Sunday, August 13, 2006

UK terror roundup.

Terrorism: Ah, the tin foil hats are out after this NBC report.

LONDON - NBC News has learned that U.S. and British authorities had a significant disagreement over when to move in on the suspects in the alleged plot to bring down trans-Atlantic airliners bound for the United States. A senior British official knowledgeable about the case said British police were planning to continue to run surveillance for at least another week to try to obtain more evidence, while American officials pressured them to arrest the suspects sooner. The official spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the case. In contrast to previous reports, the official suggested an attack was not imminent, saying the suspects had not yet purchased any airline tickets. In fact, some did not even have passports. The source did say, however, that police believe one U.K.-based suspect was ready to conduct a "dry run." British authorities had wanted to let him go forward with part of the plan, but the Americans balked.
Okay this one source is a bit of a ditz if this account is true. You don't let them conduct a dry run. Sheesh. But it is at odds with this account from the London Guardian.
Downing Street admitted Tony Blair would not have left the country on Monday for his Caribbean holiday if he had known the police would need to swoop so quickly to disrupt a terrorist plot. He has known about it in general terms for months, and has spoken to President George Bush about it on a number of occasions. The two leaders discussed it in more detail on Sunday, during a conversation on a secure line in which the prime minister outlined what he knew of the British cell being monitored by the security services. Downing Street officials said he had also mentioned the specific surveillance operation. Mr Blair warned the president that it showed there was a specific threat to US airlines and urged total secrecy, warning premature leaks would destroy the monitoring of the group. From his holiday home, he spoke again to Mr Bush on Wednesday around 8pm UK time, again mentioning the security threat, but primarily discussing fresh plans to break the deadlock at the UN on the Middle East. Hours later police and security services were in contact with their US partners to say a specific threat was being acted upon.
The obligatory fallout stories. Britain's Muslims Brace for Fallout Los Angeles Times Muslim reaction: 'This is sad. I'm afraid for the community Independent, UK San Diego Muslim Leaders Condemn Terror Plot NBC Sandiego.com Many Muslims in Britain Tell of Feeling Torn Between Competing ... New York Times The ‘hearts and minds’ battle for British Muslims that failed Times Online Possible great news. Britain's Al-Qaeda leader seized

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