“Specific and Credible”, choosing words carefully

wgh headshot



With the recent horrific events of Paris, and now San Bernardino, on everyone’s mind, it’s reassuring that our leaders are continuing vigilance against terror threats during the holiday season.

Maybe I am just being paranoid, but what bothers me is that the official message for the holiday season in the U.S. was that there are no “specific and credible” threats known.  So now I am feeling relaxed and joyful and comfortable and secure and my heart palpitations are less, but wait, a thought has jumped my synaptic bridge.  The word “and” was used.

Now I suppose that it’s just a tiny little word that one would hardly take notice, but “and” is still there.  It’s not like Amos and Andy, or Martin and Lewis, or Captain and Tennille.  It’s a word that joins “specific” and “credible”.  When it comes to terrorism, ISIS is not the “JV” team, as POTUS described.  They are dangerous “and” real.

What we should be paying attention to is that the message was specific “and” credible.  So are there specific and not so credible, kind of specific and sort of credible, specific and hardly credible.  Were the recent attacks in Paris reported to counter-terrorism units prior to the attack specific and credible?

Sofrep.com reporter, Jack Murphy, reported on Nov. 13, 2015, that military grade explosives were stolen from a French military armory months prior.  He also noted that French National Police were meeting with German BKA federal police and BND federal intelligence service, prior to the Paris attacks.  So I wonder, was the threat specific “and” credible, or just sort of specific “and” kind of credible.

Should the public be warned ahead of time in order for the common citizen to be extra vigilant in areas of soft targets?  For those is Paris, could it have made a difference in saving lives?  In the U.S., can it make a difference to prevent loss of life?  Although “and” is a small word, it can make a “big” difference.

Now with the horrific event of San Bernardino, everyone needs to be even more vigilant as the initial information surrounding the attackers appears to include a possibility of radicalization.  Was this event known but one that was  not credible or specific?


Leave a Reply