We have a new winner — or more accurately loser — in the Florida Man Sweepstakes. ABC News reports that Vicente Solano will appear in court today after his arrest on Friday for an ISIS-inspired plot to bomb a Sweetwater mall. The FBI alleges that Solano tried to assemble and detonate a bomb after posting pro-ISIS videos and statements on social media, but that an informant tipped off the feds before he could pull it off:
The Miami Herald broke the story over the weekend:
A Miami man suspected of being inspired by Islamic extremists was arrested Friday night on a charge of attempting to blow up a bomb at the Dolphin Mall by FBI counter-terrorism agents in an undercover operation.
Vicente Solano, who acted alone, was communicating with a confidential informant who tipped off the FBI-led Joint Terrorism Task Force about his alleged plot to carry out a weapons of mass destruction attack on the sprawling mall in Sweetwater, according to authorities.
Before the planned bombing attack, Solano made pro-Islamic State videos, authorities said. But there is no indication he was directed by ISIS terrorists.
The case looks similar to others in the past, including an Oklahoma plot revealed in August that had a much different motivation. In both cases, the FBI got tips from an informant and worked their way into a position where they supplied the material for the bomb. With Jerry Varnell’s “Three Percenter” plot, the FBI ensured that the device would be non-functional but still got the suspect to commit to an overt terrorist act in his attempt to detonate it. It’s probably a good assumption that they ran the same playbook with Solano, although we’ll see the indictment soon enough to get the specifics of the allegation.
This case demonstrates that while we have ISIS on the run now, its influence will take longer to fade. For the past year-plus, the group has been losing battle after battle, and now its social-media influencers have begun reverting to room temperature or have been captured by Syrian and Iraqi forces. The effects of their propaganda on dead-enders here and in other Western countries will linger for quite a while longer than the group itself will. Even having their so-called “caliphate” destroyed along with the loss of their supposedly prophetic conquests such as Dabiq will take a long time to settle into the psyche of the psychopaths that comprise ISIS and its wanna-be jihadis.
It also reminds us of the dangerous inspiration a return of ISIS would be. This is the time to crush them utterly, not to shift focus away and lose the thread of this fight once again. Otherwise, we’ll only encourage another battalion of boobs to pledge their loyalty by targeting other American civilians. This time we need to finish the job.