Reports: Credible terror threat to New York and D.C. to coincide with 9/11 anniversary; Update: New details revealed

posted at 8:26 pm on September 8, 2011 by Allahpundit

They’ve got to try something. In the span of four months, they’ve lost Bin Laden, their operational chief (and new number two) Atiyah al-Rahman, and most recently a senior operative known as Younis al-Mauritani who was tasked by Osama himself with plotting international attacks. We’re picking their bones clean. If they can’t get someone somewhere inside the U.S. to do something this weekend to mark their most momentous plot, it’ll be proof positive of how far they’ve fallen in a decade.

Whatever it is, it’s serious enough that Obama’s been briefed on it more than once.

The threat would target New York City or Washington, D.C., sources said. Authorities have obtained what they believe is information on possible suspects tied to central Al Qaeda, but they have not necessarily determined names of possible suspects…

According to a senior U.S. official with knowledge of the threat, “People are aggressively pursuing leads,” and it is “specific enough to elicit worry.” Another senior U.S. official stressed the threat is still “unconfirmed” so it is being chased down and investigated…

“It feels more than aspirational,” one official said.

A U.S. official told the local NBC affiliate that the plot may involve car bombs and “threats to bridges and tunnels’; a reporter at CBS hears that the feds are trying to locate five to 10 people connected to it. A different official tells NBC that the intelligence came in “very, very recently” and that he’d rate the seriousness of the threat as a five or six on a scale of one to 10 — although he qualified it by saying it’s neither imminent or confirmed. (How is an anniversary attack not “imminent”?) I’m mighty curious to know how they were tipped off. Do note: Although al-Rahman and of course Bin Laden were killed, al-Mauritani was actually captured in a joint CIA/ISI operation somewhere near Quetta in Pakistan. No one’s saying when, precisely, they grabbed him, but this nifty short bio in Spiegel suggests it might have been a week or so ago. All of that fits the basic outline of what we know here: al-Mauritani was the guy in the inner circle who was focused on attacking America, his arrest was probably very recent, and he is indeed a member of “central Al Qaeda,” not one of the offshoots in other countries. Maybe he coughed something up during interrogations? Or maybe there’s no plot and he’s merely waging a little psychological warfare from his cell to try to convince us that something’s in the works.

Daniel Henninger has a piece out today at the Journal noting that while much has changed since 9/11, America’s counterterror arsenal has remained remarkably consistent from Bush to Obama. Can’t wait to find out which Bushian tactics may have been used to dig up this hot lead.

Update: Be careful out there.

More FOX reporting — a law enforcement source says terrorists were saying, “We need to get our people into place” for a car bomb

Update: ABC says they’re looking at three people at least, one of whom may be an American citizen.

U.S. authorities are scrambling to sort through information that the CIA developed in the past 24 hours indicating that at least three individuals entered the U.S. in August by air with the intent to launch a vehicle-borne attack against Washington, D.C. or New York around the anniversary of 9/11, according to intelligence officials.

One of the intelligence and law enforcement officials that ABC News spoke to said that one of the individuals may be a U.S. citizen and a second official said that possibly two of the individuals may have had U.S. documentation — whether green cards or passports was unclear…

Although authorities said they had not yet identified the suspects, the operatives are believed to have embarked on their journey to the U.S. from the tribal areas of Pakistan, according to two senior officials. One official said the route may have taken them through Dubai.

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Comment pages: 1 2

Didn’t all the hijackers hit strip joints the night before?

Dragnet time.

TexasDan on September 8, 2011 at 10:53 PM

Have not read comments. But, what would one stupid car-bombing do to a nation? I am not discounting innocent lives taken, however, in every major city, every single night, several people die due to gang war-fare. Am I to also get my knickers in a knot over some lone executioner? Hide?

betsyz on September 8, 2011 at 10:54 PM

What’s to worry about? Janet Napolitano and the TSA have got our backs. They’re sure to double-down on the cavity searches of grandmothers, small children and syndicated female columnists. No terrorists will slip through that steel curtain.

MikeHu on September 8, 2011 at 10:55 PM

blatantblue on September 8, 2011 at 10:40 PM

I’ll have to take you up on that some other time.

It’s her birthday weekend. “We’re going to see blatantblue out on the island” will go over about as well as telling her she doesn’t look good in her new favorite jeans. After 20 years, I’ve learned.

CTSherman on September 8, 2011 at 10:57 PM

Is Obama desperate enough to Wag the dog or will this be real?

reddevil on September 8, 2011 at 8:29 PM

I put nothing past these traitors to do whatever is necessary to perpetuate, to continue, the bringing down of the country they hate. Obama and company make Carter look like a patriot, for Christ’s sakes.

TXUS on September 8, 2011 at 10:58 PM

From the tribal areas of Pakistan. Shocking/

vcferlita on September 8, 2011 at 10:59 PM

@betsyz, the 1st WTC bombing was a car bomb. Geez, use your imagination, enough cars in the right building or tunnel could be devastation.

SuperBunny on September 8, 2011 at 11:03 PM

CTSherman on September 8, 2011 at 10:57 PM

Something to consider for the future. Lots of nice B&B’s to stay at and hit the wine trail/port town.

al-Qa’eda HAS TO make a move. To not make a move on the tenth anniversary, after multiple failed attempts, and the loss of key leaders….

blatantblue on September 8, 2011 at 11:04 PM

betsyz on September 8, 2011 at 10:54 PM

Right place, right time, right tonnage, multiple vehicles.

Hell, they could go Palestinian style: bomb a site, then light off multiple secondaries as EMS arrives.

blatantblue on September 8, 2011 at 11:05 PM

Have not read comments. But, what would one stupid car-bombing do to a nation? I am not discounting innocent lives taken, however, in every major city, every single night, several people die due to gang war-fare. Am I to also get my knickers in a knot over some lone executioner? Hide?

betsyz on September 8, 2011 at 10:54 PM

Think of the damage one vehicle with a nuke or dirty bomb could do.

flyfisher on September 8, 2011 at 11:11 PM

I have long thought that the easiest targets for car-bombers are tunnels and bridges. Just stop and push the button. The trick is to catch them before they load the car. /Mr Lynn

MrLynn on September 8, 2011 at 11:11 PM

Have not read comments. But, what would one stupid car-bombing do to a nation? I am not discounting innocent lives taken, however, in every major city, every single night, several people die due to gang war-fare. Am I to also get my knickers in a knot over some lone executioner? Hide?

betsyz on September 8, 2011 at 10:54 PM

Having been close to a truck bomb going off in London I can tell you that in the right place such a device can be very destructive especially if the blast in tight area. Post City bombings and 9-11 most businesses and cities have robust recovery plans so the impact won’t be as bad.

AQ are desperate to do something, anything, to be seen as relevant and potent. It’s really down to everyone to be vigilant.

lexhamfox on September 8, 2011 at 11:18 PM

AQ is big on symbolic targets.

Truck bombs (OK City style) could do massive damage on or near the Mall in DC, on Wall Street, near the Smithsonian (Western culture, y’all) etc.

They also historically go back where they failed – White House or Capitol, LA or Seattle targets (Millennium plot).

I just hope what ever scumbags we’ve captured are “getting wet” to jog a little cooperation…

Bruno Strozek on September 8, 2011 at 11:31 PM

Bruno Strozek on September 8, 2011 at 11:31 PM

I hope they are soaking wet.

We all need to assume something will go down on Sunday.

blatantblue on September 8, 2011 at 11:37 PM

Bruno Strozek on September 8, 2011 at 11:31 PM
I hope they are soaking wet.
We all need to assume something will go down on Sunday.
blatantblue on September 8, 2011 at 11:37 PM

Lib: they will just tell you a story

Sonosam on September 8, 2011 at 11:55 PM

Everybody take your shoes off NOW!

Kensington on September 9, 2011 at 12:23 AM

I’d like to see them try and build the fecking Ground Zero mosque if another attack takes place in New York.

Sharke on September 9, 2011 at 12:32 AM

Bloomberg needs to rethink that ban on God on the 11th.

flyfisher on September 9, 2011 at 12:43 AM

I’m all for the forces in Washington being cautious. I don’t care if Alfred E Newman is in charge as long as another 9-11 is stopped.
There will be no pointing if nothing happens. That would be beyond asshatness.

Limerick on September 9, 2011 at 12:46 AM

So I guess we’ll get to see that new(ish) two-level National Terrorism Advisory System in action then?

My guess is that the levels are:

Level 1: Before
Level 2: After

Left Coast Right Mind on September 9, 2011 at 12:59 AM

Not making light of a serious issue, but here’s a funny commercial:

Here.

justltl on September 9, 2011 at 1:30 AM

PDB: “Al qaeda determined to attack America.”
In your court, Barry.

Ronnie on September 9, 2011 at 2:19 AM

I guess the question is: If nothing happens (assuming there was a credible threat … or not), will obama claim credit?

Ronnie on September 9, 2011 at 2:21 AM

We need More Michael

Yup. Just like they said in Capitalism: A Love Story You just sell the fear. Endless wars. Unemployment and hopelessness. Racism against whites who are becoming a downtrodden minority.

Two jets to Martha’s Vineyard. The lying speeches with political chess moves instead of programs.

And pretty soon the pigs looked just like the farmers.

IlikedAUH2O on September 9, 2011 at 2:48 AM

A car bomb denotated at the right place could cause a panic, which could lead to more destruction than the actual explosion. If, for example everyone tried to leave LA immediately, the resultant massive traffic jam might cause looting or other unrest.

Lou Budvis on September 9, 2011 at 3:13 AM

Didn’t Beck to a piece on this, about the Beslan terror attack serving as a dry run for zero day or whatever he called it? First you hold a school or soft target hostage for a couple hours , then when the understandable crowd of a zillion worried parents, and cops show up to cordon off the area and the news choppers show up…

BOOM.

BemusedMalkinite on September 9, 2011 at 4:19 AM

Sorry, “do”is what I meant, not “to”.

BemusedMalkinite on September 9, 2011 at 4:19 AM

Our thoughts exactly and with the cover up of fast and furious but getting anything with o’s prints on it are slim and none.Thugs have others do their dirty work.

ohiobabe on September 8, 2011 at 8:59 PM

Speaking of this, a little OT, I heard something today that perked up my antennae:

Was talking to a 30-ish Mexican auto mechanic today who has a U.S. work visa that requires him to regularly return to Mexico. He was telling me of his enthusiasm for guns and his aspirations of becoming a Mexican police officer and eventually working for a Mexican SWAT team.

He said that sometime in the not-too-distant past (I didn’t think to ask him exactly when), a drug-cartel hitman tried to take out Mexican president Calderon but was apprehended – carrying a top-notch U.S. military weapon. He said that there is a lot of talk in Mexico about this incident and how this weapon had to have come from the U.S. military, as they were the only source.

I asked him if he had heard of Operation Fast and Furious, and he said that his buddy had a car just like the one in the first movie…

Take this at face value. Very interesting. Has anyone else heard any talk about this attempt on Calderon?

cane_loader on September 9, 2011 at 4:38 AM

And I wonder what we would do if the Mexican government had sold a high-powered rifle to an American militia member who then tried to take out our prez?

If we could prove it, what would we demand from Mexico?

cane_loader on September 9, 2011 at 4:45 AM

On topic:

I would like to urge all concealed-carry Americans and all off-duty law-enforcement to please load and carry for the next week or so in every public place they go, and keep eyes wide.

This is the 10-year anniversary, and prime time to get hit.

An armed and alert public is undoubtedly our best and most comprehensive defense here. This is where the Second Amendment counts.

cane_loader on September 9, 2011 at 4:50 AM

Yeah stop the TSA checks on granny from Sheboygan or the 3 year old from Alabama. How bout double and triple check anyone 2 years to 150 years coming to and from the middle east. I didnt say race. I just think anyone flying from the middle east to here. Should get the plastic glove. Call it G-love for you hip hoppers.

Gedge on September 9, 2011 at 5:20 AM

Why do they hate us so much. Can’t we all just get along?

petefrt on September 9, 2011 at 5:57 AM

Yes we’re looking for three islamic terrorists men, linked to a muslim terrorist group al qaeda.

If we know that there are “three men” could we please get a photograph or a sketch at least?! Any missing firetrucks?

kregg on September 9, 2011 at 7:10 AM

ABC says they’re looking at three people at least, one of whom may be an American citizen.

Kinda throws the whole “Terrorism is rooted in poverty!” meme out the window, doesn’t it?

englishqueen01 on September 9, 2011 at 7:14 AM

Can’t wait to find out which Bushian tactics may have been used to dig up this hot lead.

yeah, those same tactics the lsm and dems cried foul for 8 years now seem pretty dang good just cuz there is a D next to this presidents name

pathetic

cmsinaz on September 9, 2011 at 7:16 AM

Use one nuclear device in retaliation for each American killed. Start with Mecca. Move on to Qom, Islamabad, Cairo, Damascus, etc.

Should be finished real quick.

patch on September 9, 2011 at 8:03 AM

We don’t have to worry in NYC. Even if the terrorists take out half of Manhattan, Mayor Bloomberg will “reach out to them” and punish any who dare criticize their actions.

MaiDee on September 9, 2011 at 8:07 AM

Mayor Bloomberg will “reach out to them” and punish any who dare criticize their actions.

MaiDee on September 9, 2011 at 8:07 AM

sad but wouldn’t put it past him…

cmsinaz on September 9, 2011 at 8:15 AM

I would like to urge all concealed-carry Americans and all off-duty law-enforcement to please load and carry for the next week or so in every public place they go, and keep eyes wide.
cane_loader on September 9, 2011 at 4:50 AM

I’m on it.

Buck Turgidson on September 9, 2011 at 8:31 AM

I would like to urge all concealed-carry Americans and all off-duty law-enforcement to please load and carry for the next week or so in every public place they go, and keep eyes wide.

cane_loader on September 9, 2011 at 4:50 AM

I’m on it.

Buck Turgidson on September 9, 2011 at 8:31 AM

Extra mags. Hi-caps if ya got ‘em.

flyfisher on September 9, 2011 at 8:58 AM

Oh, goody. I’m back in NYC this weekend.

JetBoy on September 9, 2011 at 9:06 AM

Oh, goody. I’m back in NYC this weekend.
JetBoy on September 9, 2011 at 9:06 AM

Where about?

blatantblue on September 9, 2011 at 9:21 AM

I thought Scooter’s Cairo speech and Muslim outreach was supposed to take care of all of this?

kingsjester on September 9, 2011 at 9:40 AM

The Washington Redskins and New York Giants are playing on 9/11. Wonder if they would see that as a symbolic target?

spypeach on September 9, 2011 at 9:51 AM

The Washington Redskins and New York Giants are playing on 9/11. Wonder if they would see that as a symbolic target?

spypeach on September 9, 2011 at 9:51 AM

Possibility. My guess is that, if anything, they will return to Ground Zero and/or the greater Manhattan area. They MUST do something.

They have been rendered ineffective in Iraq. They have failed multiple times Stateside, and have lost so many high value leaders (UBL, etc). If they fail to make a strong statement on the tenth anniversary of 9/11, then they will reveal themselves as being completely ineffectual in the U.S. We all know they remain quite active in the Maghreb, African horn, Indonesia, Pakistan, Yemen, etc.

blatantblue on September 9, 2011 at 10:05 AM

I pray and hope that the FBI and all others involved manage to prevent any such terrorist attack.

Carl on September 9, 2011 at 10:07 AM

IlikedAUH2O on September 9, 2011 at 2:48 AM

Whites becoming a downtrodden minority!?!? Are you mad?

ernesto on September 9, 2011 at 10:07 AM

Where about?

blatantblue on September 9, 2011 at 9:21 AM

Staying at 26th and Park…but will be downtown on Sunday. I’m gonna stay away from Times Square tho, which I’ve always done anyway…too many dang tourists.

JetBoy on September 9, 2011 at 10:29 AM

ABC says they’re looking at three people at least, one of whom may be an American citizen.

Kinda throws the whole “Terrorism is rooted in poverty!” meme out the window, doesn’t it?

It’s a dumb meme, but are you suggesting there’s no poverty in the US?

YYZ on September 9, 2011 at 10:43 AM

JetBoy on September 9, 2011 at 10:29 AM

26th and park…I go to school around the corner! How long will you be here?

ernesto on September 9, 2011 at 10:44 AM

Where is the outcry from all the lefty talk show hosts? Remember when the Bush admin instituted the color code and elevated the threat level whenever there was a seminal event on the horizon? An election, a holiday, 9/11 anniversary? The lib, commie bastards went nuts, telling us Bush was politicizing 9/11, using it for “political gain”. Jackasses…every one of them.

Jarhead68 on September 9, 2011 at 11:03 AM

I put on my if this were a Republican hat and thought it odd that as soon as CBS had finished their “glowing” political analysis after Obama’s tedious speech, that they cut to a report of a “credible and specific” terrorist threat. We have already been told that when they “terminated with extreme prejudice” the leader of al Qaeda, that there were documents of chatter about an 10 year plan. So is that the source ?
If this were Bush, they would have called a “leak” to the press of this type pure unadulterated “Wag the Dog” stuff.
So now we are told there are three guys with “plain names” seeking to do car bombs. Or maybe it’s just Jimmy Hoffa and his boys.

J_Crater on September 9, 2011 at 11:16 AM

I drove to NYC in May and there was massive police presence at the entrance to the Lincoln Tunnel. They were slowing down every vehicle and looking at the drivers. I’m not sure I believe this is a new threat. A big car bomb in one or more of those tunnels would be horrible. We know that terrorists have already plotted to blow up the Brooklyn Bridge and tried to set off a car bomb in Times Square.

Why? Just to show they can, to kill and maim a lot of Americans, and give their own dwindling number of active supporters some reason to stick with them.

rockmom on September 9, 2011 at 11:16 AM

betsyz on September 8, 2011 at 10:54 PM

I work in DC and after 9-11 I became very aware of the locations of support columns in parking garages. Nearly any office building in DC with a publicly-accessible parking garage has 1,000 people working in it. It is also possible to have federal offices in those buildings (in leased space) without a substantially increased security presence, certainly not of the garage. I’ve been worried about that for 10 years and I’ve never seen anything done about it.

DrSteve on September 9, 2011 at 11:32 AM

I was walking through Times Square in the summer of 2004 when suddenly, a long line of NYPD patrol cars arrived and fanned out at an angle in front of the sidewalks — a long row of patrol cars down each side of the street.

There must have been 100 patrol cars or more. We asked a beat cop what was going on, and he said it was some sort of terrorism drill. A few of the cops got out of their cars, but most seemed to stay put inside.

Probably was a terrorism drill; all I know is that it was an impressive sight.

In the days before each 9/11 anniversary, I wear the aluminum memorial bracelets that I got right after 9/11 2001. Right now I have on the bracelet for NYPD officer John Coughlin, age 43 when he was murdered by Muslim terrorists on that day. The bracelet says “missing in action,” but it was later found that he had died.

God bless them all. Also the firefighters and the military. I hope we aren’t in for a terrible weekend — or a terrible Monday rush hour.

KyMouse on September 9, 2011 at 11:51 AM

A few thoughts:

1. If we assume some intelligence among those trying to plan an attack, do you really think they are going to pick a day/week when every department is announcing how hard they are looking – or are they going to pick some bleak week in late January when no one is making such announcements and guards are trying to stay out of the cold? (I concede some plotters may not be so bright, but then they are less likely to plan a large successful attack.)

2. As another commenter stated – so they blow up a building, a tunnel or two – physically that’s probably less damage than a hurricane; economically, it is not going to have much effect on the country because it will not be a huge emotional shock. Life will go on for most people in most places with little change other than Big Sis’ random cavity searches and her demands that everyone walking in public is subject to strip searches “for your own safety”. (That’s not belittling the lost lives, but let’s face it, drunk driving killed 11,000 last year – did that affect you unless you lost a loved one?)

3. Let’s assume they manage to kill a stadium of people or bring down the Capitol Building – what are we going to do about it beyond what we are already doing? Invade Pakistan? Carpet bomb Mecca?

Sorry, but let’s think realistically about this.

Over50 on September 9, 2011 at 11:51 AM

OK, Riddle me this:

If there are credible terrorist threats, and not “Wag the Dog”……

Why did 0bama insist on gathering the entire ‘leadership’ of the nation into one building last night
.

(apologies if someone up-thread already mentioned this, I haven’t read comments yet.)

LegendHasIt on September 9, 2011 at 12:23 PM

MikeHu on September 8, 2011 at 10:55 PM

You forgot pro-lifers.

Ryan Anthony on September 9, 2011 at 12:39 PM

If they can’t get someone somewhere inside the U.S. to do something this weekend to mark their most momentous plot, it’ll be proof positive of how far they’ve fallen in a decade.

Thank you President Bush and the U.S. military.

pdigaudio on September 9, 2011 at 12:48 PM

betsyz on September 8, 2011 at 10:54 PM

“Car” bombs are not all put in “cars”, as we learned in Oklahoma City. And a dirty bomb in the trunk of a Volkswagen would be a pretty serious matter. Besides, the object of terror is not just a matter of scale. Anything that can get people thinking “wow, that coulda been ME!” will have the desired effect.

MikeA on September 9, 2011 at 2:59 PM

Hopefully Maryland State police will monitor the Islamo-supremacist lecture scheduled in DC this afternoon.

For the 10th anniversary of 9/11, University of Maryland MSA will host yet another outrageous pro-sharia lecture (this year by Yasir Qadhi) at Stamp Union.

Yasir Qadhi’s Houston-based Ilmquest infamously hawked jihad incitement CDs by Al-Qaeda cleric Anwar al-Awlaki shortly after the Ft. Hood massacre.

Terp Mole on September 9, 2011 at 5:11 PM

Linky Repair: pro-sharia lecture by Yasir Qadhi in DC

Video: Yasir Qadhi preaching Holocaust denial

Your taxpayer-funded facilities at work.

Terp Mole on September 9, 2011 at 5:14 PM

MD Gov O’Malley
twitter:

6 September: The main message from our meeting on homeland security this morning: We’re all in this together– if you see something, say something.

Terp Mole on September 9, 2011 at 5:15 PM

Say, shouldn’t we be removing belts, shoes, metallic objects, and force all cars through x-ray scanners before they enter New York City?

kregg on September 9, 2011 at 5:55 PM

Do you go to SVA by any chance? I’ll be here until Monday morning.

JetBoy on September 9, 2011 at 7:40 PM

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