A note on the failed VBIED in Times Square
I’m watching the news about the failed VBIED in NYC and I was hoping to write something a little more considered than this. However my thesis frazzled brain is just not cooperating at 1:30am on a Monday morning after an all weekend re-writing and editing bender. So I will limit my comments, which I hope are slightly coherent.
No speculation from me on possible perpetrator. Field is wide open there.
But what strikes me about it all is the problem that repeatedly faces terrorists…actually getting something to go boom.
My first take is whoever did this didn’t have a whole lot of training, if any. And could have solely gone off manuals they’ve found on the net.
There are ample training materials out there from all manner of terrorist groups and crazies. And plenty of things that outline how to build a device just like this.
That said they knew enough to try to take identifying markers off the vehicle. However, this too can be found in a number of online guides.
Anyway, my point is that it is far more difficult to get something to go boom (for the average untrained person) than what people think. This is why, for example, training for construction of explosives and explosives devices in terrorist training camps has historically taken up to two years, as opposed to the usual basic training where people are trained how to *use* explosives instead of how to build devices. It is an ongoing problem for militant groups. This is why some of them (and here I’m thinking AQ) often sent the detonator or a key part of it back with those it was deploying to carry out attacks. Especially for the more sophisticated attacks. Or they gave intensive one on one or small group training. Not that this is the case here, but I point it out to reinforce the point that when groups or individuals don’t have training in construction of devices there is less likelihood their devices will detonate properly.
A lot of the manuals out there are quite detailed, but as I said it’s harder than what people think.
And if you think there’s not stuff out there that people can learn from, well this picture is just a teeny part of some of the stuff out there. I’ve covered up the info for obvious reasons. As an aside the gent who made this picture trained with Ramzi Yousef, but that’s another story.