FBI Issues Warning On Hydrogen-peroxide Bombers
(NY TIMES) An investigation that led to several raids in Queens on Monday prompted the Federation Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Homeland Security to issue a terrorism-related bulletin to law enforcement agencies around the country warning them to be vigilant about homemade explosives.
“In light of the ongoing investigation in New York City, the F.B.I. and D.H.S. believe it is prudent to remind our state and local partners about the variety of domestically available materials that could be used to create homemade explosives, which have been utilized in previous terrorist attacks,” according to the bulletin, which was headed “On-Going Terrorist Interest in Homemade Explosives.”
The bulletin said the two agencies have no specific information on the timing, location, or target of any planned attack.
It noted, however, that precursors chemicals used to form hydrogen-peroxide based explosives can be obtained at various retail outlets, including hardware stores and pharmacies, and that recipes for such explosives are taught in terrorist training camps, published in widely circulated terrorist manuals, and have been recovered from terrorist safe houses.
“Hydrogen-peroxide based explosives are powerful and highly unstable; furthermore, similarities in appearance and methods of production can cause first responders to mistake certain explosives for chemicals used to manufacture narcotics,” it said.
Homemade explosives can be concealed and transported by an individual using a backpack, suitcase, plastic container, or other hand-carried item. In the attacks that occurred in London on 7 July 2005, the suicide bombers carried their homemade hydrogen-peroxide based explosives in backpacks.
No arrests were made and no explosives or weapons were found in the raids, which were characterized as “preventative” by Senator Charles E. Schumer of New York.