Obama Insists Security Failure was in Leveraging Intelligence

By | January 5, 2010

President Obama said today that the December 25th attempted bombing of a Detroit-bound flight was not a failure of the U.S. Intelligence gathering system, but a failure to analyze that information and respond to it. Instead of focusing solely on defending the performance of his government, which his predecessor might have done, he came out and said that this was unacceptable and we had to do better. We may not do better, but we choose to respect him for being so direct about making a mistake, if nothing else.

State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley announced today that they stripped attempted bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab of his visa after the attempted attack, as had a number of visas of others suspected of terrorism. That seems something of a strange thing to mention, especially since they should have pulled it beforehand.

Obama has pledged reform to the system, and promised changes to the government watchlist, and additional reviews with specific corrective actions completed this week, and for those changes to be implemented immediately. The Republicans have accused the President and the Democratic party of being weak on terrorism.

Many are calling for the resignation of the head of the Department of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano as well as the immediate appointment of a new head of the TSA, a position which has remained unfilled since last January.