Another attack by al-Qaida on the United States is "inevitable", the head of the National Counter Terrorism Center says.
Retired Vice Adm. John Redd told Newsweek magazine that al-Qaida is actively plotting to hit America, but intelligence sources don't have enough information to issue a precise warning or raise the threat level.
Redd also told Newsweek: "If we knew where [Osama bin Laden] was, he’d either be dead or captured. It’s that simple. [He’s] obviously a tough target. That whole area is a tough target. And my standard answer on OBL is: remember [convicted Atlanta Olympics bomber] Eric Rudolph. Nobody likes to hear it but, I mean, here’s a guy [who was on the run] in the United States of America. We had unlimited access — the FBI, local law enforcement — and the guy hid out for an awful long time just by keeping a low profile." "We have very strong indicators that al-Qaida is planning to attack the West and is likely to [try to] attack, and we are pretty sure about that. ... They would like to come West, and they would like to come as far West as they can. What we don’t know is … we don’t have that kind of tactical detail. What we do have, though, is a couple of threads that indicate, you know, some very tactical stuff, and that's what — you know, that’s what you’re seeing bits and pieces of, and I really can’t go much more into it." "This is a long war [on terror]. People say, 'What is this like?' I say it’s like the cold war in only two respects. Number one, there is a strong ideological content to it. Number two, it is going to be a long war. I’ll be dead before this one is over. We will probably lose a battle or two along the way. We have to prepare for that. Statistically, you can’t bat 1.000 forever, but we haven’t been hit for six years, [which is] no accident." "We are better prepared today for the war on terror than at any time in our history. We have done an incredible amount of things since 9/11, across the board. Intelligence is better. They are sharing it better. We are taking the terrorists down. We are working with the allies very carefully. We are doing the strategic operational planning, going after every element in the terrorist life cycle. So we have come a long way. But these guys are smart. They are determined. They are patient. So over time we are going to lose a battle or two. We are going to get hit again, you know, but you’ve got to have the stick-to-itiveness or persistence to outlast it."
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