We may have been a little ahead of the curve, but here's how we captioned this photo in the spring of 2004 in our apocalyptic post "1099 and all that": "Crusaders surrounded by Saladin's army, October 2, 1187 (Second Crusade), etching by Gustave Dore (left) and 'Little Boy' mushroom cloud over Hiroshima, August 6, 1945."
"The IDEAL date for the Mother of All Terrorist Acts would be October 2," we blogged two years back:
Saladin recaptured Jerusalem on October 2, 1187, after 88 years of Crusader rule. The name Salah ad Din means "Light of the Faith," "Righteousness of the Faith" or "Weapon of the Faith," and through the ages Saladin has been an inspiration for Muslims in many respects.
Now comes Graham Allison in "The ongoing failure of imagination" at the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists [via Milt's File], citing the final report of the 9/11 Commission and admonishing us that "the major conclusion of [the Commission] deserves repetition. The principal failure to act to prevent the September 11 attack was a 'failure of imagination'":
A similar failure of imagination leads many today to discount the risk of a nuclear 9/11 . . .
The negative economic repercussions would reverberate well beyond the developed world. As U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan has warned, "Were a nuclear terrorist attack to occur, it would cause not only widespread death and destruction, but would stagger the world economy and thrust tens of millions of people into dire poverty."
How does one assess the probability of an unprecedented event that could have catastrophic consequences? Since there is no established methodology, the soundest way to proceed is to ask and answer the core questions: who, what, where, when, and how?
We'll take a quick look at the answer to the first of Allison's questions -- "Who could be planning a nuclear terrorist attack?" -- and then urge you to read the whole thing and move on [gak, that phrase] to "1099 and all that":
Al Qaeda remains a formidable enemy with clear nuclear ambitions. In 1998, Osama bin Laden declared that he considered obtaining weapons of mass destruction "a religious duty." According to the final report of the 9/11 Commission, "Al Qaeda has tried to acquire or make nuclear weapons for at least 10 years . . . and continues to pursue its strategic goal of obtaining a nuclear capability."
"Just because Osama is paranoid doesn't mean the infidel isn't out to get him," we captioned our Photoshopped image of the bearded wonder (above) two years back, when we predicted October 2 as the date for the next mega attack on our shores from the followers of the Religion of Peace.™
Now on to the conspiracy theory du jour [via Beth of My Vast Right Wing Conspiracy]:
Urgent news from Abu Dawood, the newly appointed commander of the al Qaeda forces in Afghanistan:
* Final preparations have been made for the American Hiroshima, a major attack on the U. S.
* Muslims living in the United States should leave the country without further warning.
* The attack will be commandeered by Adnan el Shukrijumah (“Jaffer Tayyer” or “Jafer the Pilot”), a naturalized American citizen, who was raised in Brooklyn and educated in southern Florida.
And from Gateway Pundit:
From Pakistan comes news that Adnan G. El Shukrijumah has successfully smuggled nuclear material across the US and is planning an attack on the United States during the holy month of Ramadan which begins on September 24th.
"Mir also said that bin Laden has assigned a man named Adnan Al-Shukri Juma (above photo) to carry out a new attack within the US which is intended to be larger than the 11 September, 2001 attacks," according to adnkronosinternational [via clarity & resolve, via My Vast Right Wing Conspiracy]. "According to Mir, Adnan Jumaa has smuggled explosives and nuclear materials into the US through the Mexican border over the last two years and is hiding somewhere in America where the FBI has not been able to locate him."
There's even a Chelsea connection:
Boston Street Gang M-13 Cited as "true terror threat" linked to Al Qaeda & Adnan Shukrijumah -- Street gangs helping to smuggle terrorists from Mexico into the US . . .
One of the two men, Elmer "Tiger" Tejada, 24, who had been deported after being convicted of a slew of crimes, including attempted murder charges for hurling a machete at Chelsea cops, was busted in Lynn on New Year's Day. Tejada is described as "an original MS-13 member" from East Boston, sources said.