Fighting Al Qaeda With Words On Paper And TV Talking Points


A true team effort at CYA damage control if there ever was one. Nine pages of PDF and a half hour of talking later . . . are we any safer?


Remarks by the President on Strengthening Intelligence and Aviation Security


Briefing by Homeland Security Secretary Napolitano, Assistant to the President for Counterterrorism and Homeland Security Brennan, and Press Secretary Gibbs

Summary of the White House Review of the December 25, 2009 Attempted Terrorist Attack

Attempted Terrorist Attack on December 25, 2009: Intelligence, Screening, and Watchlisting System Corrective Actions

Obama Orders Security Fix

President Barack Obama ordered his top intelligence chiefs Thursday to patch gaps in the way terrorism intelligence is distributed, analyzed and checked against watch lists used to identify potential attackers bound for the U.S.

It was his strongest and most detailed response to the Christmas Day attempt to blow up an airliner bound for Detroit. “We are at war,” the president said. “We are at war with al Qaeda.”

The White House also released details on how the alleged suspect, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, slipped through the intelligence net, used cash to purchase a one-way ticket and, carrying a bomb sewn into his underwear, boarded a Northwest Airlines flight with almost 300 passengers and crew.

A “series of human errors” included the “delayed dissemination of a finished intelligence report” that might have helped intelligence analysts connect the dots and prevent the attempted bombing, according to an unclassified version of the White House review of the attempted Christmas attack. The “finished report,” prepared by the Central Intelligence Agency, contained background on Mr. Abdulmutallab, officials said.

See also:
U.S. was more focused on al-Qaeda’s plans abroad than for homeland, report on airline bomb plot finds
Obama Releases Security Review of Attempted Bombing
White House releases intelligence review of attempted Christmas attack
Travelers react to Obama’s security review
Obama Orders Improvements in Security Policies
U.S. learned intelligence on airline attack suspect while he was en route
John Brennan: We failed on Christmas Day terrorist intelligence
What Surprised Brennan, Napolitano In Wake of Flight 253 Attack
The Daily Wrap: What We Learned About the Intelligence Failure
Factbox: Christmas Day bombing plot: Who knew what, when?

Personally, releasing nine pages of reports to the public and putting the Three Stooges on the TV to apologize and make excuses, while entertaining, doesn’t impress or reassure me and certainly does nothing to make Americans any safer. Until the government can actually keep terrorists off of commercial aircraft, it’ll still be primarily up to the flying public to stomp on the al Qaeda operatives when they try and explode their underwear. Talk is cheap, just do it.

/instead of wasting everybody’s time covering your ass with damage control on the TV, spend that time killing a few al Qaeda or at least trying to disrupt their networks and plots

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