Ashcroft and the FBI snookered

I’ve never opened a pit thread and I don’t expect this one to go very far. I just have to comment on Ashcroft’s recent warning of a major terror attack. According to this stroy the information came from a group that has no credibility in the intelligence community. That’s it; no profanity at all, just a sad shake of the head at the sheer incompetence of it all.

Why would the Attorney General announce a terrorism threat and not Homeland Security? Is Ashcroft bored?

Before you know it he’s going to have his own threat level color scheme.

“The threat level is yellow on the Homeland Security scale and blue on the Justice scale. The combined threat level is green. That is all.”

Maybe they all get to take turns. Next time, the Secretary of Education gets to announce it.

Or plaid, maybe.

Actually, this is creating a bunch of a stink. From what I heard, Ridge was “surprised” to hear about the latest warning.

The rabbithole goes deeper folks.

/tinfoil hat ON

This is not the first time Mr. Ashcroft has pulled a stunt like this. Remember when he went to Moscow and announced the arrest of Jose Padilla for plotting to blow up Washington D.C. with a dirty bomb? There was quite a stink about his showboating back then too.
There’s still quite a stink surrounding Padilla’s arrest: The Case of Jose Padilla: Imprisonment Without Trial or Charges

“ultra-cynical”? Lady, I do get into “super cynical” mode from time to time in these boards, the scary thing is that my super cynical alter ego has not been contradicted or found wrong, regarding the shenanigans of this administration. The sad thing is that only now the mainstream media is noticing.

That “credit” the terrorists got for changing the elections? I do think some pundits, some politicians, and Al-Queda are total nincompoops for claiming the terror attacks caused the people of Spain to vote that way, the main reason was not the attack, but the clumsy attempt to hide the evidence of who the real perpetrators of the attack were. In other words: the political goal of the ruling party was more important for the idiot Aznar than the security of the nation, who can trust that the security of the nation is in good hands, when the people in command are using the tools of state as their political toys?

And this stunt of Ashcroft is, IMO, close to what the former ruler of Spain tried to do when he blamed ETA for the attacks: The source for the info blaming ETA for the attack in Spain came from a partisan hack, this terror warning looks like is coming from a similarly partisan source, the elements might be good, but how the info was cobbled together, and the timing for the release stinks to high heaven.

Time to vote this, and other clowns out.

“Have you heard of the NO-CARB Diet for 2004?

NO C-heney
NO A-shcroft
NO R-umsfeld
NO B-ush
and “Absolutely NO RICE!””

I really don’t like having to be cynical about my own goverment. As a moderate non-partisan (convince me with sense, folks!), this kind of shit goes beyond routine tawdry politics, well into seriously-screwing-with-public-confidence territory.

This was predicatably a topic of bitter jokes at work today.* People were wishing one another a good holiday weekend, along with cynical speculations about 1. the weather and 2. the threat-color-du-jour. “Have a good holiday, provided it doesn’t rain and terrorists don’t set off a suitcase nuke. We’re at–what?–puce now?” Nobody actually took the warning seriously because nobody believed it. Not because the potential isn’t real; because they didn’t trust that those issuing the threat warnings knew what the fuck they were doing. That’s a pretty sad, scary state of affairs.

For all the hoopla over fighting terrorism, keeping the homeland safe, yadda yadda, how in the world do TPTB think think this kind of fiasco does anything but make the country more vulnerable?

  • I got really depressed when a meeting room full of heavy-hitter-money types–real deep pockets people, about as straight line as they come–mocked it too. They did it with very thin smiles, the ones that were smiling at all, but even they didn’t believe it.


I’m not changing the subject.

Doesn’t this go hand in hand with the Saudi’s announcing they’ll increase oil production, thereby lowering gas prices? As said in Woodward’s book.

Curiouser and curiouser.

Well, there are some Saudis looking to raise those prices:

Saudis attack militants holding 50 hostages:

“We’ve just received our combined threat level reports from the twenty seven different federal agencies that are releasing them. For the thirty second consecutive week, we are at Threat Level Muddy Brown.”

Anyone else thinking of The Wiz?

Now, if only we could get Ashcroft to ease on down, ease on down the rooooad!