Sunday, July 01, 2007

U.K. terror update

By Michael J.W. Stickings

From ABC's The Blotter: "U.S. law enforcement officials received intelligence reports two weeks ago warning of a possible terror attack in Glasgow against 'airport infrastructure or aircraft,' a senior US law enforcement official tells the Blotter on ABCNews.com." What is not clear is what, if any, communication there was between U.S. and U.K. intelligence and law enforcement officials. Did the U.S. warn the U.K.?

From The New York Times: "Early Sunday, after a day of fast-moving developments, the London police announced that two people had been arrested in Cheshire, in northwest England, 'in connection with the events in London and Scotland.' The arrests were in addition to those of the two occupants of the blazing car at Glasgow Airport." (See also CNN.)

The threat level in the U.K. is "critical" -- meaning, according to the Times, that "another attack is considered imminent". As the AP and others are reporting, it is believed that the Glasgow attack is connected to the London car bombs discovered on Friday. (See also The Guardian.)

According to at least one witness, one of the men in the car at Glasgow Airport (see photo below, from the Times) was shouting "Allah, Allah" as he fought with police.

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For some perspective on the attack, see Larry Johnson at No Quarter: "Are there jihadist extremists in the world who are willing to kill innocents? Absolutely. Are they amenable to negotiation? No. I am not in the, 'have you hugged a terrorist today' camp. However, we need to stop equating their hatred with actual capability."

And see Taylor Marsh: "This is what can happen when there is a transition in government. Blair steps down. Brown takes over. Terrorists strike. As for 'terrorists,' so far we mean renegade individuals in a car who didn't want to die for jihad. (Update: One of the men who bombed Glasgow airport died en route to the hospital.) As for yesterday, some guys who couldn't even pull off a car bombing. It's called an unsuccessful attempt."

And Barbara O'Brien at The Mahablog: "Thursday a single explosion killed five U.S. soldiers in Baghdad, and I don't see the media or the wingnuts flame about that."

And see Cernig at The Newshoggers, who knows a thing or two about Scotland: "We're looking at sloppy homegrown amateurs with design ideas drawn more from action movies than from actual knowledge."

More to come. Stay tuned.

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