Professionally converted for accurate flowing-text e-book format reproduction, this unique study outlines the Mumbai attacks, examines a homeland defense simulation mandated by the National Security Council (NSC) to amplify these gaps, and recounts recent success stories demonstrating what departments and agencies are doing to remedy these two deficiencies.
American homeland defenders are quick to criticize the Government of India's (GoI) counterterrorism techniques, or lack thereof, in response to the attacks in Mumbai last November. But there are two major gaps in the areas of 1) Federal authority and 2) State and Local authority if the "whole of U.S. Government" was required to counter a "Mumbai-style" assault in the United States.
On November 26, 2008, ten well-trained Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT or "Army of the Pure") militants attacked seven targets and successfully detonated two IEDs in Mumbai, India. More than sixty hours later, when the GoI neutralized the last terrorist, 166 people, including 6 Americans, had been killed, and 308 had been injured. Last year alone, there were reports of three "Mumbai-style" attacks: the February assault on the Kabul, Afghanistan government buildings, the March attack on the Sri Lankan Cricket Team, and the attack on the Manawan Police Academy, both in Lahore, Pakistan.
How could such a devastating attack occur in a world-renowned city like Mumbai, the "Entertainment Epicenter" of India? Excerpts from a popular tour guide describe Mumbai, formerly known as Bombay, like this: "Measure out: one part Hollywood; six parts traffic; a bunch of rich power-moguls; stir in half a dozen colonial relics...add a smattering of swish bars and restaurants...equal parts of mayhem and order; as many bazaars as you have lying around. throw it all in a blender on high. and presto: Mumbai." Mumbai is also a port-city, with a major financial center. These characteristics can be applied to many burgeoning metropolises in the United States. But considering that Mumbai is also home to vital Indian nuclear establishments and the Western Naval Command, one can see the potential for worldwide consequences on a much greater strategic scale, regardless of the attacked city or country.