NBC news described the state of public knowledge about the terror threat that’s closed down 21 or more American embassies and consulates and which several other Western countries have emulated. “A meeting of the National Security Council chaired by Susan Rice was held at the White House Saturday evening to discuss the latest intelligence regarding the threat of an al Qaeda attack. There are different views among analysts — including whether a plot is already underway, with team members already selected, as reported Saturday by CBS. … There is no consensus on whether the plot is underway, officials told NBC News.”
The other way to put it was how Peter King summarized things: there ” is very specific information about the fact that there is a plot, that attacks are planned, but again it’s not certain as to where.” The world’s become like Watertown, according to Daniel Pipes. There’s a terrorist out there somewhere, but nobody’s quite sure where. So shelter in place, this time globally.
Notwithstanding the fact that the authorities publicly say they don’t have all the details, the “Intel community worried Obama administration disclosed too much about latest al Qaeda threat”.
Intelligence officials are dismayed that the administration provided so much detail on what prompted the closings, and that the disclosures could work against obtaining new information. Militants are now likely searching for the sources of the information to both the U.S. and Yemeni officials, and almost certainly will kill anyone they suspect of working with Western intelligence.
“There simply are not that many who would know about the attacks,” says one former high-ranking U.S. intelligence officer, “so it won’t be hard for al Qaeda leaders to pin-point the sources of information. Once that happens, they certainly won’t be working with us anymore.”
And all this uproar is before the hundreds of newly-freed al-Qaeda escapees get back to their clandestine cells. Bill Gertz thinks the recent escape of hundreds of hard core terrorists are “threat to the region”. Surely they are. But the jailbreaks were only a few weeks ago, meaning that the current threats to the embassy were probably plannedbefore the bust-outs. We ain’t seen nothing yet.
Does that mean the jailbreaks and the threats to the embassies are part of an al-Qaeda resurgence? Nope. TheChristian Science Monitor’s Mark Sappenfield quotes sources who suggest that the recent attacks suggest that al-Qaeda is dying. Don’t be misled. Things aren’t getting worse, they’re getting better, even if doesn’t look that way.