Intel officials; terrorist attack 'certain'

Rick Moran
One of the problems with politicizing the War on Terror is that when government officials make statements like an attack is "certain," it's hard to know whether they actually have actionable intel that points to that conclusion or whether they are simply covering their behinds.

In fact, according to this story in The Hill by Jordy Yager, the feds have had no warning of any specific plot:

CIA Director Leon Panetta said the foremost risk was of another al Qaeda attack using recruits that have relatively low or "clean" profiles that are hard to detect."The biggest threat is not so much that we face an attack like 9/11," said Panetta. "It is that al Qaeda is adapting its methods in ways that oftentimes make it difficult to detect."

Panetta's warning came at the Senate Intelligence Committee's annual threat assessment hearing.

It was echoed by Blair, FBI Director Robert Mueller, acting U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Intelligence and Research John Dinger, and the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency Lt. Gen. Ronald L. Burgess, Jr.

While no one referenced specific plots against the U.S., all of the officials agreed with Blair that they were "certain" another attempt would be made in the next three to six months.

Panetta pointed to the recent failed attack that occurred on a Christmas Day flight headed to Detroit. Intelligence officers were warned about the suspected terrorist but due to a failure to "connect the dots" in a timely fashion and a profile that raised no inherent red-flags, he was able to fly under the radar.

"Obviously, they decided to make use of someone like that within a very short period of time," Panetta said.

In other words, they are no more "certain" of an attack taking place than the Bush administration was about 9/11.

The difference will be that if there is a terrorist attack, these bureaucrats will be able to say "I told ya so."

This is the state of the "War on Terror" - or whatever the Obama administration is calling it - today in America. There may not be much dot connecting, but they have the bureaucratic CYA game down cold.


One of the problems with politicizing the War on Terror is that when government officials make statements like an attack is "certain," it's hard to know whether they actually have actionable intel that points to that conclusion or whether they are simply covering their behinds.

In fact, according to this story in The Hill by Jordy Yager, the feds have had no warning of any specific plot:

CIA Director Leon Panetta said the foremost risk was of another al Qaeda attack using recruits that have relatively low or "clean" profiles that are hard to detect.

"The biggest threat is not so much that we face an attack like 9/11," said Panetta. "It is that al Qaeda is adapting its methods in ways that oftentimes make it difficult to detect."

Panetta's warning came at the Senate Intelligence Committee's annual threat assessment hearing.

It was echoed by Blair, FBI Director Robert Mueller, acting U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Intelligence and Research John Dinger, and the director of the Defense Intelligence Agency Lt. Gen. Ronald L. Burgess, Jr.

While no one referenced specific plots against the U.S., all of the officials agreed with Blair that they were "certain" another attempt would be made in the next three to six months.

Panetta pointed to the recent failed attack that occurred on a Christmas Day flight headed to Detroit. Intelligence officers were warned about the suspected terrorist but due to a failure to "connect the dots" in a timely fashion and a profile that raised no inherent red-flags, he was able to fly under the radar.

"Obviously, they decided to make use of someone like that within a very short period of time," Panetta said.

In other words, they are no more "certain" of an attack taking place than the Bush administration was about 9/11.

The difference will be that if there is a terrorist attack, these bureaucrats will be able to say "I told ya so."

This is the state of the "War on Terror" - or whatever the Obama administration is calling it - today in America. There may not be much dot connecting, but they have the bureaucratic CYA game down cold.