by The Daily Signal | Updated on 3.27.18
Paul Fredrick is a member of the Young Leaders Program at The Heritage Foundation.
David Inserra specializes in cyber and homeland security policy, including protection of critical infrastructure, as policy analyst in The Heritage Foundation’s Allison Center for Foreign Policy Studies. Read his research.
Last week, a teenage student in southern Utah brought an explosive device to school. Thankfully, it failed to explode and the student was arrested. The student was then tied to a recent Islamic State-inspired act of vandalism at a nearby school.
This plot was the 102nd Islamist plot or attack against the U.S. homeland since 9/11. It serves as an important reminder that though ISIS is largely defeated in Syria and Iraq, it still inspires people in other countries to engage in terrorism.
Authorities have yet to identify the would-be bomber, but the details surrounding the plot are clear enough to label this as an Islamist terror plot.
The terrorist left an explosive device within a backpack in a common area of the school. A student then noticed smoke coming from the backpack and informed teachers, prompting an evacuation. Police confirmed that while the device failed to explode, it “had the potential to cause significant injury or death.”
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Police arrested the terrorist in class later that day and searched his home, where they uncovered bomb-making materials and ISIS propaganda. Police then tied him to a vandalism case at another nearby school, where he had painted ISIS graffiti, put up an ISIS flag on the school flag pole, and cut up the U.S. flag.
The terrorist has been charged with the manufacture, possession, sale, and use or attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction.
This was only the fourth time that a terror plot has been foiled by an explosive device failing to go off. It is also the fourth time a school has been targeted by an Islamist terrorist. Other details on the terrorist and the plot will likely be forthcoming.
Written by The Daily Signal
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