London Terrorism Mimics Madrid; Harbinger for Olympics?


The bus and subway explosions in London look like an attempt to recreate the Madrid bombings and would have been planned for months, a leading terrorism expert told the Guardian as the capital began to come to terms with an apparently coordinated attack. Michael Clarke, director of the Centre for Defence Studies at King’s College London, said six bombs would mean at least 24 people were involved in planting them. The fact that London had been hit when the resources of the security forces were focused on the G8 summit at Gleneagles indicated clever thinking by terrorists. At least three were killed and 100 injured in the attacks. An al-Qaida affiliate claimed responsibility, according to a German mangazine.

The bombings raise security concerns for the 2012 Olympics. Organizers announced on Wednesday that the games will be held in London. He warned the games would inevitably be a target for extremists – even if the overall terrorist threat had receded by then. “This will be the biggest international event [ever seen in London], bringing in people from all over the world – even the G8 summit is no comparison,” he said. “It has global attention, so it is bound to attract the attention of groups that want to use it for their own purposes. That will be the case even if al-Qaida is a distant memory.”


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