Terrorism Prevention Institute Director Discusses Times Square Bomb Scare
By Jon Jordan, NEWS 9
OKLAHOMA CITY -- David Cid with the Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism or MIPT said Saturday's failed bomb attack in the heart of Times Square should be an eye opener for the rest of nation, including Oklahoma City.
Cid, served as a counter terrorist agent for more than two decades, said while there hasn't been a major attack on our nations soil since 9/11, Saturday's incident is proof there are still people willing to go to great lengths to destroy our democracy.
"These small low tech attacks are simple to mount and not difficult to execute, fortunately this one was aborted," said the MIPT Director.
Cid said the recent failed bomb attempt also shows America's efforts to prevent future terrorist attacks are working. He points to the street vendor who first noticed the SUV on the street in Times Square had smoke coming from it and quickly notified law enforcement.
"Whatever his relationship with police was, it was quite good, which speaks to the way police are engaging him to become allies, to become their eyes and ears and that is absolutely critical," said the MIPT Director.
Also, continuing efforts by agencies like the FBI and the CIA and their willingness to work together will help to prevent additional attacks, Cid said.
While it is unclear who is responsible for the failed attack in Times Square, Cid said he wouldn't be surprised if it ends up being someone with ties to a terrorist group.
"There are indications that their operational sophistication and capacity maybe diminished but that doesn't make them less dangerous, of course they can begin to plot the next 9/11 and find the resources to do it," said Cid.
The MIPT Director added while we are winning the war on terrorism, the war is far from being won.
"The fact that they continue to do what they do is simply a function of their belief that their victory is inevitable. When they come to the conclusion this is not, they will stop. It's only a question of how many people have to die before they come to that conclusion," Cid said.
The Taliban is claiming responsibility for the attempted attack, but investigators say there's no evidence they are responsible. Officers are examining the SUV and everything inside including three propane tanks, fireworks, two filled gasoline containers, two clocks, wires to connect it all, 8 bags of an unknown powder and a large, 200-pound, metal gun case that would have acted as shrapnel if the bomb had detonated. Luckily, and for some unknown reason, the bomb malfunctioned.
"We're going to do what's necessary to protect the American people and determine who's behind this potentially deadly act and to see that justice is done," said President Barack Obama.
The New York Police Department has been placed on alert and they've flooded the street with officers.