Detroit terror incident

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US Found Out About Bomber's Terrorist Links as He Flew

Abdulmutallab was to be detained in Detroit

(Newser) - US authorities learned of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab’s links to Islamic extremists while the would-be bomber was aboard a Detroit-bound plane, the Los Angeles Times reports, and planned to question him when it landed. Intelligence officials have certainly gotten the chance—but only after passengers on Northwest Flight 253 stifled...

Abdulmutallab Is Indicted
 Abdulmutallab Is Indicted 

Abdulmutallab Is Indicted

Counts include attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction

(Newser) - A federal grand jury today indicted Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab on charges that he tried to blow up Detroit-bound Flight 253. The grand jury indicted the 23-year-old Nigerian on six counts, the most serious of which is the attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction. It carries a life sentence....

Muslim World Can Learn from Terror Suspect's Dad
Muslim World Can Learn from Terror Suspect's Dad

Muslim World Can Learn from Terror Suspect's Dad

It's time for Islam to shame suicide bombers: Friedman

(Newser) - The father of the failed underwear bomber set an example the rest of the Muslim world needs to live up to, writes Thomas Friedman. Alhaji Umaru Mutallab, by reporting his son's descent into radicalism to authorities, effectively admitted that his family system had broken down. And to defeat terrorism and...

Palin: US Needs a Leader, Not a 'Law Professor'

She calls President Obama's strategy on terror 'fatally flawed'

(Newser) - Sarah Palin weighed in on the nation's security today, calling President Obama's approach "fatally flawed" on her Facebook page . "The real nature of the terrorist threat requires a commander-in-chief, not a constitutional law professor," the Republican governor-turned-author writes. Among other things, she blasted the idea of giving...

Obama: Security Agencies Failed to Connect Dots

'We have to do better, and we will do better'

(Newser) - President Obama says the foiled Christmas Day airliner attack exposed "a potentially disastrous" security failure in which the US intelligence community had enough information to connect the dots ahead of time but didn't. The lapse didn't have to do with the collection of information but with the failure to...

US Halts Transfer of Gitmo Detainees to Yemen

Obama administration wary of sending al-Qaeda new recruits

(Newser) - The Obama administration has decided not to send any more detainees from the Guantanamo Bay detention center to Yemen. About 90 Yemenis remain at the facility, and half of them are cleared for release, but given the growing influence of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula—thought to be responsible for...

Subplots to Watch at Obama's Terror Meeting

How tough will the president be on himself and his staff?

(Newser) - President Obama meets with his security chiefs today to dissect the failed Christmas terror plot—and deflect criticism over his initial, tepid response. Politico breaks down the burning questions:
  • Do heads roll? Janet Napolitano and Michael Leiter have both been mentioned as possible sacrifices, but insiders increasingly doubt that Obama’

US Denies Brits Warned About Detroit Bomber

Downing Street made a mistake, White House says

(Newser) - The UK government made "a mistake" when it claimed that British intelligence about the Detroit bombing suspect was passed on to US authorities in 2008, says a White House source. Gordon Brown's office also seemed to be backpedaling from yesterday's claim that Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was included on a...

No-Fly List Expands as Obama Beefs Up Security

Prez will detail improvements to watch-list system today

(Newser) - In the midst of beefing up airport security after the Detroit terror attempt, the US is expanding passenger surveillance lists, adding "probably dozens" of names to the no-fly and watch lists, the White House tells the BBC . The new names have been moved to the lists from TIDE, the...

UK Gave US Detroit Suspect Intel: Gordon Brown

Abdulmutallab tried to contact extremists

(Newser) - Gordon Brown is denying allegations the UK failed to share intelligence on Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab with the US. The suspected Detroit plane bomber was included in a dossier of individuals who had made contact with extremists, and that dossier was shared with American intelligence authorities, the UK PM's spokesman said...

Obama Leaves Hawaii, Heads Back to Work
 Obama Leaves Hawaii, 
 Heads Back to Work 

Obama Leaves Hawaii, Heads Back to Work

But Detroit bomber, busy agenda made sure he never left

(Newser) - President Obama ended his Hawaiian vacation last night to return today to the Washington he never really escaped. Obama and his family boarded Air Force One for an overnight flight, capping off an 11-day trip that would be remembered more for an al-Qaeda affiliate's botched attempt to bring down a...

WH Terror Counsel: 'System Didn't Work'
 WH Terror 
 Didn't Work' 

WH Terror Counsel: 'System Didn't Work'

Napolitano's comment haunts your Sunday dial this week, too

(Newser) - Forget Janet Napolitano, the system that let a would-be Nigerian suicide bomber aboard a Detroit-bound flight didn't work, White House Counterterrorism Adviser John Brennan told State of the Union today—though "every other day the system has worked this year." "There was no smoking gun. There was...

US, UK Shut Yemen Embassies
 US, UK Shut Yemen Embassies 

US, UK Shut Yemen Embassies

Tensions escalate on Arabian Peninsula; UK jumps into fray

(Newser) - The US and Britain closed their embassies in Yemen today in the face of al-Qaeda threats, after both countries announced an increase in aid to the government to fight the terror group linked to the failed attempt to bomb a US airliner on Christmas. The White House counterterror chief said...

Ignore 'Privacy Ideologues,' We Need Body Scans
 Ignore 'Privacy Ideologues,' 
 We Need Body Scans 
Michael Chertoff

Ignore 'Privacy Ideologues,' We Need Body Scans

Passengers are at risk without them, says Michael Chertoff

(Newser) - For one former director of homeland security, it's a no-brainer: President Obama must ignore "privacy ideologues" and put full-body scanners at the nation's airports. Otherwise, it's just a matter of time before al-Qaeda strikes successfully with plastics explosives, writes Michael Chertoff. The notion that these imagers amount to "...

Obama's Terror Critics 'Hysterical' or Dead-On?
Obama's Terror Critics 'Hysterical' or Dead-On?
brooks vs. krauthammer

Obama's Terror Critics 'Hysterical' or Dead-On?

NYT, Post scribes have very different views on terror response

(Newser) - If only we lived in a "mature nation," writes David Brooks in the New York Times . That way, President Obama could have gone on TV after the Detroit terror scare and said, “Listen, we’re doing the best we can, but some terrorists are bound to get...

Obama Gets First Report on Detroit Terror Attempt

Prez gets answers to how Abdulmutallab boarded plane

(Newser) - As a first step in his effort to overhaul intelligence practices, President Obama will today receive a preliminary report on how exactly the Detroit bombing suspect managed to board a US-bound plane, along with recommendations on how to prevent a sequel. The reams of intelligence data that were combed through...

Nigerians Join Dutch in Using Full-Body Scans

Officials vow that nation won't be transit point for terrorists

(Newser) - Nigeria has joined the Netherlands in announcing plans to introduce full-body scans for air travelers. Officials plan to install the high-tech machines at the country's four major airports beginning next month. Detroit suspect Umar Faroul Abdulmutallab began his journey in Lagos, and experts say full-body scanning would have detected his...

US Plans Bomb 'Payback' Air Strikes in Yemen

Yemen vows to stamp out al-Qaeda, raids militant hideout

(Newser) - The US is planning fresh drone strikes on al-Qaeda leaders in Yemen in the wake of the attempted Detroit Christmas bombing. Officials say they are working to identify the militant leaders responsible for the "underwear bomber," and will strike any militant leaders are soon as they are located,...

Somali Caught in Nov. With Detroit-Type Bomb

US officials are now aware of incident and probing connections

(Newser) - A man tried to board a commercial airliner in Mogadishu last month carrying powdered chemicals, liquid, and a syringe that could have caused an explosion in a case bearing chilling similarities to the Christmas terrorist plot, officials say. The Somali man was arrested by African Union peacekeeping troops before the...

US OKs Dutch Use of Full Body Scanners

US flights will be scanned with new, modest version within 3 weeks

(Newser) - The Netherlands will immediately begin using full body scanners for flights heading to the US, according to an announcement that comes with a report today on the failed Christmas airline bombing. The US opposed their use previously because of privacy concerns, but the Dutch interior minister says that the Obama...

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