BALTIMORE (WJZ) — The terrorists in London did not use explosives or guns. Rather, they used items that were easily accessible and picked a high profile target.
The latest ISIS-inspired attack in London shows how terrorists can make a big impact on a small scale.
“This is using everyday items: a van, a butcher’s knife,” says Michael Greenberger with University of Maryland School of Law. He’s the director of the Center for Health and Homeland Security.
“And we’re seeing this repeatedly. And the question is: are we letting these people slip through our grasp?” he says.
The terrorists picked a crowded and iconic spot to inflict maximum damage. Still, it wasn’t enough to discourage some Americans from traveling there.
“In all honesty, we have to have confidence in the security measures put in place. You can’t live in fear. You have to live your life,” says Robert Gallagher, an American traveling to London.
It could have happened anywhere. Maryland has long been on alert, with the proximity to the nation’s capital, and home to major transportation hubs.
“Yes, Baltimore could be a target, someplace in Maryland could be a target. The only thing we need to keep repeating to ourselves is Baltimore should be vigilant, and when you see something, say something,” says Greenberger.
In the past decade, more than half a dozen Marylanders have faced terrorism-related charges.
Howard County teen Mohammad Khalid had a full johns hopkins scholarship. He became the youngest person in the us sentenced for a terrorist plot. Antonio Martinez tried to blow up the Catonsville army recruiting center. And Owings Mills High grad Majid Khan helped bomb an Indonesian hotel.
And last year, a man who lived in Harford County was indicted after pledging alligiance to ISIS.
“When you look at an array of what you worry about, homegrown terrorism is at the very top,” says Greenberger.
Baltimore City police are especially vigilant in areas where large numbers of people gather, like here at the inner harbor. They say they have discussed the London terror attack, and are evaluating security.