No specific imminent threat, they claim. Really? Sure does sound like a five-alarm fire:
President Barack Obama has ordered a “surge” of federal air marshals to be in place by Feb.1 in what officials said was a “race against time,” with other suicide bombers believed to be in the terrorist pipeline, although there is no specific imminent threat, federal officials told ABC News.
Under a preliminary plan, the officials said the already existing federal air marshal force of more than 3,200 personnel would be deployed almost exclusively to overseas flights flown by U.S. carriers.
Domestic high-risk flights will be covered by agents from other federal law enforcement agencies who were trained as air marshals in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
“The personnel we trained back then comprised a kind of reserve air marshal force and they are now going to be borrowed on orders from the President to work domestic flights,” said a senior law enforcement agent briefed on the plan.
Let me get this straight. According to ABC, both Abdulmutallab himself and independently collected intel point to more than a dozen other bombers ready to strike. (British intelligence claims the number could be as high as 25.) We’ve already seen one eerily similar plot broken up before it could come off. The feds are worried enough that they’re actually yanking people out of other agencies to ride the sky and they want them in place before the month is out. Meanwhile, Yemeni forces are now staging near-daily raids on the sort of Al Qaeda scum they’ve tolerated for years. Oh, and of course The One just instituted special screening protocols for citizens of 14 nations, 13 of which are Muslim, despite the inevitable shrieking he’ll have to endure as a result. Anyone seriously want to argue that they’re not worried about a very specific, very imminent threat?