I have been following the attempted Times Square bombing with great interest. Little-by-little details have dribbled out. I’m not a terrorism expert or detective, but I’d like to take a few guesses about the perp.
This entry will stay online. Let’s see how good a guesser I am.
I suspect the guy pictured in the surveillance video… Mr Balding with a change of shirts… is our guy. If the person shown wasn’t involved he’d be at the police station by now proclaiming his innocence. It’s better to do it that way than be confronted by heavily armed federal agents.
The guy was probably alone. Anyone with backing or a mentor or organized in any sense of the word wouldn’t have attempted to do what this guy did. He used “nonexplosive fertilizer” according to NYPD. He brought a car full of gasoline, propane and fireworks and only managed to start a seatcover fire!
I’m not complaining.
Unfortunately there was some planning. This was not spur of the moment. He had to get the license plate. He had to get the car. This probably means he had a motive or a score to settle. I suspect “grudge” will be an applicable word.
He changed his shirt on the street just off Times Square where there are more TV cameras than a TV camera factory! The VIN plate from the vehicle was gone, but there are other less obvious places where VIN numbers are also found. His thought process never went beyond one or two steps. He was not a deep thinker.
He’s going to be a loser… a low life… a sad man who feels persecuted. We will be underwhelmed when we see who he is. He won’t be the conventional terrorist we’ve come to fear.
I suspect the police will find him quickly. The images from the surveillance video, though not CSI quality, will bring tips. The original t-shirt vendor who spotted the smoking car later told reporters, “See something, say something.” He’s quickly become the poster child New Yorkers want to be.
In the end the Times Square Bomber will be seen as the Times Square Bungler. The police, though diligent, were very lucky Saturday night.
We live in a free society. Stuff like this just comes with the territory. New York City is loaded with targets, but it’s not alone. A few miles from here are a series of reservoirs. They’re virtually unprotected. We’re a nation of unprotected targets in a world that’s changed.