Since September 11, 2001, New York
City (NYC) has established a substantial terrorism intelligence operation. This
includes sending investigators and analysts overseas. Back home, NYC police set
up databases of terror related information collected locally, and obtained from
the FBI, CIA and other sources. The police also established informant networks
among the Moslem community.
was also a publicity campaign for a terrorist hot line, using ads with the
tagline; "If you see something, say something." Last year this resulted in
1,944 tips. These led to five arrests. But only two of these were terrorist
related acts (one for having bomb making materials, and one for plotting
terrorist acts.) Not revealed was how many of those tips resulted in useable
information for the databases, or led to recruiting new informants. For regular
police work, the CI (confidential informant) is a key tool in catching
criminals and preventing crimes. Several terrorist plots have been aborted
because of informants. You do not want to reveal any details of your CI
network, as this could render CIs ineffective, if not dead.
counter-terror efforts has been very effective so far. Dozens of plots have
been detected and aborted. There have been no Islamic terror attacks in the
city since September 11, 2001. Well, at least no major ones. There have been
some incidents that may have been related to Islamic radicalism. But the
informant network, and growing body of knowledge about potential terrorists has
revealed that the threat is not as great as first thought, and can be managed
if you keep an eye on things.