On August 6, 1974, a bomb exploded at Los Angeles International Airport, killing three people and injuring thirty-five others. It was the first time an airport had been bombed anywhere in the world. A few days later, police recovered a cassette tape containing a chilling message: “This first bomb was marked with the letter A, which stands for Airport,” said a voice. “The second bomb will be associated with the letter L, the third with the letter I, etc., until our name has been written on the face of this nation in blood.” In The Alphabet Bomber: A Lone Wolf Terrorist Ahead of His Time, internationally renowned terrorism expert Jeffrey D. Simon tells the gripping tale of Muharem Kurbegovic, a bright but emotionally disturbed Yugoslav immigrant who single-handedly brought Los Angeles to a standstill during the summer of 1974. He had conjured up the fictitious group “Aliens of America,” but it was soon discovered that he acted alone in a one-man war against government and society. The story of the Alphabet Bomber is about an extraordinary manhunt to find an elusive killer, a dogged prosecutor determined to bring him to justice, a pioneering female judge, and a devious mastermind whose heinous crimes foreshadowed the ominous threats we face today from lone wolf terrorists.
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About the Author
Jeffrey D. Simon, PhD, is president of Political Risk Assessment Company Inc., a security and terrorism research consulting company, and is a former analyst for the RAND Corporation. He is the author of The Terrorist Trap: America’s Experience with Terrorism and Lone Wolf Terrorism: Understanding the Growing Threat. He is a visiting lecturer in the Department of Political Science at UCLA; has been interviewed about terrorism on CNN, CBS Sunday Morning, FOX News Channel, MSNBC, and NPR; and has been quoted in the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Los Angeles Times. His writings on terrorism have appeared in many publications, including the Journal of the American Medical Association and Foreign Policy.
Table of Contents
List of Illustrations Acknowledgments Introduction 1. The Making of a Terrorist 2. Until Our Name Has Been Written on the Face of This Nation in Blood 3. A City in Fear 4. The Homemade Explosives Factory 5. I Shall Return! 6. Crazy Like a Fox? 7. What the Story of the Alphabet Bomber Can Teach Us 8. It’s a Horrible Shame What He’s Done with His Life Notes Bibliography Index