web analytics
October 2, 2014 / 8 Tishri, 5775
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post
Meir Panim with Soldiers 5774 Roundup: Year of Relief and Service for Israel’s Needy

Meir Panim implements programs that serve Israel’s neediest populations with respect and dignity. Meir Panim also coordinated care packages for families in the South during the Gaza War.



Bronx Plot Points Up Threat From Independent Attackers


WASHINGTON – The arrest of four men accused of plotting to attack two Bronx synagogues underscores the threat to Jewish targets by individuals or small groups, several experts said.


From the shooting at a Los Angeles Jewish community center 10 years ago through the attack on the Seattle Jewish federation building in 2006, to the suspect targeting Jews at Wesleyan University in Connecticut earlier this month, an individual or small group not formally connected with al-Qaeda or any major international terrorist group was at the center of the threat.


Police believe that the four suspects arrested last week – James Cromitie, David Williams, Onta Williams and Laguerre Payen – were working alone. They were taken into custody the night of May 20 shortly after planting fake explosives, which they believed to be real, in cars parked outside the Riverdale Temple, a Reform synagogue, and the Riverdale Jewish Center, an Orthodox synagogue. They also wanted to shoot down military planes at a nearby base, according to reports.


Reports that an FBI informant played a key role in encouraging and financing the plot has prompted questions about how serious a threat was posed by the four suspects. But several security experts who work with the Jewish community said the case provides a clear road map for protecting against potential threats.


“All you need to know about terrorism you can learn from this case,” said Steve Pomerantz, former assistant director and director of counterterrorism at the FBI.


Jews will always be at the top of the list of targets for terrorists, he said, and groups unaffiliated with a large international terrorist group are “at least as dangerous” as well-known groups such as al-Qaeda because they can “more easily slip through the intelligence net.”


Paul Goldenberg, the executive director of the Jewish-organized Secure Community Network, stressed “one common denominator” present in all the past plots: hostile surveillance by the attackers.


“They were methodical enough and premeditated enough to plan and study the target,” said Goldenberg, whose network was established 3½ years ago by the United Jewish Communities and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations to coordinate and advise on security procedures within the Jewish community.


For example, the criminal complaint for the New York plot states that last month, one of the defendants “photographed several synagogues and Jewish community centers in the Bronx and elsewhere for consideration as possible targets in a planned terrorist bombing campaign” and said bombing one of the JCCs would be a “piece of cake.”


That’s why employees and others at Jewish institutions need to be “extremely cognizant” of what’s going on around the facility, Goldenberg said, because individuals could be watching the building, studying the patterns in which people enter and the times security guards patrol the surroundings.


“If people are acting nervous in a location where they shouldn’t be, say something,” he said, adding that while most institutions have video camera surveillance, personnel must be trained to spot potential dangers.


The fact that the suspects in the New York case and others acted independently and are not affiliated with any foreign terrorist group, Goldenberg said, does make it “very difficult to track them.”


“Just because they’re not members doesn’t make them any less dangerous,” he said, adding that they are “influenced by the materials they read.”


Goldenberg stressed that with the recent arrests, there is “no further threat to any Jewish institution” from the plot.


Speaking at the Riverdale Jewish Center just hours after the plot was foiled, New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said that the suspects “stated they wanted to make jihad.”


The four men, all of Newburgh 60 miles north of New York, are Muslims, and three reportedly are recent converts to Islam. Payen is a native of Haiti.


Pomerantz noted reports that the plotters met in prison, similar to the four men arrested in Los Angeles in 2005 on charges of plotting terror attacks on Jewish and military targets.


Yehudit Barsky, director of the American Jewish Committee’s division on Middle East and international terrorism, said prisoners often are attracted to Islam when incarcerated because of the “cohesiveness of the group.” Barsky has been tracking that issue.


“There are different social networks in prison” and Muslims will often pray together, eat together and protect each other, she said.


The defendants are likely to argue in their defense that they really were not that involved in the plot and that the government informant, who allegedly acquired the weapons for them, actually had directed the operation.


Pomerantz said the fact that the plot went as far as actually planting the weapons, although inoperative, made it unlikely that such a defense could be successful.


“This is as good a case as you can have,” he said.


(JTA)

About the Author:


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Bronx Plot Points Up Threat From Independent Attackers”

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Car Smashed in A-Tur
4 Women Survive Near Lynch on Mount of Olives
Latest News Stories
Car Smashed in A-Tur

A woman and three girls miraculously escaped an Arab lynch mob on Thursday afternoon while driving through the Jerusalem A-Tur neighborhood on the Mount of Olives.

Israeli PM Netanyahu and US Pres. Obama met in the Oval Office on Oct. 1, 2014.

The subtext in an Obama and Netanyahu press conference continues to be a disagreement over the role of Iran.

Jan Morgan, owner of the Gun Cave Indoor Shooting Range.

“How then, can anyone say that, the practice of Islam is protected by the U.S. Constitution?”

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat puts cement on the official cornerstone celebrating the reopening of the Tiferet Israel Synagogue in Jerusalem's Old City.

Why doesn’t Obama also label Jerusalem Arabs as “illegitimate settlers?”

Israel’s President Ruby Rivlin recites Slichot, the prayers for forgiveness that are said leading up to Yom Kippur. This slichot prayer session was held at the President’s official residence. Speaking of presidential pardons, it would be good if this were the year that Jonathan Pollard was let free.

American university campuses have become fertile ground for seeds of evil.

Letter of protest charges SJP with “harassing and intimidating Jewish students.”

Biden’s new national security adviser dissed Israel in the Democratic party platform and mocks Iran’s danger.

PA leader Abbas demands UN force Israel back to 1949 Armistice Line by Nov. 2016.

Car fires are car fires,” said the Atlantic City fire chief. But the car was parked!

US admits its ‘no-strike if any civilians might be hit’ policy does not apply to its airstrikes against ISIS.

Israeli police revealed on September 30 that they are now investigating the possibility that a fellow Arab worker may have cut the cable that held Arami as he was doing exterior work on a building.

A 14-year-old Dutch Muslim high school student is suspended after posting a video saying he is “from ISIS” and wants to “behead Jews.”

PM Netanyahu and US Pres. Obama met Wednesday evening for 75 minutes at the White House in Washington DC.

Israel talks with building blocks. The Palestinian Authority throws them.

More Articles from Eric Fingerhut

WASHINGTON – A window was shattered by a pellet gun in an apparent vandalism attack at her Tucson district office. Sarah Palin has put her on the list of Democratic lawmakers she is targeting this fall. Arizona Tea Party activists are pledging to help defeat her bid for re-election.

WASHINGTON – A window was shattered by a pellet gun in an apparent vandalism attack at her Tucson district office. Sarah Palin has put her on the list of Democratic lawmakers she is targeting this fall. Arizona Tea Party activists are pledging to help defeat her bid for re-election.

WASHINGTON – Opinion polls are expected to provide a simple answer to an important question: What are the people thinking? But the details often reveal a much more complicated picture.

WASHINGTON – A U.S. congressman is the latest to call for a Justice Department investigation into whether a pro-Palestinian group has been raising money on college campuses for Hamas.

WASHINGTON – Some conservatives are accusing the Anti-Defamation League of launching a partisan attack following its report asserting that a “current of anti-government hostility” has swept the United States in the year since Barack Obama was elected.

WASHINGTON – As Sarah Palin embarked on a tour for her just published book Going Rogue, she became the latest prospective Republican presidential candidate to criticize the Obama administration’s policy on Israel.

WASHINGTON – A new survey shows that a majority of American Jews would support a U.S. military strike on Iran to prevent it from developing nuclear weapons – a significant increase from a year ago.

WASHINGTON – A new survey shows that a majority of American Jews would support a U.S. military strike on Iran to prevent it from developing nuclear weapons – a significant increase from a year ago.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/bronx-plot-points-up-threat-from-independent-attackers/2009/05/27/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: