The Global Security Newswire, picking up on a story from NBC earlier this week, reports that US intelligence officials fear Islamist extremists intend to target Wall Street banks or their top managers.
Intelligence researchers said there is a nonspecific but increasing fear that extremists in Yemen could make another attempt at shipping hidden explosive devices or chemical and biological weapons materials to New York financial institutions. U.S. authorities think extremists operating from Yemen were responsible for the packaged bombs addressed to Chicago-based synagogues in late October. The explosive devices -- hidden inside printer cartridges -- were intercepted in the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom but officials think they could have been designed to detonate in midflight (see GSN, Nov. 3, 2010).
Al-Qaeda's official magazine, " Inspire," in its most recent issue included a mention of attempting to deploy the biological pathogen anthrax in a terror strike, officials said.
Al-Qaeda member Abu Suleiman al-Nasser in a recent blog post exhorted, " "Rush" my Muslim brothers to targeting financial sites and the program sites of financial institutions, stock markets and money markets."
GSN says intelligence officials are warning the heads of some of America's top financial institutions to beware Yemeni terrorists.
The more I mull this over, the less sense it makes. al Qaeda's ambition is to bring down the United States. The best al Qaeda has managed is to bring down two skyscrapers, bomb a ship and destroy a couple of foreign embassies. By contrast, Wall Street has done far more to weaken and undermine America than al Qaeda could manage even in its wildest dreams.