Terrorism threatens security, nation

Published 12:00 am Thursday, May 9, 2002

The arrest of 21-year-old Luke Helder late Tuesday brings resolution to a bizarre and frightening spate of pipe bombings.

The Minnesota resident confessed to the FBI that he made 24 pipe bombs out of tape, paper clips and Christmas tree bulbs, according to wire reports.

Eighteen of those bombs were placed in mailboxes in three Midwestern states; the other six were in Helder’s possession when he was arrested.

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Apparently, the college student was on a non-stop spree across the Midwest, driving from state to state and placing these bombs in mailboxes. While the last 10 were not rigged to detonate, the first eight were.

The bombings were particularly frightening in an America already on edge from the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks and the anthrax scare of late fall 2001.

But those bombings brought home a frightening point, as well – terrorism and threats can come from within our country’s borders

Mainstream America cannot comprehend the motives that would drive an individual to put pipe bombs in mailboxes, or fly a jet into a skyscraper, or even put deadly poison in the mail. Perhaps we will never fully understand those motives.

We can only react and, when possible, defend ourselves as best we can.

And, we can adjust to live in a heightened state of awareness, a heightened caution, that comes from the added threats to our security and our nation.


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