Aviation securityAl Qaeda seeks to surgically implant bombs into "martyrs'" bodies

Published 6 December 2010

Al Qaeda operatives are looking for ways to defeat the growing number of full-body scanners at airports around the world; they recently tried to deploy a pair of kamikaze canines on a U.S.-bound airplane from Baghdad airport; the bombs were placed inside the dogs’ bodies, but the plot failed because the bombs were so poorly stitched inside the dogs, that the dogs died; Web sites affiliated with al Qaeda are now calling of doctors and scientists sympathetic to the organization to help it devise ways for surgically stitching bombs inside human beings, to usher in what one of the organization’s operatives calls a “new kind of terrorism”

Jihadis interested in fashioning a “new kind of terrorism” are brainstorming how surgically to implant explosives to make undetectable Frankenbombers.

What is your opinion about surgeries through which I can implant the bomb …inside the operative’s body?” an apparent mad surgeon recently asked an online forum used by al Qaeda affiliates.

He called on bomb makers and doctors to cook up the perfect solution to murder “larger numbers of unbelievers and apostates.”

I am waiting for the interaction of the experienced brothers to connect the two sciences together and produce a new kind of terrorism, Allah willing,” he wrote, according to a translation by terror experts at the SITE Intelligence Group.

The New York Daily News reports that the scheming comes amid controversy over body scanners and pat-downs in airports that some Americans complain are too invasive. The ideas for a “surgically booby-trapped martyrdom seeker” were concise for the doctor of death monitored by SITE.

Stitching a bomb into the abdominal cavity made of plastic or liquid explosives — such as semtex or PETN — was judged the best method. “It must be planted near the surface of the body, because the human body absorbs shocks,” advised one terrorist.

Prior to the attempted destruction of a Detroit-bound flight last Christmas by accused underwear bomber Farouk Abdulmutallab, al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula almost assassinated a Saudi prince with a bomb believed to have been concealed inside a body cavity; it was recently clarified that it was the first attempt at an explosive hidden in undies.

Unproven body cavity bombs worry security agents, though “no one has figured out how to actually do it,” a counterterror official told the Daily News.

Last month, Transportation Security Administration (TSA) chief John Pistole said his agency would not do cavity checks because secondary screening procedures and technology can find fuses and detonators, which must be outside the body.

You have to have some external device to cause that initiation,” he said. “That’s what the advanced imaging technology machine will pick up: any anomaly outside of the body.”

Still, experts worry about the doctors among the terrorists’ ranks and their willingness to kill. Al Qaeda’s No. 2 is Ayman al-Zawahiri, an Egyptian doctor, and last year a Jordanian doctor known as “Abu Dujana al-Khorasani” killed seven CIA officers in a suicide bombing in Afghanistan.

In the same way that drug smugglers have placed bags of narcotics in the body cavities of animals and had people ingest condoms filled with drugs, it would not be out of the realm of al Qaeda operational planners to conceive of such a technique,” said Mark Rossini, a former senior FBI counterterror agent. “No technique is off-limits to al Qaeda to achieve its destructive goals.”