WASHINGTON (CNN) -- A U.S. counterterrorism official says the newly released tape of Osama bin Laden's chief deputy does not in itself demonstrate that al Qaeda planned or directed the terrorist attacks in London last July…
But the counterterrorism official said al Qaeda seemed "content to take credit for any terrorist attacks."
The official pointed to what he called the "stepped up propaganda efforts" by al Qaeda, attempts, he said, to get "better play" in Western media.
That's right. al Qaeda has been using propaganda to get "better play" in the Western media. al Qaeda has been doing that. al Qaeda, which can't even produce a single crapass video tape where the sound matches the pictures, or where the pictures don't look like they were filmed by the same guy who shot that blurry Bigfoot tape, that al Qaeda has been trying to terrorize Americans--because they're terrorists; that's what they do--through the exaggeration of their threats in the Western media.
That's al Qaeda that's been doing that.
And that's the Bush administration "pooh poohing" al Qaeda's involvement. That's the Bush administration, now, saying that a lot of al Qaeda huffing and puffing is just a bunch of propaganda.
Just to try to scare people. For political purposes. Just using the media for ulterior motives.
While the Bush administration has, of course, been trying to put terrorism in perspective. While the Bush administration, the level headed, straight shooting grownups, have been doing everything they can to stop the panic stricken, runaway media from being a mere propaganda tool.
According to a senior defense official, the Prudential Building in Newark, N.J., Citigroup and the New York Stock Exchange in New York and the World Bank and International Monetary Fund in Washington were just a few of many buildings named on an Al Qaeda (search) laptop "recently" retrieved…
Very specific details about United Nations (search) headquarters in midtown Manhattan were also found on this computer…
Also, according to a law enforcement bulletin issued by the FBI (search) and Department of Homeland Security (search) on Sunday, there is concern that subways and other modes of public transportation near financial institutions could be targets for terrorists…
"The elevation of the threat level in New York and New Jersey and Washington is a serious reminder, a solemn reminder, of the threat we continue to face," President Bush said at the White House Monday. "All the institutions of our government must be fully prepared for a struggle against terror that will last into the future."
The federal government raised the color-coded terror alert Sunday for New York City, Washington, D.C., and northern New Jersey when it announced that terrorists had recently cased the New York Stock Exchange (search) and The Citigroup Center (search) in Manhattan, the International Monetary Fund (search) and World Bank (search) buildings in Washington and Prudential Financial Inc.'s (search) headquarters in Newark, N.J…
A White House spokesman said the intelligence was detailed and "chilling," even if some of the information appeared to be old…
Meanwhile, the New York Post reported that investigators suspect terrorist moles worked at Citigroup's 59-story building at Lexington Avenue and 53rd Street in Manhattan and Prudential's buildings to case the skyscrapers as potential targets of car or truck bombs…
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- The U.S. government Friday raised the national threat level to "orange," indicating a "high risk of terrorist attacks."
ASHCROFT: Good afternoon…
After conferring this morning with the Homeland Security Council, the decision has been made to increase the threat condition designation currently classified at elevated risk, to increase that threat condition designation to the high-risk category…
Recent intelligence reports suggests that al Qaeda leaders have emphasized planning for attacks on apartment buildings, hotels and other soft or lightly secured targets in the United States…
"We expect al Qaeda will strive for new attacks that will be more devastating than the September 11 attack, possibly involving nonconventional weapons such as chemical or biological agents," the [State Department] warning read. "We also cannot rule out the potential for al Qaeda to attempt a second catastrophic attack within the U. S."
However, the warning did not cite new intelligence or any specific plans or targets.
And, also this:
The U.S. has intelligence information that at least one of the cancelled Air France Paris-to-Los Angeles flights might have been commandeered by al Qaeda and used in a terror attack against the United States…
The cancellations come aid heightened security and a high terror alert in the United States after intelligence agencies reported intercepting hints of an imminent terrorist attack. Federal officials fear that al Qaeda could use foreign planes to strike U.S. targets.
However, officials said the intelligence painted a confusing picture about where, when and how the terrorists might strike.
Possible targets range from the headquarters of the U.S fleet in the Persian Gulf in Bahrain, to Reagan National Airport in Washington, to Port of Valdez, Alaska — a major petroleum center. The mode of attack could be a hijacked commercial airliner or a so-called "dirty" radiological bomb. And the threat seems to apply to a period running to the end of January.
And, don't forget this:
SAN DIEGO, California (AP) -- A newly boosted terror threat level was prompting heavier security Monday at buildings ranging from nuclear plants to shopping malls. Checkpoints for trucks were heightened at bridges including the Golden Gate Bridge and spans into New York City.
Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge warned Sunday of possible terrorist strikes more devastating than the al Qaeda attacks of September 11, 2001. He raised the alert on the nation's five-color code from "elevated" (yellow) to "high" (orange.)
And that, all that, is the product of less than two minutes of Googling. There are thousands of articles like those. And nearly all of them are as ludicrous as these few.
It's funny, isn't it? No, it's not. But it is disturbing. That since November 3, 2004, all that chilling, credible evidence just dried right the fuck up. Shopping centers at Christmas time? Completely safe. New Year's Eve in Time's Square? Don't worry about it. Schools, financial institutions, airports, ports, nuclear power plants? These things are safe, people!
Since November 3, 2004.
Even things that are unsafe--like bombings in London--have nothing, let me repeat, nothing to do with al Qaeda. And if al Qaeda claims responsibility, you should be highly dubious of such claims. Frankly, based upon what we know about what little threat al Qaeda poses to Americans, such claims strike Homeland Security and American intelligence agencies as mere propaganda.
Since November 3, 2004.
Is it really propaganda? Is it really a lame ass attempt to use the Western media for political purposes? I have no idea. Neither do you.
But, considering bin Laden is neither dead nor in prison, considering al Qaeda is alive and well and flourishing somewhere in Pakistan, considering terrorism has actually increased worldwide since the American invasion of Iraq, considering the invasion of Iraq has been the greatest recruiting tool for al Qaeda ever, considering all this bad news has been inversely proportional to the terror alerts from Homeland Security, it's not entirely inappropriate for you to vomit when you hear the Bush administration say al Qaeda is trying to use the Western media for propaganda purposes.
You can also shoot your TV. After all, it's no longer necessary to be glued to CNN for the latest terror update. Election's over, suckers.