Times Square Bomb Would Have Killed Thousands: FBI

'Biggest thing since 9/11'—if Shahzad had built it right
By Jane Yager,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 20, 2010 7:58 AM CDT
In this May 2, 2010 file image, a police officer approaches the vehicle containing a car bomb, which stands with the door open, and reaches down to lift a red canister on the roadway in Times Square.   (AP Photo/APTV, File)
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(Newser) – If Faisal Shahzad had built his bomb the way he planned to, thousands would have died as the force from his exploding SUV turned nearby vehicles into a spray of razor-sharp projectiles and surrounding buildings' windows into a rainfall of glass shards. Others would have been trampled to death running away in the ensuing panic. That's what the FBI found in a simulation carried out secretly in Pennsylvania last month, the New York Post reports.

"It would have been the biggest thing ever to happen in this country since Sept. 11," a law enforcement source said. "It definitely would have been bigger than Oklahoma City." But while the FBI followed Shahzad's original plans in its secret test, the failed Times Square bomber cut corners, substituting cheaper and less effective components. "This attempt failed," one source said. "But no one thinks this is the only time someone is going to try to blow something up in Times Square."

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