A recent internal FBI report warns federal, state, and local authorities to be alert for a potential new tool in the jihad terror arsenal – the placing of suspicious, but harmless, bags in public places to inspire fear, disrupt public transportation, and tie up police and bomb squads. The so called “battle of suspicious bags” was encouraged by an unknown poster to a known jihadi Web site. In mid-May, the poster suggested an “invasions suspicious bags (sic)” in “the heart of Washington D.C. and New York.” The bags would contain not bombs, but innocuous items, a tactic that has been used by other political extremists in the U.S. in the recent past. “The stated goal of the campaign,” said the report, “was to exploit desensitization of first responders caused by response fatigue to suspicious, but harmless items.” The FBI report did not include the full text of the jihadi forum post. The poster’s credibility was not known, but the site where the information was posted was listed as a “known jihadi Web site.”

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