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January 07, 2010

Obama Terrorism Statement UPDATE: "We are war. We are at war with al Qaeda" UPDATE x2: US Gov't Had Enough Information To Have Potentially Stopped Attack

Above the fold update:

Gabe sends along a link to the White House review (pdf).

Bottom line is on page 2 of the file they had enough information to have stopped this guy from getting on the plane and they simply didn't.

Right now Brennan and Napolitano are going through the report.

I will say in all honesty, this is an almost impossible task. The old story is the terrorists only have to succeed once while the defenders have to be right all the time. That's a hell of a task.

Still, in this case they seem to have pretty much have had as much information and leads as they are likely to get (the guys dad, the fact he'd been to Yemen, the one way ticket paid for in cash, no luggage, etc). If they didn't flag this guy, I'm not sure who they are getting.

Ordering people to do more of what they are doing or to do it better is simply political spin. There's always going to be a danger or even likelihood that given the amount of information that comes in and the size of the bureaucracy things are likely to fall through the cracks.

Brennan says the most shocking thing he learned is that AQAP is an off shoot of AQ main body in Pakistan and wanted to and was able to attack the US. Really? That shocked him?

Helen Thomas wants to know if the screening in Amsterdam was done by contractors and what was his motivation? Dumbest woman in the world.

Brennan says religion is at the heart of what AQ does but of course, it's a perversion of Islam.

Awesome...TSA was set to chat with the bomber when they landed.

Brennan says he gave Leiter permission to go on leave with his kid.

He also says AQAP was 'aspirational' in its desire to attack us. See, thing is when people say they are coming to kill you, it's best to assume they are and they can. Alas, that's not the Obama way. For the opposing (and correct) view, see Cheney's 1% Doctrine.

Unrelated...NBC's Savannah Gutherie is hot.

I'm sorry but why was Brennan so surprised that AQAP could get a guy on plane with a bomb? Seriously, how can this be a surprise? This is a group that got a guy in close enough to attack the head of Saudi intelligence. Getting on a plane is not a stretch from there.

Just a reminder...two weeks ago this was "a lone extremist" and now he's the leading edge of a dangerous and surprising new source of attacks. Why the hell did Obama pop off back in Hawaii? No one will call him on this but it shows you what his first and true instincts are...minimize the danger of Islamic attacks.

Original Post:

Right now on all the nets.

The NSC adviser says people will be shocked by what we hear.

Obama says we had the information but failed to connect it.

So far it sounds like he's saying, "I've directed we do things better". Ah well, if only we had thought of that sooner.

He says he's going to hold people accountable when they screw up but this time no one was directly responsible but the system failed. So, um, no one is held accountable if everyone is at fault? Ok.

"We are war. We are at war with al Qaeda". Well, that's new from this guy. Now goes on to say Muslims mostly reject al Qaeda.

Oh now is not the time for partisanship when it comes to national security. Apparently at one point it was a time for that but not now.

Actually, not a bad speech for Obama. Problem is his actions in treating this as a law enforcement problem doesn't track with his words.

BTW-if we are at war with al Qaeda as Obama just said, why are we sending them to civilian courts?

Again, better rhetoric but simply not matched by the actions of his administration.

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posted by DrewM. at 04:35 PM

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