Would a Desperate Gadhafi Resort to Terrorism?

Experts think it's unlikely, but 'a madman's a madman'
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 21, 2011 10:23 AM CDT
Would a Desperate Gadhafi Resort to Terrorism?
Counterterrorism experts are keeping an eye on Moammar Gadhafi in case the Libyan leader returns to using terrorism.   (AP Photo/RTP Portugal TV)

With Moammar Gadhafi's stockpiles of mustard gas and high explosives and past ties to terrorist acts, US intelligence agencies are on alert for signs that the Libyan leader could be thinking of striking Western targets, reports the Wall Street Journal. Terrorism experts say that for now, the odds are low, as Gadhafi is more concerned with his immediate survival. "We haven't seen any intelligence yet," said a senior US counterterrorism official. "That being said, a madman's a madman."

A larger worry, say intelligence experts, is what Gadhafi will do if he manages to hold on to power but remains isolated and cut off. "This is a man who has no conscience," said Hillary Clinton during a recent trip to Tunisia. "If he stays, we can't predict what he will do." Intelligence officials also downplayed the potential for Gadhafi to team up with al-Qaeda, citing Gadhafi's work with the CIA to crack down on the terrorist organization; one official adds that, on the flip side, al-Qaeda is too ideologically "principled" to work with Gadhafi. (More Moammar Gadhafi stories.)

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