Monday, May 7, 2012

U.S. Disrupts New Jetliner Bomb Plot in Yemen — White House Gets AP to Hold Off Reporting for Intelligence Reasons

The Wall Street Journal has the main story, "Jetliner Bomb Plot Is Foiled."

It's a good thing.

Al Qaeda operatives are obviously working hard at deploying detection-proof explosives on U.S. jetliners. What's intriguing is the administration's coordination with the Associated Press in embargoing the story. Politico's got that, "W.H. embargoed Al Qaeda bomb threat" (via Memeorandum). And AP's report is here, "US: CIA thwarts new al-Qaida underwear bomb plot":

The operation unfolded even as the White House and Department of Homeland Security assured the American public that they knew of no al-Qaida plots against the U.S. around the anniversary of bin Laden's death.

"We have no credible information that terrorist organizations, including al-Qaida, are plotting attacks in the U.S. to coincide with the anniversary of bin Laden's death," White House press secretary Jay Carney said on April 26.

On May 1, the Department of Homeland Security said, "We have no indication of any specific, credible threats or plots against the U.S. tied to the one-year anniversary of bin Laden's death."

The AP learned about the thwarted plot last week but agreed to White House and CIA requests not to publish it immediately because the sensitive intelligence operation was still under way. Once officials said those concerns were allayed, the AP decided to disclose the plot Monday despite requests from the Obama administration to wait for an official announcement Tuesday.

U.S. officials, who were briefed on the operation, insisted on anonymity to discuss the case, which the U.S. has never officially acknowledged.

It's not clear who built the bomb, but, because of its sophistication and its similarity to the Christmas bomb, authorities suspected it was the work of master bomb maker Ibrahim Hassan al-Asiri. Al-Asiri constructed the first underwear bomb and two others that al-Qaida built into printer cartridges and shipped to the U.S. on cargo planes in 2010.
The report goes on to indicate that "The operation is an intelligence victory for the United States and a reminder of al-Qaida's ambitions, despite the death of bin Laden and other senior leaders."


An intelligence victory --- and a political victory for Barack "Gutsy Call" Obama and his new national security homeboy creds.

And if there's any doubt about the political coordination with the Obama-enabling media, recall from last year: "Good news: now redirects to Obama campaign site."