Not really. Were the 24 men arrested in Britain today just copying a planned attack 12 years ago?
Warsaw airport came to a standstill today. Radio Polonia reported that:
Sky Europe operates flights from London to 2 Polish cities in southern Poland, additionally offering shuttle bus connections to further 2 locations. Just like all other carriers arriving in London on routes shorter than 3 hours it has already felt the consequences of the flight cancellations. Sky Europe spokesman Eryk Klopotowski.
‘This may be a severe disruption but I wouldn’t call it a chaos. There are severe delays on many flight. Our planes are 2 hours late at the moment. This is caused by detailed security checks done at all British airports that includes personal security check and x-ray of every item including shoes.’
Security measures were stepped up:
More police officers, including counter-terrorist police and plainclothesmen, were deployed to safeguard airports and subways. The number of traffic police patrolling main routes to airports has also been increased.
Zbigniew Wassermann, the Polish minister without portfolio, in charge of special services, said there were no indications of a threat of terrorist attacks against Poland. He added that the Polish intelligence services would closely monitor the situation.
It seems these, mostly, British freaks planned to use a cocktail of liquid chemicals plus something like a mobile phone or a key fob to blow to bits airline passengers. But this isn’t a new ‘sophisticated’ method of terrorism, as some in the media are claiming.
These were not particularly sophisticated people at all. Neither was their method.
In 1994 Abdul Hakim Murad, Wali Khan Amin Shah, and Ramzi Ahmed Yousef led a group of men who planned a similar attack on US aircraft with 12 bombs using liquid explosives.
The Washington Post reported back in 1996:
‘The impressive workings of the bombs these men were making for that purpose are spelled out in Murad's confession and in documents retrieved from the hard drive of a portable computer allegedly owned by Yousef, which he inadvertently left behind in a Manila apartment where police showed up to investigate a fire caused by the mixture of some of the chemicals.
Murad made clear that their intent in designing the devices was to ensure they could be readily slipped past airport screening devices and assembled in the washrooms of the planes once the flights were underway.’
At the heart of each device was a timer built by rewiring a commonly available Casio digital watch, which could be connected to a stabilized form of liquid nitroglycerin stored in a bottle ostensibly filled with contact lens solution. The stabilizer for the nitroglycerin looked like cotton, and Murad told interrogators that "nobody can think that it's . . . explosive."
Read more of that article here
We know these religious nutters know how to blow up planes, and we know how they want to do it, but we seem to react after we have uncovered a plot. Not before.
It seems that the security systems that airports are now employing – no liquids, no hair gel, no bottles of contact lens solution, etc, are not proactive but reactive.
That just seems daft.
More on liquid terrorist bombing?
Plot to blow up passenger planes mid-flight foiled, New Scientist