Saturday, June 30, 2007

Third UK Attack At Glasgow Airport Also Fails

By Cernig

There's been an attack on Glasgow Airport which possibly says a great deal about the two failed car bombs in London yesterday. Reuters has this:
A four-wheel-drive vehicle crashed into the main terminal at Glasgow airport on Saturday and exploded in flames, a day after police foiled a possible al Qaeda plot to detonate two car bombs in central London.

A Glasgow police spokeswoman said there were no immediate reports of any injuries and said the blaze was under control.

Witnesses told the BBC that the vehicle, a Land Rover or a Jeep Cherokee, had exploded shortly after crashing into the glass front doors of the terminal, and said there was a heavy stench of petrol.

"It raced across the central reservation and went straight into the building," said taxi driver Ian Crosby outside the terminal.

Crosby said a stocky Asian man had got out of the car and was quickly wrestled to the ground by bystanders.

"It would appear to me to have been a deliberate attack. I think this was a terrorist attack," Crosby said.
Indeed, a deliberate but botched terrorist attack - Scotland's first, if so - seems to be a reasonable conclusion, looking at other reports.

The BBC quotes an eyewitness as saying that the occupants deliberately set the car on fire and were trying to use what appear to be Molotov cocktails around the car when stopped by police and bystanders. If there was an explosion, though, it appears to have been a small one as the only reports are of smoke damage to the terminal building. At least two and possibly as many as four people - the two occupants of the car and unknown others - have been arrested.

Craig Murray writes that:
At least two of the arrested men were Asian. There is no simple equation between Asian and Muslim but in the UK, and particularly in Glasgow, it does increase the likelihood.

...Thankfully, whatever is happening, we do not appear to be facing a wave of attacks by sophisticated terrorists with good bomb making skills.
Given that the original car used in London was sighted last in Scotland, and given the timing and method, I think it would have to be one hell of a coincidence if this incident and yesterday's failed attacks in London were unlinked. Which is good news on two fronts.

Firstly, the Glasgow Muslem community, one I know quite well from business dealings over the years, is close-knit and doesn't have more than a tiny minority of religeous extremists. That should help in tracking down the attackers and any accomplises in short order.

Second, this third car spectacular as it looks, wasn't anything like "a fireball the size of a house and a shock wave spreading out over a diameter of at least 400 yards" as one expert was saying these devices had potential for yesterday. If this car was rigged the same way as the other two then the bomb simply didn't work as planned - something I suggested these devices were unlikely to do in my post yesterday. We're looking at sloppy homegrown amateurs with design ideas drawn more from action movies than from actual knowledge. That means no Iraq connection except that from watching the evening news.

Third, and most gratifying for this ex-pat Scot, the gallus citizens of Glasgow had a go instead of panicking - wrestling the occupants of the car to the ground so that police to detain them and quietly moving everyone away from the wreck in case of a secondary explosion. It's nice to see the character of your homeland's people confirmed so admirably.

gallus ['galəs, -z]
bold, daring, rash, wild, unmanageable, impish, mischievous, cheeky. (Scots Dictionary Online)

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