Oh yeah. About those ‘Lone Wolf’ attacks… The New York Times has finally started to realize, they’re a bit of a myth.
The Islamic State has been linked to at least 40 executed attacks outside its self-proclaimed caliphate.* Counterterrorism officials say that these attacks fall into three broad categories: directed, enabled and inspired.
Many were initially thought to be “lone wolf” attacks — inspired by the group but conceived and executed without its participation.
But an analysis by The New York Times has found that the attackers in at least 10 strikes that came to fruition were in direct communication with Islamic State operatives. These cases are known as enabled plots.
But wait… Barack Obama declared that we didn’t have any terrorist attacks in the US, after 9/11, coordinated by terrorist organizations. ‘Member?
“We should take great pride in the progress that we’ve made over the last eight years. That’s the bottom line. No foreign terrorist organization has successfully planned and executed an attack on our homeland.”
–President Obama, remarks at MacDill Air Force Base, Tampa, Fla., Dec. 6, 2016
So I guess he was wrong…. according the times article, even the attacks in Garland, Texas on those who participated in “Draw Muhammed” day can be traced back to the Islamic State.
In the most basic enabled attacks, Islamic State handlers acted as confidants and coaches, coaxing recruits to embrace violence. In the Hyderabad plot, among the most involved found so far, the terrorist group reached deep into a country with strict gun laws in order to arrange for pistols and ammunition to be left in a bag swinging from the branches of a tree.
For the most part, the operatives who are conceiving and guiding such attacks are doing so from behind a wall of anonymity. When the Hyderabad plotters were arrested last summer, they could not so much as confirm the nationalities of their interlocutors in the Islamic State, let alone describe what they looked like. Because the recruits are instructed to use encrypted messaging applications, the guiding role played by the terrorist group often remains obscured.
As a result, remotely guided plots in Europe, Asia and the United States in recent years, including the attack on a community center in Garland, Tex., were initially labeled the work of “lone wolves,” with no operational ties to the Islamic State, and only later was direct communication with the group discovered.
I suspect the “lone wolf” moniker will disappear as we enter the “Age of Trump”, the media has no real use for it now that he is in office.