Can Another 9/11 Be Prevented?

As the 10th anniversary of 9/11 approaches, many wonder if we’re finally safe from terrorist threats. Since the catastrophic attacks in New York, we’ve seen progress in the “war against terror,” including the shutdown of terrorist training camps, the death of Osama bin Laden, and thwarted terror attacks in Times Square and other U.S. locations.

Unfortunately, terror has struck with success in places like Bali, Madrid, Moscow and London, only to name a few.

According to his recent www.nytimes.com article, Ronald K. Noble, secretary general of Interpol, said, “In my official visits to 150 countries, I have witnessed firsthand the transformation from the post-9/11 single-minded focus by governments and law enforcement on Al Qaeda and foreign-born terrorists, to today’s concerns about foreign criminals generally, and cybercrime and security more specifically.”

Noble pointed out that the main issue in the war on terror moving forward is how to protect ourselves from Al Qaeda’s remaining elements, as well as from other emerging terror movements.

Here are critical actions that Noble believes will need to be taken to keep terror threats under control:

  • “I see the systematic screening of the passports and names of those crossing our borders as a top priority … failure to properly screen travelers remains a clear security gap …”
  • “I see a need for migrants to be provided biometric e-identity documents that can be quickly verified against Interpol’s databases by any country, anytime and anywhere.”
  • “I believe that the Internet has replaced Afghanistan as the terrorist training ground, and this should concern us the most ... This is why Interpol’s 188 member countries unanimously approved the creation in Singapore of a global complex to better prepare the world to fight cybercrime and enhance cybersecurity.”

While a vast effort has been made to make the world a safer place after 9/11, Noble said that communities around the world are still not safe from global terror and criminal threat.

“If we act today, in 10 years’ time, we may not just be catching up after the latest attack, we may have prevented it,” he said, according to www.nytimes.com.

For more information about Ronald Noble’s outlook on our personal and community safety, visit: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/06/opinion/06iht-ednoble06.html?scp=1&sq=preventing%20the%20next%209/11&st=cse