Can Germany reform its security services?
For the past month, the world has watched as the U.S. Congress investigates whether intelligence failures kept the FBI and CIA from stopping the Sept. 11 attacks. But at the same time, Germany has quietly been doing some soul searching of its own. In the late 1990s, a surveillance action dubbed Operation Tenderness, carried out by the Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution (BfV), came close to uncovering the Hamburg cell that harbored several of the 9/11 plotters. But German intelligence officials, like their American counterparts, were unable to connect the dots. Now the German government is finally debating whether it can effectively fight terrorism without a radical overhaul of its cherished federalist system.”It must be a cause for concern that we didn’t recognize what the perpetrators, who resided in Germany for some time, were brewing up before Sept. 11,” Interior Minister Otto Schily told TIME. Full Story