Everyone knows that Al Quaida learned lessons and gained boldness from their recent attacks in Spain which turned the election. The big question is whether they think that a similar strike would work in their favor in the US? I personally don't think it would be a good strategy on their part just prior to the election. I think the kneejerk reaction of most Americans would be to re-elect Bush. However, an attack in NYC just prior to the Republican Convention would probably result in the defeat of George Bush. Here's why: 1) The Republicans would be forced to have a muted, respectful, somber tone in contrast to the Democratic Convention with its upbeat, forward looking, victorious tone. The Democrats would be quick on the draw to set up Republicans as "opportunists" if they even so much as tried to refer to such an attack as reason for voting for Bush. With the swing vote being comprised more of "feelers" than "thinkers", the images of Kerry celebrating with the throngs contrasted with Bush addressing a more quiet crowd would dramatically impact these voters. 2) If, as I heard reported today, such an attack is aimed at the NYC financial district, even a small bomb could effectively stall the economic recovery. And it would be early enough for "fresh economic data" to roll in the few weeks leading up to the election which would point to a new economic "down-turn". Bush would once again be cast as a "liar" propping up false data to try and convince people the economy is recovering. 3) The Democrats would blame the Republican Party and the Bush administration for "diverting" normal security measures in the financial district to help protect the area around the Convention, even if it is not true. Thus, many frustrated, grieving Americans would vent their anger on the Bush administration, particularly the surviving family members of victims (NYC is mostly democtratic territory). One thing is sure, Al Quaida is not a bunch of dummies. I'm sure they have carefully thought through if an attack, and what kind of attack, would help bring about the defeat of George Bush. And one thing I know for sure: They want to be able to take credit for his defeat!! This would do more than a hundred car bombs in Baghdad to demonstrate their power of influence in world affairs. The only way that we can beat them at their own game would be to put forth this theory ahead of time so that people can see it coming. In making such an attack strategy known ahead of time, if they do succeed, the fact that it was so predictable might well cause the exact opposite reaction and cause people to see that there is a reason why they want George Bush defeated. In the end, it might even be the very thing that swings the election in his favor.