Reuters: U.S., German officials see no imminent terror threat in Germany; Update: Two being sought in connection with plot?

posted at 2:49 pm on May 11, 2007 by Allahpundit

I don’t know why this ABC News story suddenly exploded today. It was published two days ago in almost exactly the same form; I blogged it at the time and added a few details based on what was on the wires.

Sounds like ABC might have gotten a bad tip:

U.S. defense and counterterrorism officials, asked about the ABC News report, said they were unaware of a new threat against U.S. installations in Germany beyond a more general warning issued last month…

A U.S. counterterrorism official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, added: “The threat was taken seriously at the time and isn’t being dismissed now. But there’s nothing to suggest a new urgency to this.”

In Germany, the Interior Ministry said there had been no change in the security situation.

“There is nothing new,” a spokesman for the ministry said in a statement. “What we’re looking at is the state of affairs that has been long since known. This caused the U.S. authorities to publish a warning to their own citizens in Germany.”

The U.S. warning was issued on April 20.

FYI, the earlier ABC story identified Patch Barracks as a particular focus of the threat. The new story repeats that claim, but now they’ve added a quote from a spokesman at PB denying that the base has been targeted. It’s buried at the very end of the article, natch.

Update: Hmmm. The (alleged) plot thickens slightly.

Two men are being sought on suspicion of plotting to attack U.S. military facilities in Germany, U.S. and German officials told NBC News Friday. The alleged plot included a date, May 5, for an attack, but otherwise lacked much credibility, one official said.

The sources said officials have been looking for the two men, a German and a Turk, for nearly a month…

While the date has passed, a German official said the threat is still being taken seriously.

A U.S. counterterrorism official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said “the threat was taken seriously at the time and isn’t being dismissed now. But there’s nothing to suggest a new urgency to this.”

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Just another Zionist Crusader propoganda campaign.

RedWinged Blackbird on May 11, 2007 at 2:57 PM

Weird… FNC is reporting pretty much the exact opposite as we speak

RightWinged on May 11, 2007 at 3:04 PM

Well, just in time CNN’s Situation Room is leading with it.

BJ* on May 11, 2007 at 4:02 PM

Turn out Rueters is wrong. Just sent this in. Notice the highlighted part

Looks like Rueters is wrong

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/18614751/

Men sought in threat to U.S. bases in Germany
U.S., German officials say possible attack date has passed

WASHINGTON – Two men are being sought on suspicion of plotting to attack U.S. military facilities in Germany, U.S. and German officials told NBC News Friday. The alleged plot included a date, May 5, for an attack, but otherwise lacked much credibility, one official said.

The sources said officials have been looking for the two men, a German and a Turk, for nearly a month.

German intelligence earlier uncovered an e-mail that suggested an attack might be planned for May 5.

While the date has passed, a German official said the threat is still being taken seriously.

A U.S. counterterrorism official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said “the threat was taken seriously at the time and isn’t being dismissed now. But there’s nothing to suggest a new urgency to this.”

The concern relates to intelligence that the two men had converted to Islam and visited Pakistan — just as other terrorist plotters from the United States and Britain have.

Much of this information was derived from a raid on the residence of at least one of the two men. The suspects were not identified by name.

On April 20, the U.S. Embassy in Bonn issued a statement that hinted of security concerns. “U.S. diplomatic and consular facilities in Germany are increasing their security posture,” it stated. “We are taking these steps in response to a heightened threat situation. The U.S. Embassy encourages Americans in Germany to increase their vigilance and take appropriate steps to bolster their own personal security.”

NBC’s Robert Windrem and Andy Eckardt, as well as Reuters, contributed to this report.

William Amos on May 11, 2007 at 4:41 PM