Clive Irving writes: Three months after attacking Brussels airport, terrorists have shown in the attack on Istanbul’s international airport an alarming ability to stay one move ahead of the defenses put in place to stop them — an agility in planning that could present a new and serious threat to airports in the U.S.
Most experts agree that the Istanbul atrocity has the hallmarks of ISIS. Even then, the sophistication of how the attack was carried out has surprised them.
It was carried out in a way that suggests the kind of advance intelligence, careful study of a target, and cool execution that would normally be practised by Western special forces.
There were three phases. It began with an attack in a car park adjacent to the international arrivals terminal. The purpose was to draw security staff away from the terminal.
The attackers obviously knew that security at the terminal itself had recently been hardened, as a response to the Brussels attack, where the bombers had exploited the fact that, as in many airports, there was no security threshold before the check-in desks.
In Istanbul anyone entering the arrivals terminal faced screening and checks at the doors. The car park diversion achieved its aim of drawing police and security staff from the building’s first line of defense—and left vulnerable scores of people at the taxi and drop-off area waiting to go through security. [Continue reading…]