RealNews

Uneven Response Seen on Terror in Summer of 2001

On July 5, 2001, as threats of an impending terrorist attack against the United States were pouring into Washington, Condoleezza Rice, the national security adviser, and Andrew H. Card Jr., the president’s chief of staff, directed the administration’s counterterrorism office to assemble top officials from many of the country’s domestic agencies for a meeting in the White House Situation Room. Even though the warnings focused mostly on threats overseas, Ms. Rice and Mr. Card wanted the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Federal Aviation Administration, the Customs Service, the Immigration and Naturalization Service and other agencies put on alert inside the United States. Ms. Rice and Mr. Card did not attend the meeting, run by Richard A. Clarke, the White House counterterrorism coordinator. When the meeting broke up, several new security advisories were issued, including an F.A.A. bulletin warning of an increased risk of air hijackings intended to free terrorists imprisoned in the United States. Full Story

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