By William Tucker
Chief Correspondent for In Homeland Security
No sooner had Russian president Vladimir Putin referred to the Olympics security as a “ring of steel,” had police issued a notice that they were seeking an alleged suicide bomber that may already be in Sochi. The woman is known to law enforcement and is described as a widow to a fallen militant most likely related to the notorious Black Widows of the Caucasus emirate. Russia issues these notices on occasion and they shouldn’t be viewed strictly through the prism of the upcoming Olympics. With most of Moscow’s public attention focused on the international gaming event, privately there is the ever present focus on North Caucasus militancy as a whole. In other words, despite the numerous threats made by the Caucasus Emirate, most recently in a martyrdom video, there are other targets of opportunity that concern Russia. Transit hubs in nearby Volgograd have not garnered the same level of security as Sochi itself, though there has been an increase in the security presence. Additionally, Russian forces have taken measures in the North Caucasus – notably Dagestan and Ingushetia – as a way to head off any potential attack before it begins. All told, the militant threat to the Olympics is very real, but we cannot limit our focus as targets of opportunity may reveal themselves in other areas.
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