Giuliani: American interests are under siege

Former New York City mayor on foiled terror plot


This is a rush transcript from "Your World," October 17, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

NEIL CAVUTO, HOST OF "YOUR WORLD": All right, a court hearing expected any moment now for the 21-year-old suspect accused of plotting to blow up the New York Federal Reserve Bank with a 1,000-pound bomb. Authorities are labeling it a suicide mission.

The suspect in a video statement saying -- and I'm quoting here -- "We will not stop until we attain victory of martyrdom."

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani on the phone with us right now.

Mayor, so much we don't know. This much we do, Lower Manhattan again. What do you think?

RUDOLPH GIULIANI (R), FORMER NEW YORK CITY MAYOR: Well, I think this is a real wake up call to us that we cannot be complacent, as Commissioner Kelly pointed out in his press statement.

He pointed out that there have been up to 15 plots since September 11 to attack targets in New York City, whether it is the Federal Reserve now, the Brooklyn Bridge, the New York Stock Exchange, Citicorp Center.

This one is a really serious one. This guy was down there with the bomb ready to set it off. And he had a plan B, which was, if the bomb didn't work, he was going to do a suicide attack and try to kill as many people, hopefully some women and children as well. And the only reason it didn't work is because he happened to run into an FBI operative working who was working undercover as an Al Qaeda representative. So, when he went to the Al Qaeda representative, it turned out to be an undercover FBI agent. So the FBI and the joint terrorism task force that included the NYPD were on top of it.

But had he gone to someone other than an undercover operative, we might have seen a horrible attack today, with many innocent people killed. What it underscores is Al Qaeda is not dead. Al Qaeda is not gone.

Killing bin Laden, yes, it was an important act, but it hasn't made the world safe from Islamic extremist terrorism. In fact, if anything, it seems to me in the last couple of months things have gotten a lot more dangerous, when you combine what happened in Libya, when you combine what is happening in Afghanistan, with our people being killed in Afghanistan, getting killed there by Afghanis. I think things have gotten more dangerous.

CAVUTO: Do you think that there was and always is to terrorists or terrorist wannabes, Usama bin Laden wannabes, that even though he is dead, there is this bubbling hornet's nest of hundreds if not thousands of bin Laden wannabes who want to either avenge his murder or finish his work, and New York, Lower Manhattan in particular, with all the money and with all the status and with all the very personification of capitalism that it engenders, will always be that target?

GIULIANI: Yes, unfortunately. I wish I could say something else, but I think Mayor Bloomberg and Commissioner Kelly will tell you the same thing.

New York City is unfortunately prime target A-number one. It doesn't mean it is the only target. It would be a real mistake to think that, because Washington, D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, these all could be targets. Plus, we are targets overseas. Look what happened to our Libyan ambassador and three other people.

American interests are under siege by Islamic extremist terrorists. And it's -- yes, it a -- in this particular case, it looks like one person, but this guy had, according to the press release I read, connections with an Al Qaeda operative. He thought he was dealing with an Al Qaeda operative. Luckily, he was dealing with an FBI undercover person, an FBI informant or undercover person.

And it is not as disconnected as it seems. It all comes out of one big movement called jihadism, called Islamic extremist terrorism. That is exactly what Major Hasan was doing a few years ago, although, unfortunately, the administration we have in Washington described it as workplace violence.

CAVUTO: Mayor, thank you very, very much.

In this particular suspect's case, he shouted those jihadist views on the Internet for all to see, and the FBI to note.

Mayor, thank you very, very much. We will keep monitoring this.

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