October 03, 2010

Is a Mumbai-style Attack Coming to Europe?

Back in March, 2009 I wrote this: A Deadly, Persistent Swarm of Gnats. To be successful, this kind of attack takes considerably more planning and logistical preparation than most people realize. It has been two years since a small band of terrorists made a mockery of Indian gun control laws and police forces. The key to their success was the sure knowledge that no one other than the local police would be armed, and they would only be lightly armed. Apparently, a Chicago man named David Headley helped scout the area some time prior to the attack itself. A footnote to be sure, but one which clearly illustrates how complex the planning and preparation is for this style assault on a soft target.

According to the MSNBC report above, there is considerable evidence that such an attack might now be planned for Europe. One might ask why Europe? Why not New York or Chicago? If I might offer an opinion, my suspicion is that the terrorists know full well that there are far more armed Americans running around with concealed weapons permits than there are Europeans. Even though the number is still relatively small, it is large enough that anyone planning a swarm-style attack on shopping malls, residential neighborhoods, and so on would have to take into consideration the very real possibility that their men might pull out AK-47s and grenades only to find themselves facing man for man well-armed, equally competent American men and women who are both willing and able to end their assualt before it even begins.

This kind of threat is very real. The first and best line of defense against such an attack has always been, and still remains, an armed and trained populace. Next time someone tells you that Americans don't need their "sick" fascination with guns, remind them that if half a dozen terrorists armed with AK-47s and grenades show up at their local shopping mall it would be very helpful to have a equal number of "crazy gun nuts" scattered through the crowd enjoying a day out with their families. The presence of such men and women would save lives by ending the attack while it was still in the opening stages.

Radical terrorists of all stripes be warned. If you try a swarm attack in my hometown I'll be there waiting for you, and I will not be alone.