Wednesday, December 30, 2009


Dammit, Janet!!

Question for the day: Why does Janet Napolitano still have a job?

It's all well and good for President Obama to identify "human and systemic failures" in the abortive Christmas Day plane bombing.

Well, duh!

But this really is, pace Yogi Berra, "Deja vu all over again"! As the New York Times reports, "Two officials said the government had intelligence from Yemen before Friday that leaders of a branch of Al Qaedathere were talking about “a Nigerian” being prepared for a terrorist attack. While the information did not include a name, officials said it would have been evident had it been compared with information about Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the 23-year-old Nigerian charged with trying to blow up a Northwest Airlines flight to Detroit on Christmas Day."

Holy, August 2001, "Bin Laden Determined To Strike In U.S" Memo, Batman!!!

So, more than eight years later, U.S. intelligence hasn't figure out how to identify likely suspects in terror attacks -- even when they've figured out their nationality and where the plot is originating from?

Forget about racial or ethnic profiling, what's wrong with "foreign national profiling"? Once there is credible information that Al Qaeda is training "Nigerians," why not put additional attention on Nigerians traveling into the United States (zeroing in one guy without luggage might also be a good idea)?

Anyway, clearly there's "systemic failure." We're into another administration and the permanent bureaucracy seems about as dysfunctional as ever. CIA? NSA? FBI? Is anyone talking to each other?

All that said, there is hardly anyway that Napolitano can be said to have the confidence of her boss, the president of the United States. The incident itself redounds to the efficience of an agency under Napolitano's oversight, the Transportation Security Agency. That's bad enough. In many other cultures, such an epic fail would have required a minister to submit his or her resignation on the spot. But then Napolitano goes on the air and says, "The system worked"? Well, if by "working," she means an alert Dutch national sustained burns to his own hands in bringing down the guy trying to bring down the plane, yeah one could say things "worked"!

Sorry, that's game over. The public can't have confidence in its head of homeland security. And neither should the president.

Say good night, Janet.


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