BLUF: Low likelihood of associated threats outside of Tennessee,  low to moderate likelihood of follow on attacks within state within next 7 days.

We hope everyone enjoyed time with their families and friends this holiday weekend. With further data coming in and Alpha Recon analysis, it appears as though the bomber did, in fact, commit suicide during the act. Given this fact and the music/message playing before the act itself and the avoidance of mass casualties, the bomber likely martyred himself as part of a message to society/government or a direct attack or as part of a greater movement.

The suicide portion of this is significant. It prevents the gathering of information from the perpetrator and shows great personal sacrifice to a cause. The damage done to communication networks, although not massive, sent a clear message of vulnerability to those protecting and reliant on the infrastructure. The resulting losses and disruptions will likely not be disclosed publicly. There are unconfirmed reports of another truck with similar music playing in another part of the state near Nashville. More to follow on this. Although initial reports indicated signs of multi-party coordination, this event could be isolated to a small group of people or even just the bomber himself.

The lack of sophistication in the plan and the attack itself (parked RV in parking lot leading up to attack) points to an act of passion and personal belief although this passion and zeal could be used by extremist groups to accomplish political ends. The bomber obviously learned a lot about homemade explosives and more might come out about the source of that training and any cooperation. There is a lower probability of state actor or intelligence service involvement unless the event was being used as a distraction, test, false flag, hit, or “dry run.” Worst case, the bomber was likely part of a small group of ideologues and decided to sacrifice his life to this cause. It should not be overlooked that Wikileaks released information recently and there have been renewed calls for Assange’s pardon.

We have narrowed down motive possibilities to combinations of the following:

  1. Frustration with perceived US government spying and citizen data collection. It is possible that Google geospatial imagery and AI was used to find the RV in the first place while waiting for DNA results.
  2. Frustration with perceived 5G and related telecommunication threats to society.
  3. Targeted data and or key infrastructure destruction on behalf of a movement /organization.
  4. Vulnerability assessment. Although less likely, he could have been pointing to critical vulnerabilities for follow on actions or as a warning.
  5. Bomber was a witting pawn and part of a larger targeted political, asset, or kinetic operation.
  6. Depression and/or frustration with lock downs and perceived infringement of freedom.
  7. Frustration over social, economic, or racial injustices.

Stay wary of unlikely conspiracy theories about missile strikes and internal government warfare. The likelihood of this attack attempting to “erase” or destroy specific evidence on servers shows a misunderstanding of how data is stored, copied, and encrypted over space and time. Looking at owners of nearby buildings and investors (potential targets or interested parties) is always part of the analysis, but drawing conclusions based on this alone often leads to misunderstandings and false premises.  Intelligence work is based on constant and emerging data to help connect the dots. Understanding changes over time. Conspiracies emerge when data is sparse or controlled and imaginations are plenty.  

Although Alpha Recon hopes for a better 2021, there are indications that January will be a violent and disruptive month. As lock downs continue, economic pressure mounts, political tensions rise, and geopolitical events impact all of the above, similar and different types of political attacks may continue throughout the country and larger cities. Civil disobedience will not be contained indefinitely and become more organized. Crime will also increase on a large scale.

It is highly recommended that your family and business invest in intelligence capabilities outside of mainstream media reporting. This is a wake up call, not meant to scare everyone, but a plea to be better prepared with the earliest indications of threats to maximize options and response. We are offering free monitoring of threats and early warning in Denver as part of a market analysis project. Contact us for more information.