US officials need to be on high alert for potential terror attacks on July 4

If preventing a terrorist attack in the United States is a matter of connecting the dots, Americans have plenty to fear with the Independence Day holiday just days away. Deadly “dots” have appeared in at least six other countries during the past few days.

Dozens were killed in bomb attacks in Chad and Kuwait. A gunman massacred more, including British tourists, at a Tunisian beach. Egypt’s state prosecutor died in a bomb attack. French police arrested a man with ties to Islamic extremists after he beheaded another man. Pakistani authorities killed four terrorists and arrested two after raiding a cache of weapons meant for use in an attack.

This is far too many “dots” to be a coincidence. Clearly, terrorist leaders are urging their followers to ramp up the level of brutality worldwide. Both organized extremist cells and “lone wolf” sympathizers are being urged to act.

It would be wishful thinking to believe Americans, both here and abroad, are not on the target list. A successful attack on July 4 would have propaganda value for the terrorists.

U.S. officials should be on the highest alert, then – to break the chain of “dots” before it reaches us. A lackadaisical attitude such as that which allowed the Sept. 11, 2012 assault on our diplomatic compound in Benghazi to succeed could have truly catastrophic results.