No Evidence Of Wider Plot Says Napolitano
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano says there is no evidence thus far of a wider terrorist plot beyond the attempt to blow up the Detroit-bound Northwest Airliner. An investigation is ongoing into the suspect’s ties to al Qaeda.
Asked if Mr. Abdulmutallab was part of a bigger plot or whether he was a “lone wolf,” Ms. Napolitano replied, “Well, right now, we have no indication that it’s part of anything larger, but obviously the investigation continues.”
Napolitano was asked why Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab was allowed to fly given that his father had warned officials at the US Embassy in Nigeria about his son’s increasingly fanatical religious views.
“You have to understand that you need information that is specific and credible if you are going to actually bar someone from air travel,” Ms. Napolitano said on CNN. “He was on a general list, which over half a million people — everybody had access to it. But there was not the kind of credible information, in the sense derogatory information, that would move him up the list.”
Republicans used the opportunity to criticize the Obama administration.
Republicans on Sunday blamed the Obama administration for a lapse in security. “Homegrown terrorism, the threat to the United States, is real,” Representative Pete Hoekstra of Michigan, the top Republican on the House Select Intelligence Committee, said on “Fox News Sunday.” “I think this administration has downplayed it. They need to recognize it, identify it. It is the only way we are going to defeat it.”
Representative Peter King of New York, the ranking Republican on the House Homeland Security Committee, was critical of he Obama administration as well as Ms. Napolitano, who said repeatedly on the Sunday programs that the system had “worked” because passengers jumped on Mr. Abdulmutallab as he tried to ignite a highly explosive powder mixture, PETN, also called pentaerythritol tetranitrate, that he had taped to his leg.Click here for reuse options!
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