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The Edge of Terrorism

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Al-Qaeda Develops "Liquid Explosives" That Dry into Clothing

August 7th 2013

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While the U.S. continues to observe a terrorism alert, especially at U.S. diplomatic facilities in the Middle East and North Africa, Israeli intelligence officials began warning police and security agencies throughout the world that disturbing intelligence describes a new weapon in al-Qaeda's arsenal. According to an Israeli police counterterrorism expert, a liquid explosive may be utilized by al-Qaeda and its affiliates to attack targets that are increasingly vulnerable. According to soyrces, the liquid explosive can drench a suicide bomber's clothing and become highly volatile when dried.

Explosives experts credit al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) with the development of this new improvised explosive device (IED). AQAP is currently battling the government of Yemen, Saudi Arabia's vulnerable neighbor. U.S. intelligence claims that a message between Ayman al-Zawahri and AQAP was intercepted and there were also other streams of intelligence that contributed to the threat from AQAP against U.S. embassies overseas, according to Fox News Channel on Tuesday morning.

Americans warned about 'Body Bombs'

On Sunday afternoon, U.S. government officials warned American and foreign law enforcement and security agencies that terrorists may be planning to use "Body Bombs," which are surgically implanted into the bodies of terrorist "mules," according to Fox News Channel anchorwoman Harris Faulkner.

Faulkner discussed the topic of improvised explosive devices (IEDs) and body bombs with Fox News terrorism analyst Dr. Walid Phares, despite the pressure by Islamic groups such as the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) to ban Phares from the airwaves and from lecturing on college campuses or at police academies.

"The [body bomb] threat brings new meaning to the term “suicide bomber” and “improvised explosive device,” one expert stated. Federal officials revealed they were issuing a global warning based an enormous amount of terrorist "chatter" this weekend, especially by members of al-Qaeda and its offshoot Islamist organizations, according to a former New York City police explosives expert, Benjamin Cardoza.

“Recent intelligence brought to light the possible terrorist scheme but no specific plot has been uncovered,” according members of the U.S. House of Representatives.

Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, said on Fox News Channel that an attack against one of the State Department's overseas embassies or consulates is being given the full attention of U.S. security leaders.

A U.S. security official told that a body bomb implanted is likely to come from overseas rather than domestically and that precautionary steps have been taken internationally and in the United States to be on guard for such terrorism suspects. In August 2009, an al-Qaeda suicide bomber, Abdullah Hassan Tali Assiri, attacked and injured Saudi Prince Mohammed bin Nayef with a bomb concealed in a body cavity after passing through two airport scanners, Rep. King said on Fox News. King and TSA officials would not say if the full-body scanners currently employed at U.S. airports would detect bombs implanted in a human. Also, there are questions as to the vulnerability of these body bombs to radio waves, cell phones or scanners.

A number of DOD divisions, including all of the military branches, have been pursuing counter-IED (C-IED) efforts leading up to June 2005 when DOD established the Joint IED Defeat Task Force, followed in 2006 with the creation of the Joint IED Defeat Organization (JIEDDO) to lead and coordinate all DOD actions to defeat IEDs, as reported by the Examiner.

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