January 04, 2010

Abdul Farouk Abdulmutallab, or The 'Yeah, Whatever' School of Counterterrorism

December 28, 2009
I'd like to be able to say with confidence that if this had happened in the USA, if Abdul's dad had walked into his local FBI office and told an agent that his kid was radicalized and was last known to be Yemen and had cut off all contact with the family, that this case would have been handled differently. In reality it probably depends on the particular office, and whether the analyst the matter was referred to understands that Yemen truly is the Waziristan of Arabia.
In any event, whatever can be uncovered about Abdul after he tried to bring down NW Flight 253 could likely have been uncovered prior to his boarding the flight. If the current rules don't allow such an investigation to occur, they need to change. And to the extent current leadership in the various agencies discourage the pursuit of such leads, those people need to leave - preferably on a commercial airline flight.
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My preliminary bibliography is here...

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