Saturday, December 26, 2009

Official: U.S. Knew of Suspect for 2 Years

This refers to the ridiculous and insulting case of "terrorists" on board an airliner who tried to blow up the plane by setting off - don't laugh - firecrackers. Doesn't it strike you as - I don't know, suspicious? - that the government always seems to have prior knowledge of "terrorists" in their midst, and they just can't seem to motivate themselves to act on it? Now, of course, they will crack down harder on airline security, which means the TSA airport police state will drop the hammer on you.

    CBS News -

    An official briefed on the attack on a Detroit airliner said Saturday the U.S. has known for at least two years that the suspect in the attack could have terrorist ties.

    The official told The Associated Press that the suspect, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, has been on a list that includes people with known or suspected contact or ties to a terrorist or terrorist organization. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation is ongoing.

    The Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment list is maintained by the U.S. National Counterterrorism Center. It includes about 550,000 names.

    People on that list are not necessarily on the no-fly list. U.S. Rep. Peter King said Abdulmutallab was not on the no-fly list.

    King, the ranking Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee, said no federal air marshals were on the flights from Nigeria to Amsterdam and from Amsterdam to Detroit. Abdulmutallab did not go through full-body image screening at either airport, the congressman said.

    Democratic Rep. Bennie Thompson, the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, said Abdulmutallab would have been re-screened at the Amsterdam airport after his flight from Nigeria. Thompson and others say the Amsterdam airport has long had a good reputation for security.

    Thompson said he plans to hold a hearing in January about the incident.

    "It's still safe to fly," Thompson said.