In the aftermath of the siege and death of Osama bin Laden, counter-terrorism officials prepare for Al-Qaeda’s response. The home front is on alert with heightened awareness for both soft and hard target attacks. There have been numerous false alarms, including the foiled terrorist plot in New York City a couple weeks ago. Intelligence analysts assert that Al-Qaeda is seeking to conduct a large-scale attack, proving to their enemies the group’s resilience and adaptive modus operandi, while rallying support from affiliates.
In the last decade, however, the elimination of key individuals within the terrorist network has left Al Qaeda on the defensive, forcing the remaining operatives into hiding and reducing their effectiveness. Furthermore, intelligence gathering and dissemination has improved tremendously since 9/11. Law enforcement officials have thwarted numerous attacks by radical individuals such as the cases involving Bryant Neal Vinas and Najibullah Zazi, two men who, on separate occasions, traveled from the United States to Pakistan, and underwent weapons and explosives training in Al-Qaeda’s training camps, but were foiled by the FBI before they were able to carry out their missions.