Monday, August 21, 2006
Now Remember, This Comes From One Of The UK's Conservative Papers
And I'll bet you dollars to doughnuts this never makes the "liberal" US TV network evening news tonight:
The Briton alleged to be the ‘mastermind’ behind the airline terror plot could be innocent of any significant involvement, sources close to the investigation claim. Rashid Rauf, whose detention in Pakistan was the trigger for the arrest of 23 suspects in Britain, has been accused of taking orders from Al Qaeda’s ‘No3’ in Afghanistan and sending money back to the UK to allow the alleged bombers to buy plane tickets. But after two weeks of interrogation, an inch-by-inch search of his house and analysis of his home computer, officials are now saying that his extradition is ‘a way down the track’ if it happens at all. It comes amid wider suspicions that the plot may not have been as serious, or as far advanced, as the authorities initially claimed. Analysts suspect Pakistani authorities exaggerated Rauf’s role to appear ‘tough on terrorism’ and impress Britain and America. A spokesman for Pakistan’s Interior Ministry last night admitted that ‘extradition at this time is not under consideration’.But since Bush and the GOP used 9/11-based terror fear to win in 2002 and 2004, and get us to agree to invading and occupying Iraq in 2003, don't expect to see stories like this -- stories that undercut BushCo's goal of keeping us all scared of icky brown people -- get much US media play. UPDATE: And here's something else that won't make tonight's US evening news: Now we find that the British intelligence people are finally putting their foot down -- nearly two weeks after they were forced by the US to spring their terror trap prematurely -- and telling the Yanks (the FBI, specifically) to quit endangering what case the Brits actually have by constantly running their mouths off about it:
Anti-terror police in Britain have made an angry request to their US counterparts asking them to stop leaking details of this month's suspected bomb plot over fears that it could jeopardise the chances of a successful prosecution and hamper the gathering of evidence. The British security services, MI5 and MI6, are understood to be dismayed that a number of sensitive details surrounding the alleged plot - including an FBI estimate that as many as 50 people were involved - were leaked to the media. FBI sources confirmed to The Observer that the bureau had been ordered to stop briefing at the request of the British authorities. 'The shutters have come down,' a bureau source said. 'We have been told not to discuss the case any more.' The request for silence by the British authorities is an early sign that those involved in the investigation have concerns at the way their evidence-gathering is proceeding. It is understood that British anti-terror police wanted to prolong their observation of the suspects for as long as possible in a bid to gather sufficient evidence. There are now fears among some Scotland Yard officers that they may have acted too hastily when deciding to arrest the 24 suspects earlier this month. Although martydom videos and the components of a bomb have been recovered in the investigation, linking such evidence to all those arrested could still prove difficult.The J. Edgar Hoover gloryhound instinct still exists at the FBI, I see.
UPDATE #2: Richard Cranium over in the comments thread for the diary I posted at DKos on this points us to an article showing just how un-frickin'-likely it is that the "UK liquid bombers" could have pulled off a plot to create a dangerous explosive from two or more separately-harmless chemicals in a plane toilet.
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