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"Lone-wolf threat feared at Vancouver Olympics"

Lone-wolf threat feared at Vancouver Olympics

Authorities see single terrorist as a key threat

Stewart Bell, National Post Published: Thursday, November 27, 2008

Ward Perrin/Canwest News Service

A federal study of terrorist threats to Olympic facilities in
Vancouver has raised the spectre of an attack by a "lone wolf," like
the anti-abortionist who struck during the 1996 Atlanta games.

The lone-wolf scenario is one of four terrorist threats listed in the
government intelligence assessment, a copy of which was obtained by
the National Post under the Access to Information Act.

"Lone-wolf attackers are individuals inspired by a variety of
ideological motivators or terrorist ideologies to conduct attacks
independently," says the July, 2008, report marked Unclassified, For
Official Use Only.

In 1996, Eric Rudolph detonated a large pipe bomb at Central Olympic
Park in Atlanta, killing one and injuring more than 100.

He said later he was angry at the government of the United States for
sanctioning "abortion on demand."

"Although this facility was outside the official Olympic secured
perimeter, it was a facility associated with the Olympics and the
attack was during an Olympic-related event," the report says.

"However, this attack was not aimed at the Olympics specifically, but
rather at the concentrated group of people."

The other "lone-wolf " incidents listed in the report are the 2006
shootings at Dawson College in Montreal, the 1995 Oklahoma City
bombing and the 1985 assault on the Quebec National Assembly, but it
does not explain how or why a lone wolf might attack the 2010 Olympics.

Also identified as threats to the Olympic venues are al-Qaeda, "al-
Qaeda-inspired terrorists" and "domestic non-Islamist extremist groups."

The report does not name any domestic groups, although it specifically
mentions anarchists.

Canada is spending $400-million to $1-billion on security for the 2010
Winter Games in Vancouver and Whistler, fearing terrorists might
target the event.

"There's something about the magnitude of the Olympic Games that seems
to attract kooks and determined groups, or people that want to make
public statements," said Peter St. John, who teaches intelligence,
insurgency and terrorism at the University of Manitoba.

"If you can catch an Olympics off guard and ... do something
spectacular, it's a way of getting your message across. And just
Olympics after Olympics have attracted this."

The report was written by the Integrated Threat Assessment Centre, an
Ottawabased agency made up of representatives from CSIS, the RCMP, the
Armed Forces and others. It was set up after the 9/11 attacks to
monitor threats to Canada's security.

Sections of the document were cut from the version made available to
the Post on grounds they related to "efforts of Canada towards
detecting, preventing or suppressing subversive or hostile activities."

It notes that "skirmishes" with Vancouver police took place at the
unveiling of the Olympic clock and that on four occasions, rocks had
smashed the windows of branches of the Royal Bank of Canada, a major
sponsor of the games.

"Extremist elements have publicly stated their intent to continue acts
of protest and possible violence against both the Olympics and
commercial symbols they perceive to represent the 2010 Winter Games,"
the report says.

Chris Shaw, spokesman for 2010 Watch, a self-described watchdog of the
Games, said security agencies are hyping the threat of terrorism and
that while anti-Olympic protesters might cause some embarrassment,
violence is not on the agenda.



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