In January of this year I discussed terrorism on this blog. I assessed that IS-inspired terrorism is actually more dangerous than IS-directed terrorism.
IS directed terrorism is easier to track. There will be planning. There will be electronic communication. There will be money transfers. There’s always a chance that someone will report suspicious activity, whether it’s banks or individuals. Planning can be compromised by lack of electronic security.
Contrast this with ISIS-inspired attacks in which lone wolves decide to take it upon themselves – for whatever reason, be it anger, religious zealotry, or mental illness – to murder scores of innocent people and screech their allegiance to Allah, the Islamic State, or whatever terrorist entity of the day moves them. IS doesn’t take part in planning. There are no money transfers, no plans being made by phone, text, or email. ISIS isn’t directly involved, although their leadership is certainly delighted by the results!
When the two scumbags launched an attack on San Bernardino, ISIS praised the two terrorists, but stopped short of claiming responsibility. The female gargoyle pledged her allegiance to ISIS in an online posting, but the attack doesn’t appear to have been directed by them. They simply stockpiled guns, went on a rampage, and tried to get away in a car, which didn’t work out so well for them.
During the past couple of weeks, a series of terrorist attacks rocked Europe. There were several attacks in Germany, only one of which doesn’t appear right now to have been inspired by ISIS (although one witness claims she heard the murderer screaming “Allahu Akbar”), and one in the French city of Nice on Bastille Day, which killed more than 80 people when a terrorist named Mohamed Lahouaiej Bouhlel plowed a into crowds, leaving a street strewn with bodies before taking a hike to swine humping hell.
It doesn’t matter if the attackers were mentally ill, bullied, or inspired by radical Islam. There was no planning, no strings to unravel in terms of tracking potential future attacks, and lots of carnage.
Worse yet, it requires no effort or resources on the part of ISIS, other than to applaud the bloodshed and publicly claim credit for inspiring the attacks. Hell, it’s free labor for them that doesn’t require their fighters to leave the AO! It’s free publicity, and it’s like a contagious disease that empowers and encourages other frothing loons to stage rampages of their own.
Meanwhile, what makes inspired attacks even worse is that it gives clueless politicians reason not to acknowledge problems with ISIS, radical Islam, or anything related to it, because the attacker was sick/mental/bullied/*insert stupid reason that’s not terrorism here*.
I know some will claim that it really doesn’t matter. Lives have been lost. Security has been compromised, as has the people’s confidence in their governments’ ability to protect them from violence.
But it does matter, because the terrorists’ goals are being accomplished without much effort or risk on their part. And that’s a big problem.