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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

FBI: don't worry, be happy

It seems that the FBI has taken a Mad Magazine-Alfred E. Neuman approach to its terror tracking and said "What, me worry?" to the problem of terrorism. After all, they concluded Ahmad Rahami was not a terrorist two years ago after he committed a terrorist attack that injured 31 people, at last count.

And just because nobody died due to his incompetence, that doesn't lessen the significance of his attempt. We were very lucky this time, but the FBI had nothing to do with it.

Rahami allegedly planted a pipe bomb and pressure cooker bombs at four New York City and New Jersey locations. Upon his arrest Monday morning, law enforcement found his journal praising "Brother Usama bin Laden." He also wrote that he prayed to Allah to continue his jihad and achieve martyrdom against the US government.

Rahami's father, Mohammad [believe it or not], told reporters that he contacted the FBI two years ago as a result of a violent family incident. He told them that his son was a terrorist. The FBI was also told that Rahami may have been trying to get his hands on explosives and was "associating with bad people," an FBI statement showed. But Daddy recanted his story and nothing was found to show Rahami became religiously orthodox and planned to commit jihad.

So the FBI did nothing. In normal times in a democracy like ours, it's totally understandable that the FBI would do nothing further. 

But these are not normal times.

This blown opportunity by the FBI to collar Rahami before allegedly bombing his targets is not the first time the FBI blew it.

Take the Pulse nightclub terrorist Omar Mateen, for example. Mateen was interviewed by the FBI three times before his June 12, 2016 attack that killed 49 and injured scores more. Three interviews.

His co-workers said in 2013 that Mateen bragged about having Al Qaeda connections and that he wanted to be a martyr.

But the Alfred E. Neumans of the FBI figured Mateen was just pushing back on anti-Muslim bullying by his colleagues and that he wasn't a threat. In the summer of 2014, they interviewed him again, but this was due to his connections to an American-born jihadist who blew himself up in Syria. Mateen answered questions, told officials what they wanted to hear, and was off on his merry jihad way.

In the course of his being investigated, the FBI ran his name in their databases and deployed a pair of confidential informants during their investigations and placed him on a terror watch list.

The investigation eventually ended along with the FBI's further surveillance. 

"What, me worry?"

Mateen was able to buy two guns  before the Florida attack and nobody was alerted.

The Boston Marathon bombers are another example of how the FBI dropped the ball.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev, the older brother of the two bombers, was initially flagged by Russian intelligence back in 2011. A memo to US officials stated that he had been radicalized and planned to fly to Russia to join an extremist group. Meanwhile, back in the States, counter-terror investigators screwed up royally, according to an unclassified summary report from the Office of the Inspector General.

Although a few attempts to investigate Tamerlan Tsarnaev were made, including a face-to-face interview, agents never told local law enforcement about their concerns, nor did they ever visit Tsarnaev's mosque. They never interviewed the terrorist's wife or an ex-girlfriend that he had physically assaulted in the past. The FBI never asked him about his plans to travel to Russia and they failed to search several major FBI systems.

"What, me worry?"

When hardly beautiful Tashfeen Malik came here from her native Pakistan in July 2014, she was "vetted" by no less than five (5) US agencies. She passed three background checks and had two face-to-hijab interviews.

Perhaps they asked her "Are you a terrorist or planning to become one?" and she answered: "No."

None of the vetting uncovered her pro-jihad social presence. She was the "Queen of Twitter Jihad" but the FBI only learned of that after she and her scumcrumpet husband, Syed Farook, killed 14 people at an office holiday party in San Bernadino in December 2015. Among the dead were work colleagues who bought the killing couple baby gifts for the arrival of their "little terrorist to be."

"What, me worry?"

People from two FBI anti-terrorism task forces were aware that Army Maj. Nidal Hasan was in email  communication with terrorist Anwar al-Awlaki since December 2008, and even asked Awlaki about suicide attacks.

The FBI was more concerned about how it would look if they launched a probe into the matter given that Hasan was an American Muslim in the military. The FBI never pursued the case and on November 5, 2009, Hasan killed 13 people at Fort Hood, Texas, as he screamed in Arabic "Allahu Akbar" (Allah is greater") in what the Obama administration labeled "Workplace violence."

Workplace violence? "What, me worry?"

Sure, the FBI is as busy as a one-armed juggler with all the terrorism leads they get. According to Clinton supporter, James Comey, they are currently working on 1,000 cases in all 50 states and that makes it difficult to do an effective job.

So as long as there are excuses, and if Hillary Clinton should become our next incompetent president, our government will continue to take a "What, me worry?" approach to national security.

One last word--the few examples given above are not nearly the total of FBI miscues.