Belgian authorities questioned Paris attacker for only an hour over four days

Evidence continues to mount that Belgian authorities are clueless about protecting their citizens from terrorism. Yesterday, I wrote about how badly Belgian security had botched the investigation into activities of the terrorist who helped carry out the attacks in Paris. Salah Abdeslam was in the custody of Belgian police for 4 days and was questioned for less than an hour.

You won't believe the reason why.

Daily Mail:

Belgian police questioned prime terror suspect Salah Abdeslam for just one hour between his arrest on Friday and the devastating Brussels attacks four days later because he was 'tired', raising fears that they missed the chance to stop the atrocities.

In the latest in a long list of bungles, the hour-long interrogation at a Bruges prison on Saturday produced no intelligence about the impending carnage because investigators took a chronological approach, asking first about the Paris attacks in November.

This was in spite of the discovery of bomb making materials and Abdeslam's fingerprints at a Schaerbeek safe house days before and mounting evidence that the terror cell was active and ready to strike.

The interrogations were curtailed because Abdeslam was still recovering from surgery after being shot in the leg when he was arrested, a senior Belgian security official said on condition of anonymity.

'He seemed very tired and he had been operated on the day before,' the official told Politico. Another source added: 'They were not thinking about the possibilities of what happened on Tuesday morning.'

Abdeslam's lawyer, Sven Mary, confirmed how Europe's most dangerous terrorist had been treated with kid gloves by police, raising concerns that authorities missed the opportunity to prevent the Brussels atrocities that followed just days later.

It comes amid speculation in the Belgian media that Abdeslam was the mastermind behind the terror plots in Brussels, which killed 31 innocent people and injured hundreds more.

Belgian public broadcaster VRT said today that the fugitive was planning a multiple shooting and suicide bomb attack in the capital similar to those in Paris in November.

At the time of Abdeslam's capture, Belgian police were well aware that there were almost certainly other plots, other cells in the country who were in various stages of planning to carry out attacks. That they deferred to the "tired" terrorist and took their time questioning him for actionable intelligence is mind boggling.

US intel sources say that this attitude of nonchalance is present in most other countries of Europe. This leaves European governments in complete denial about the threat they are facing - a threat that grows daily as more terror cells are discovered and more terrorists found in their midst.

Islamic State has reportedly sent 400 fighters to Europe, bringing some urgency to the manhunts and raids. But if the rest of Europe takes the threat as cavalierly as the Belgian government appears to take it, the attacks will multiply and casualties will soar.