Hey, someone tell al qaeda their New York Times intel alert is in.
The U.S. government gained sweeping access to international banking records as part of a secret program to choke off financial support for terrorism, officials confirmed Thursday.
Treasury Department officials said they used broad subpoenas to collect the financial records from an international system known as Swift.
“Since immediately following 9-11, the American government has taken every legal measure to prevent another attack on our country,” Dana Perino, deputy White House press secretary, said Thursday evening. “One of the most important tools in the fight against terror is our ability to choke off funds for the terrorists.” “Our subpoena of terrorist-related records from Swift has provided us with a unique and powerful window into the operations of terrorist networks,” Levey said.
U.S. Officials Pleaded for Silence On Enemy Banking Transactions
“We know the terrorists pay attention to our strategy to fight them, and now have another piece of the puzzle of how we are fighting them,” Perino said. “We also know they adapt their methods, which increases the challenge to our intelligence and law enforcement officials.”
Perino added: “The president is concerned that once again The New York Times has chosen to expose a classified program that is working to protect our citizens.” Full story here.(hat tip Jay)
Can I make a citizen's arrest for treason and/or spying? This is ridiculous and dangerous.
This week's issue of Time Magazine has caused a spike in U.S. and Western worries over al-Qaeda's intentions and capability to use weapons of mass destruction against the United States. Prompting the concern is Time's excerpt of journalist Ron Suskind's new book, The One Percent Doctrine, which describes al-Qaeda's apparently successful development of a portable device that can be used to disperse cyanide gas. The gas kills upon inhalation, and Suskind claims that a cyanide gas attack on New York City's subway system was within 45 days of occurring when al-Qaeda's deputy commander, called it off. hat tip daryl
MOre here from todays Sun;
A fresh barrage of criticism is erupting over the decision of The New York Times to disclose last night another classified surveillance program aimed at gathering information about terrorist plots.
“The president is concerned that, once again, the New York Times has chosen to expose a classified program that is protecting the American people,” a White House spokeswoman, Dana Perino, said last night. “W
The Times report, which appears in today’s editions and was posted last evening on the paper’s Web site, details the federal government’s use of subpoenas to gather large troves of data from a Belgium-based consortium that handles international bank transfers, the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunication, known as Swift.
The Times quoted an unnamed former government official describing Swift as “the mother lode, the Rosetta stone” of data on global banking operations.
The newspaper said the surveillance effort helped lead to the capture in Thailand in 2003 of a top Al Qaeda operative, Riduan Isamuddin, who also went by the name Hambali.