To Catch A Bombmaker Analysis

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Dillow’s focus on bomb making falls short of the mark
Clay Dillow’s October 2015 article in Popular Science “To Catch a Bombmaker” explores how FBI forensic skills have been developed since 2003 to benefit United States forces fighting bomb making foreign insurgents. Dillow tells the story of how a small lab at the Marine Corps Base at Quantico has used FBI analytical data to link more than 2,700 suspects to possible terrorist activities, adding more than 350 people to the terrorist watch list. Dillow’s purpose was to reveal how detective skills have evolved to address a growing number of homemade bombs threats to the United States. While the article examines many one case in which insurgents are nabbed, information is not shared on how forensic data alone may not be enough to tell a more balanced story about bomb makers. Dillow writes an article of how one bomber is stopped, but the narrative falls short of offering a deeper account of how effective our efforts have been to stop terrorists in their tracks.
Still overall, Dillow’s article
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has used forensics to demonstrate how the government has made progress with “connecting the dots” in finding and stopping a bomb making terrorist-- an example that took millions of dollars and man hours to catch one man and send him to jail for 40 years. The story “To Catch a Bombmaker” is sketchy even though the author seems to have a surplus of facts and dates to share with his readers. Dillow’s article fails to bring an in-depth understanding of what catching a bomber is about. He omits major pieces of the story while focusing on well-known cops and robbers techniques featured on popular television shows. While at certain points Dillow’s story is compelling, the article looks at off-the-shelf forensic but lacks the insight to shed light on the human drama and so the real driving force beneath Dillow’s facts and figures require unexplored and unexplained in this
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