Orange Alert

  1. from February 14,2003
    False Alarm?
    Terror Alert Partly Based on Fabricated Information
    By Brian Ross, Len Tepper and Jill Rackmill
    Feb. 13-A key piece of the information leading to recent terror alerts was fabricated, according to two senior law enforcement officials in Washington and New York.
    _The officials said that a claim made by a captured al Qaeda member that Washington, New York or Florida would be hit by a "dirty bomb" sometime this week had proven to be a product of his imagination.
    The informant described a detailed plan that an al Qaeda cell operating in either Virginia or Detroit had developed a way to slip past airport scanners with dirty bombs encased in shoes, suitcases, or laptops, sources told ABCNEWS. The informant reportedly cited specific targets of government buildings and Christian or clerical centers.
    "This piece of that puzzle turns out to be fabricated and therefore the reason for a lot of the alarm, particularly in Washington this week, has been dissipated after they found out that this information was not true," said Vince Cannistraro, former CIA counter-terrorism chief and ABCNEWS consultant.

    It was only after the threat level was elevated to orange-meaning high-last week, that the informant was subjected to a polygraph test by the FBI, officials told ABCNEWS.
    "This person did not pass," said Cannistraro.

    According to officials, the FBI and the CIA are pointing fingers at each other. An FBI spokesperson told ABCNEWS today he was "not familiar with the scenario," but did not think it was accurate.

    >>>Despite the fabricated report, there are no plans to change the threat level. Officials said other intelligence has been validated and that the high level of precautions is fully warranted.

    >>>It's not the first time a captured al Qaeda operative has made up a huge story and scared a lot of people.

    The FBI concluded the information that led to a nationwide hunt for five men suspected of infiltrating the United States on Christmas Eve was fabricated by an informant, and the agency called off the alert sparked by the information.

    Officials said this one got so far because it coincided with other intelligence, that officials still believe points to a coming attack, timed to hostilities with Iraq._

    I believe another terror event will happen some time. And I've been aware of increased 'chatter' potending increased danger from reading sites on the internet. BUT I am suspicious of the timing of this alert. BushII raised the level from yellow to orange on the same day 1] information raising doubts about Powell's UN presentation were being released and 2] the leaked draft document of Patriot Act II became public.

  2. 38 Comments

  3. by   pickledpepperRN
    I want to know if you "protected" a room with duct tape and plastic.

    I heard on the radio we would all be safer if those prone to insults put duct tape on their mouth.
  4. by   passing thru
    The news photo's last night were awesome ! IN Washington, D. C. , Armed policemen and military men carrying large rifles and machine guns...lots of them ! All over and around the white house and capitol. And large areas roped off, e.g., parking areas at the Lincoln memorial and Washington monument. It reminded me of pictures I have seen on the news of Israel. Especially the footage of the airports and the big train station in NYC. They showed a lot of footage of NYC also.
    All this based on the one guys report. The news said we didn't think to give him a lie detector test until after the Orange alert was declared. Some of the people interviewed were obviously anxious, but it was the sight of the heavily armed military and the large numbers of guns, etc., that was causing their anxiety. Several said "if it is orange, the next progression will be red, and that will be when we are under attack, right?"
    I haven't bought any plastic or duct tape and do not plan to. I like the duct tape on the mouth idea though.
    I read that we spend more on military and defense than the next twenty five countries combined. So, what is a sheet of plastic over the windows going to do for me?
  5. by   Q.
    All this based on the one guys report. The news said we didn't think to give him a lie detector test until after the Orange alert was declared.
    Not quite.

    The real story
    Last edit by Susy K on Feb 14, '03
  6. by   donmurray
    IN what way is Fox's version more "real" than ABC's? You pays your money and takes your choice.
  7. by   Mkue
    I wonder why they didn't administer the test first !
  8. by   Stargazer
    Marry me, Don.
  9. by   Stargazer
    O/T: I tried to read the story Susy linked to and I swear to you, I actually had to cover part of my screen with a piece of paper to block out the ad featuring Greta Van Susteren in order to do so. It was THAT distracting.

    Aaaagh! Scary! Surgery! Face!

    Ahem. Sorry. Back to topic.
  10. by   maureeno
    my suspicions regards the timing of the code orange are because I first read a report about the increased threat over a week earlier on

    what about my reporting this makes anyone less safe? should I seal my mind as well as my mouth? how is it an 'insult'' to wonder about our government? [these questions are asked only for effect, no answer is expected]
  11. by   sjoe
    Orange alert?
    Isn't this when the Florida Citrus Growers go on strike?

    I noticed the stock price of 3M (a maker of duct tape) went up today.
  12. by   rncountry
    sjoe, last night my hubby ran to Walmart and we have a niece that works there, she came up to my hubby and told them that they had sold out of duct tape. When he came home and told me this we sat there and made quips about it and shook our heads. Personally I can't imagine the stupidity that makes people run out and purchase plastic and duct tape. Though maybe their house is sealed better than mine. My house is an old farm house we renovated, built originally in 1880. We've put new windows in all around, but regardless no matter what we did we are going to get some air in somewhere. Now I believe in being prepared for an emergency and think that we in this country had best think hard about how we are going to deal with terrorism and protect our families, but I somehow can't see how plastic and duct tape is going to do that.
    We have lots of batteries and bottled water as well as candles and things like that because we live in a rural area and when there are nasty storms as we invaribly get in the spring and summer, we lose our electricity almost always. Which means not only no lights, but no water without electricity to run the pump. I usually have extra can goods because I buy in bulk when things are on sale, but to me the reality is that if we had a major bio chem attack you are not going to be able to do much except pray. I think also the idea of levels of terrorism threat do little but make people jumpy and scared. We need someone who can go on National TV and say things like "We have nothing to fear, but fear itself." We need someone to buck up the country, not paralyze it with fear. Or of course we can fight terrorism by going shopping and help prop up the economy. Whatever.
  13. by   maureeno
    the 15February coallition in NY was not issued a parade permit because of the code orange. The anti-war, labor, social justice and church groups are allowed to rally but not march.
  14. by   passing thru
    I heard on the news this morning, they were discussing the Orange Alert and when it would be rescinded. The announcers asked , "Is it doing the country any REAL good?" One reponded, "Well, it it controlling the anti-war protestors."

    There are world wide protests scheduled in other countries today. They aren't under superficial orange alerts and still
    have the freedom to march and protest.