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New York subway threat a hoax

So says CNN:

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Information that led to heightened security for the New York City transit system was a hoax, government sources said Tuesday.

The sources said an informant in Iraq who provided the tip had told investigators about a terrorist plot involving New York's subway system. That informant admitted he gave false information, the sources said.

Law enforcement sources said last week the person who passed along the New York tip also gave information that prompted a military operation in Iraq, which led to the arrests of three al Qaeda suspects in Musayyib, south of Baghdad.

Government sources said the three men arrested in Iraq with suspected links to the possible plot had been interviewed and underwent lie detector tests showing they knew nothing about such a plan.

While many were quick to praise New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg for fast action and criticize the Bush administration for muddled response, in hindsight the "intelligence officials" who tried to downplay the threat as "not credible" were right on the money.


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Comments (8)

Both sides were rights on t... (Below threshold)
LiveFreeOrDie:

Both sides were rights on this. The federal analysts, and New York for taking action.

The only people wrong are those critisizing either the feds or the city. This was exactly how the system should work.

I agree 100%!I hea... (Below threshold)
JohnMc:

I agree 100%!

I heard an Al Qaeda expert being interviewed right after the dual bombings of American Embassies in Africa. I remember vividly his explanation of how Al Qaeda picks their targets and executes their missions.

Basically, they conduct numerous recons of the target until they determine patterns of operation. They look for a time to strike when normalcy is apparent. They don’t try to do anything under a heighten state of alert. The embassy bombings were delayed many times because the staff had been alerted and had heightened its security.

Remember what kind of day 9/11 was? No major news events happening. Nothing out of the ordinary going on. That’s when they hit. They want the world to see and they want everyone to know it was them.

They’ll go back home and wait until things have clamed down. These kind of false alarms the terrorist welcome as they desensitize the population to any future heightened alertness.

You can’t drop your guard, ever.

I like the quote from NYC's... (Below threshold)
Sean:

I like the quote from NYC's police commissioner who said, basically, if he's going to make a mistake it will be on the side of caution. Couldn't agree more.

Err on the side of caution,... (Below threshold)
arb:

Err on the side of caution, please. Much appreciated.

arb (NYC resident since 1982)

It was wrong for NYC to tak... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

It was wrong for NYC to take action like this if then knew it was likely not credible. Crying wolf is very dangerous. For example, how likely will people stay off the subway and find alternate transportation the next time a big deal is made?

The only way to really "kno... (Below threshold)

The only way to really "know" whether a threat is credible is to do nothing and watch what happens. It's called 20/20 hindsight. Otherwise you're going to be right sometimes, wrong sometimes, and it's not like they were pushing the panic button every day.

The Feds said it wasn't cre... (Below threshold)
jpm100:

The Feds said it wasn't credible for a reason. They want to avoid being seen as downplaying or ignoring disasters after a recent roasting the media. Crying wolf is a genuine concern. It numbs people to when more credible threats do come down the line.

Democratic Underground sees... (Below threshold)
smitty:

Democratic Underground sees another Rove trick
in 5...4...3...2..

Wait, they already have.




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