Istanbul Bombing: Airport Attack Is Another Strike on a 'Soft Target' | NBC 10 Philadelphia
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Istanbul Bombing: Airport Attack Is Another Strike on a 'Soft Target'

It is difficult to defend public places against determined killers, experts say

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    Turkish security officers and ambulances gather outside Turkey's largest airport, Istanbul Ataturk, after it was hit by a suicide bomb attack on June 28, 2016 in Istanbul, Turkey.

    It's the type of scenario security experts dread: attackers blending in with the crowd at public places to carry out acts of mass murder.

    That scenario appears to have played out again Tuesday, this time at an Istanbul airport. 

    The ability to defend "soft targets" — places where it's relatively easy for a small group of terrorists to cause widespread and deadly devastation — remains elusive.

    In the U.S., security officials and experts have long worried that these types of places are extremely vulnerable.

    "If you have a determined terrorist who is willing to give up their life … it's almost impossible to prevent that across the board," John Pistole, a former administrator with the Transportation Security Administration, told NBC News in March.