Remarkably, a terrorist attack on the US electric infrastructure occurred on April 16, 2013, but it was “hushed up” until the Wall Street Journal and Fox News did stories about this attack. According to the Fox News report (first link), a California substation was attacked during a 52 minute “sniper attack” which knocked out 17 transformers during the hail of bullets. It took 27 days to repair the damage, but electrical companies were able to re-route power so no cities lost electrical power during the attack.
Why wasn’t this attack on American electrical infrastructure reported till now? Why was it “hushed up?’ So people wouldn’t panic? I would also like to ask why whoever these terrorists were could open fire at an electric substation for almost an hour and no one came to resist or repel them? Perhaps the government didn’t want people to realize how utterly unprepared the federal, state and local agencies are to protect vital US infrastructures.
The second link connects to the Wall Street Journal story about the attack, but it appears to need subscriber access to read the story.
The first link reports “the FBI doesn’t think the incident was a terror attack.” Excuse me, but that assertion seems to be either an example of incredible denial of the obvious or a PR effort to deny the obvious. A former head of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission didn’t have any trouble calling it a terrorist attack. Indeed, he called it “the most significant incident of domestic terrorism involving the US power grid that has ever occurred.” Apparently the attackers got away as no arrests have been reported. Please read the report and decide for yourself if this was a professional terrorist attack or not. I believe it obviously was one, and that this attack may have been an effort to see how successful such an attack would be and how long it would take for authorities to send soldiers or SWAT teams to defend the facility being attacked. Perhaps the next attack planned by these terrorists who attacked us on our own soil will consist of a score of such simultaneous attacks, not just one to see if they can take down a major city’s electrical supply via such a low-tech effort.
Maybe it is time for a reallocation of federal dollars to better protect Americans from attacks that could easily come and quit spending dollars on attacks that will never happen. For example, I think it is self-evident that no one will ever again hijack a plane with mere box cutters. It seems self-evident that the US government needs to have the Dept. of Homeland Security and the TSA budgets changed to spend far less time having people strip off their belts and shoes at airports and send their agents out to guard US electric substations, water supply facilities, natural gas pumping stations , interstate highway bridges over major rivers, etc. Private infrastructure and utility companies obviously need to hire their own security as well to protect their facilities. The last link reminds us that US infrastructures are also vulnerable to cyber-attacks which could shut them down. Terrorists or state-sponsored hackers sitting at computer terminals may be able to do far worse damage than terrorists pumping bullets into US electrical substations.