given was correct: (h/t Mark Levin)
In Iraq and Afghanistan, homemade, low-tech bombs, often hidden along roadsides, have been some of the deadliest threats to United States soldiers. In Afghanistan alone, these improvised explosive devices, or IEDs, were responsible for 1,290 of the 2,477 U.S. and coalition casualties since 2001, according to iCasualties.org, which tracks troop deaths.
Now, IEDs could be coming to U.S. shores.
According to Lt. Gen. Michael Barbero, head of the military’s Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization, some of the same terrorists who amassed the know-how on building IEDs are setting their sights on the U.S.
“Today’s IEDs are relatively simple, low-tech devices, which routinely use command wire, pressure plates, or radio-controlled triggers,” Barbero wrote in written testimony released Thursday ahead of a closed hearing of a subcommittee of the House Homeland Security Committee. “Many readily available components such as cellphones, agricultural fertilizers and simple electronic transmitters and receivers have legitimate commercial uses, but are easily and increasingly adapted for illicit purposes in manufacturing IEDs.”
Barbero cited the case of an Iraqi named Waad Ramadan Alwan who moved to Kentucky in 2009 after winning a visa as a political refugee. According to a December 16, 2011, plea agreement, Alwan was an Iraqi insurgent working between 2003 and 2006 to plant IEDs on roads traveled by U.S. troops. In 2010, in Bowling Green, Ken., Alwan began to train another man in how to make them, making diagrams of the bombs and giving oral instructions on how to assemble the devices, according to the document.
Eli Lake today:
A key component of the bombs used yesterday in the attacks on the Boston Marathon resemble the kind of homemade bomb al Qaeda has encouraged English-speaking terrorists to use.
The Daily Beast has confirmed with U.S. counter-terrorism officials that the bombs placed Monday at the marathon were made from pressure cookers, a crude kind of explosive favored by insurgents in Pakistan and Afghanistan. A recipe for a bomb that uses the pressure cooker was part of the debut issue of Inspire, the English-language online magazine of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.
While the pressure cooker component is far from definitive proof that Monday’s attack was committed associates of al Qaeda, experts inside and outside of the government say it is nonetheless an important lead for investigators.
“The fact that the pressure cooker was used is a curious and suspicious detail which I have no doubt this will lead investigators to look at whether this was inspired, or motivated by an al Qaeda affiliate,” said Evan Kohlmann, senior partner at Flashpoint Global Partners, a New York based security firm. An article in the summer, 2010 issue of Inspire magazine called “Make a Bomb in the Kitchen of Your Mom,” describes the pressurized cooker as the most effective method for bomb-making. “Glue the shrapnel to the inside of the pressurized cooker then fill in the cooker with the inflammable material,” the article instructs.
If these things are indeed that easy to make intelligence is going to be that much more important to stop these kind of attacks before they happen. Of course we’ve seen how important intelligence gathering is to the Obama administration…..yeeeeeah.
Dangerous times ahead.
Meanwhile Obama asks why:
“We still do not know who did this or why,” he said from the Brady Press Briefing Room, cautioning people against jumping to conclusions. “But make no mistake, we will get to the bottom of this, and we will find out who did this, we’ll find out why they did this.”
You know what….I could give a flying f*** why. For those assigned to find out who was behind this attack I can understand why they want to know the “why,” but I don’t recall Bush saying we needed to find out “why” they flew those planes into our towers. No, he said we will find you and we will destroy you.
But our President says its important to understand why these terrorists, whether domestic or foreign, feel the need to attack us.
Give me a break.