In reality, this fight bears only a faint resemblance to a real war. Only rarely can al Qaeda and its imitators manage a strike against their prime enemies, Britain and the United States, and even more rarely can they succeed. Like the alleged terrorists who planned to attack Fort Dix and JFK International Airport, the perpetrators in Britain were not trained professionals but bumbling amateurs.
On Sept. 12, 2001, it was easy to believe that we would suffer dozens of major attacks on U.S. soil over the next six years, and almost impossible to imagine we would suffer none. Instead of being the opening blitz of a "long, global war," 9/11 was a freak event that may never be replicated.
I do believe that the sort of massive operation like 9-11 is much more difficult today because terrorists finally have the attention of nations around the world, and because they no longer have the sort of funding they used to enjoy. But as yesterday's report revealed, the moment you stop taking them seriously, they'll become a major threat again very quickly.
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