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Archive for February, 2012

Moroccan Man Busted in FBI Sting Plotting Suicide Attack at Capitol

istock photo

Update: Authorities identified the man as Amine El Khalifi, 29, of Alexandria, Va., an immigrant from Morocco who was illegally in the U.S.
By Mike Levine
Fox News

Authorities have arrested a man allegedly on his way to the U.S. Capitol for what he thought would be a suicide attack on one of the nation’s most symbolic landmarks, Fox News has learned exclusively.

The man, in his 30s and of Moroccan descent, was nabbed following a lengthy investigation by the FBI, initiated after he expressed interest in conducting an attack. It’s unclear how the FBI learned of his aspirations.

The man thought undercover FBI agents assisting him in his plot were associates of Al Qaeda.

To read more click here.

Read Justice Dept. Press Release

Presidential Hopeful Santorum Wants Secret Service Protection

The Santorum family/ campaign photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Could it be that presidential hopeful Rick Santorum wants what Mitt Romney already has?

Apparently, so.

ABC and Fox news report that Santorum has sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security asking for Secret Service Protection, USA Today reports.

Romney is currently the only GOP candidate who has the protection.

 

Muslim Groups Want Input in FBI Training Material

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Anti-terrorism training materials used by the FBI could be changing.

The Religion News Service reports that the FBI said it is willing to consider a proposal from a coalition of Muslim and interfaith groups to create a committee to review materials.

The FBI recently removed some materials from training after they were found to be incorrect or Islamophobic, the news service reported.

To read more click here.

Is Mexico’s War on Drugs Working?

By Mariano Castillo
CNN

Mexico has landed some hard punches against the drug cartels that have stirred violence in parts of the country — at least on paper.

In 2011, against just the notorious Zetas cartel, Mexico ended the reign of 16 leaders who ran cartel operations at the state or national level. Thugs with nicknames like “El Piolin,” “El Lucky” and “El Amarillo.”

But the violence attributed to the Zetas has not decreased even after these busts, and critics wonder if names are meaningless if they are so quickly replaced.

To read the full story click here.

Updated: One ICE Agent Dead and One Wounded in Fight Among Agents at Long Beach, Calif. Fed Building

Update: 12 p.m. Friday:  The Los Angeles Times reported that all three ICE agents were supervisors, but the gunman was lower ranking.  KTLA TV reported that the gunman opened fire during his disciplinary hearing.
 
By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

One ICE agent was killed and another wounded in a bizarre shootout among agents at a federal building Thursday night in Long Beach, Calif., the Los Angeles Times reported.

The paper reported that an agent at the Immigration and Customs Enforcement shot and wounded a supervisor and a third agent stepped in and shot the gunman to death. The Times on Thursday night initially reported that two agents died and one was wounded.

The incident happened at the Glenn M. Anderson Federal Building shortly before 6 p.m. The reason for the dispute was unclear.

 

Breaking News: Underwear Bomber Sentenced to Life

Suspect Abdulmutallab/u.s. marshals photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

DETROIT –– In a federal courtroom in downtown Detroit, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the man better known as the “Underwear Bomber”, was sentenced Thursday afternoon to life in prison for trying to blow up a Detroit-bound flight on Christmas Day in 2009.

Rail thin and clad in a white t-shirt and beige khakis, he looked more like an innocent high school kid than a 25-year-old from a privileged background in Nigeria.

But during the sentencing hearing, when given an opportunity to talk,  he spoke more like a hardcore terrorist and true believer in the fight against the west, offering no remorse and shouting out repeatedly, “God is Great.”

He made disparaging remarks about Jews and America and the FBI and the federal prosecutors and he praised the concept of killing in the name of God and Islam.

“The defendant has never expressed doubt or regret or remorse about his mission,” U.S. District Judge Nancy G. Edmunds said. “To the contrary, he sees that mission as divinely inspired and a continuing mission.” She hit him with four life sentences.

The sentencing included statements from passengers aboard the plane who were traumatized by the experience.

An emotional Flight attendant Lamare Mason talked about how the Underwear Bomber had turned his dream job into a nightmare.  Consequently, he said his job is more like a punishment.

“It’s not a joy,” he said.

Passenger Kurt Haskell, an attorney, stepped up to the podium, asked Mason to stand, and then praised him for putting out the fire. Mason stood in the back of the courtroom fighting back tears.

Haskell then went on to accuse the government of having a hand in the matter.

He said the FBI didn’t seem concerned there might be others on board who were involved.

And he said back in Amsterdam, Abdulmutallab boarded the plane without a passport with the assistance of someone at the airport.

“Regardless of how media and government try to shape this case, I am convinced that Umar was given an intentionally defective bomb by a U.S. agent… to stage a false terrorist attack to be used to implement various government policies. It really saddens me that the government won’t admit its role in the event. Because of this case, I will never trust anything the government says, ever.”

U.S. Attorney Barbara L. McQuade, who praised the judge for the sentence and feds who worked on the case, responded to Haskell’s remarks outside the courthouse and told reporters  that Haskell’s  theory “is not consistent with our facts.”

Andrew Arena, head of the Detroit FBI, said in a statement: “Those individuals who experienced Christmas Day 2009 first hand should be rest assured that justice has been done.”

And Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. issued a statement after sentencing, saying:

“As this investigation and prosecution have shown, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab is a remorseless terrorist who believes it is his duty to kill Americans. For attempting to take the lives of 289 innocent people, he has been appropriately sentenced to serve every day of the rest of his life in prison.

“Today’s sentence once again underscores the effectiveness of the criminal justice system in both incapacitating terrorists and gathering valuable intelligence from them.”

OTHER STORIES OF INTEREST

 

 

Feds Pile on Another Charge on Detroit’s Ex-Hip Hop Mayor Kilpatrick

Ex-Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick/official photo

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

DETROIT — The feds in the Motown just keep digging a deeper and deeper hole for Kwame Kilpatrick, the ex-mayor Detroit who was once dubbed the “Hip Hop Mayor.”

The Detroit Free Press reports that Kilpatrick and longtime friend Bobby Ferguson were charged Wednesday in a superseding indictment with extortion involving the shakedown of a towing contractor. Ferguson and Kilpatrick had already been charged with a slew of public corruption charges.

To read more click here. 

Book Claims “Deep Throat” Leaked Because He Wanted Top FBI Spot

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

The legend of Watergate lives on.

A book to be released next month, “Leak: Why Mark Felt Became Deep Throat,” reports that Felt, the number two guy in the FBI during Watergate, was leaking, not out of concern for public good but rather because he was angry he was not getting the top spot in the bureau, according the news agency ANI.

The book, authored by Max Holland, claims that Felt — known as “Deep Throat” to journalists —  hoped President Nixon would fire others, thinking they were leaking info, and Felt routinely lied to Washington Post reporters Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein that one of his rivals in the FBI was trying to blackmail Nixon.

To read more click here.