Counter-Terrorism: Do or Die Dates for al Qaeda

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October 27, 2005: Dates to Consider. The next week will see to important dates in the Islamic religious calendar, which might be used by terrorists to grab headlines.

· October 30-31: the "Night of Power," the holiest day in the Islamic faith, commemorating God's revelation of the Koran to Mohammed.

· November 3-6: "Eid al Fitr," the festival celebrating the end of Ramadan.

While the "Night of Power" is a particularly religious occasion, and thus not likely to be used by Islamist terrorists for some spectacular attacks, Eid al Fitr is a joyous celebration, during which government offices close down, with police and military personnel being given lavish leave, which might offer terrorists the opportunity to make some spectacular attack in a Moslem country. Or a terrorist attack might occur in some non-Moslem country, enabling the Islamists to claim that God's vengeance is being visited upon the infidels.

There is an anticipation, especially in Moslem countries, that Islamic terrorists will have to show they are still viable organizations by making spectacular attacks during these times. If there are no attacks, al Qaedas reputation takes another hit, and their street cred wears a bit thinner, making recruiting, fund raising and operations that much more difficult.

 


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