Terrorists Have the Means But Avoid U.S. Attacks: Experts

North Texans on alert

North Texas terrorism experts Tuesday said groups launching attacks in Europe have the people and know-how to do the same in the United States, too, but choose to avoid America.

Aviation security consultant Chaim Koppel is a former Israeli security officer now based in North Texas.

"They want to decide when it's right for them to do it," Koppel said. "There are enough people in the U.S. willing to be suicide bombers. We have people who went to fight in Iraq and Yemen and Syria. And now they're coming back and they are on standby to explode themselves whenever it's needed. They know how to make bombs," he said.

Security consultant A.J. Irwin is a former U.S. Customs agent and leader of the North Texas Joint Terrorism Task Force.

"It could happen here," Irwin said. "There's a lot of concern about refugees from Syria and Iraq that may be coming here. The problem is the sleeper-cell people we've talked about since 9/11. They're here. They're already here."

Irwin said the U.S. has excellent security but that's not the only reason it has not been the target recently that Europe has been.

"I'm prejudiced. I was a federal agent here and I believe we are better. But they're good as well," he said.

The experts said North Texas is not considered to be the most likely target if terror groups do attempt an attack on America.

"Security-wise, for us in DFW, we are in a way lucky because it's not such a lucrative, famous target for terrorists," Koppel said. "They are afraid of America. They saw what happened after 9/11."

North Texas law enforcement agencies are receiving information about the latest attack and Dallas Area Rapid Transit spokesman Morgan Lyons said around 200 DART police officers are on alert.

"We've not received, as we're talking now, any updated information or advisory from the federal government about any specific threats," Lyons said.

All the security people urge residents to report anything suspicious that might help authorities avoid an attack if one is ever planned in North Texas. 

Contact Us