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The smart bomber: is terror a step ahead?

The smart bomber: is terror a step ahead?

Author: Rohit Khanna
Publication: IBNLive.com
Date: September 7, 2011
URL: http://ibnlive.in.com/news/the-smart-bomber-is-terror-a-step-ahead/182197-3.html

Wednesday's blast at the Delhi High Court has confirmed a growing belief that the terrorist is smarter and working a step ahead of our security apparatus. Consider this: concealing the bomb in a briefcase was apt for the High Court.

Litigants, lawyers and visitors to court routinely carry briefcases full of documents, inviting no suspicion. Gate number 5 was chosen with care - located next to ongoing construction with scores of people milling around. And the exterior of the High Court is not covered by CCTVs.

Attackers were equally smart in Mumbai's Dadar blast on July 13 this year. Experts say, placing the explosive device on top of a bus shelter, allowed shrapnel to hit the upper parts of the blast victims causing much higher casualties than when the explosive is at ground level.

Attackers are also making a smarter choice of target location and time of attack. Security patrolling in sensitive metros intensifies during the vulnerable time band of 5 pm to 9 pm. 10.15 am was a totally unexpected time of attack. Targetting the High court helped attackers achieve two more critical objectives - maximum mileage and showing that they could strike anywhere.

The blasts confirm that Delhi and Mumbai remain most vulnerable - the two cities have faced 22 terror attacks in the past six years. Experts also say the variety of devices used - from a tiffin box in Mumbai's Zaveri Bazaar to a briefcase at the High Court - suggest increasing skill in assembling explosive devices. The terrorists and their handlers, now also go silent after an attack, making them harder to track.

As a matter of fact, several major attacks since 2008 have yet to be cracked. Clearly security agencies are merely playing catch-up with a smarter terrorist.

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