Relentless Pursuit

The DSS and The Manhunt for The Al-Qaeda Terrorists

By Samuel M. Katz


Al-Qaeda’s war on America did not start on September 11, 2001.  Just ask the Diplomatic Security Service.

It was on February 26, 1993, that the United States was first attacked on its own soil by foreign terrorists. A zealous band of holy warriors, determined to punish the U.S. for stationing troops in Saudi Arabia, packed more than a ton of homemade explosives into the back of a rented van. They drove their bomb across the Hudson from New Jersey, maneuvered it through lower Manhattan traffic, and parked it in the underground garage at the Vista Hotel, beneath the Twin towers of the World Trade Center. They lit a long fuse, which allowed them time to get back to new Jersey to watch the results of the explosion on CNN. They hoped to topple one mammoth tower into the other and kill ten thousand people or more. They killed six and wounded over 1,000, but they failed: the Towers still stood.

Most of the group were captured within a week, but the mastermind behind the attack, Ranzi Ahmed Yousef, had immediately gone to JFK airport to fly t0 Pakistan. Before leaving, he phoned the Associated Press and claimed responsibility for the bombing in the name of the Arab Liberation Army. In fact, he was one of Osama bin Laden’s top military lieutenants firing the opening salvo of a total war against the U.S…

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