Saturday, July 20, 2013

Beware “Underwear 2″: TSA Chief Offers Rare al Qaeda Bomb Details

Beware "Underwear 2″: TSA Chief Offers Rare al Qaeda Bomb Details


A "next generation" device that could have slipped past airport security,

and the evil genius behind it

By Michael Crowley @CrowleyTIMEJuly 19, 201321 Comments



For many Americans, airline security is an onerous and even excessive

burden. But in remarks at a national security forum on Friday,

Transportation Security Administration chief John Pistole illustrated why

the federal government is still on high alert. Speaking in unusual detail,

Pistole offered specifics about an underwear bomb devised by a master al

Qaeda bomb-maker in Yemen meant to be exploded in an airliner over the

United States last year. The plot was foiled thanks to a double-agent inside

al Qaeda's Yemen branch, in a case that has also become the subject of a

controversial Justice Department leak investigation.


In an exchange with ABC News reporter Brian Ross at the 2013 Aspen Security

Forum, Pistole described the bomb as "Underwear 2," a successor to the

underwear bomb worn Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab tried to detonate on Northwest

Flight 253 near Detroit on Christmas Day 2009. Abdulmutallab's bomb

fizzled, severely injuring his groin but no one else.


Pistole described the May 2012 bomb as "a next generation device" that was

"new and improved in many respects" from the Christmas 2009 bomb. Designed

by one of the most wanted terrorists in the world, Ibrahim al-Asiri, the

device featured "a new type of explosive that we had never seen," Pistole

said. "All of our explosive detection equipment… wasn't calibrated to

detect that. And all of our 800 bomb-sniffing dogs had not been trained for

that specific type."


The use of a new explosive has been previously reported, but Pistole

continued with less familiar details about Underwear 2 that reflect the

growing sophistication of Asiri's sinister craftsmanship. He said the

device included redundancy, by mean of two different syringes to mix liquid

explosive compounds-"a double initiation system," apparently a response to

a failure of Abdulmutallab's initiation process. In essence, Pistole said,

"they made two devices."


Finally, Pistole said, the new bomb was encased in simple household caulk in

an effort to trap vapors that might alert any bomb-sniffing machines or dogs

that did happen to be capable of identifying the explosive.


"So you really have a twisted genius in Yemen," Ross observed. "That is

our greatest threat," Pistole replied. "All the intel folks here [at the

forum] know that is a clear and present danger."


Pistole added that Asiri is thought to have trained other bomb-makers in his

dark arts, and that count-terror officials are intensely focused on tracking

down the mentor and his students.


In an interview after his remarks, Pistole said TSA has adjusted its

bomb-sniffing defenses in response to Underwear 2: "They've been

recalibrated." But his concern about Asiri and his cohorts in Yemen

endures. "They want to show that we can spend billions and billions of

dollars," Pistole told Ross, "and we still can't stop them."


Read more:




(F)AIR USE NOTICE: All original content and/or articles and graphics in this

message are copyrighted, unless specifically noted otherwise. All rights to

these copyrighted items are reserved. Articles and graphics have been placed

within for educational and discussion purposes only, in compliance with

"Fair Use" criteria established in Section 107 of the Copyright Act of 1976.

The principle of "Fair Use" was established as law by Section 107 of The

Copyright Act of 1976. "Fair Use" legally eliminates the need to obtain

permission or pay royalties for the use of previously copyrighted materials

if the purposes of display include "criticism, comment, news reporting,

teaching, scholarship, and research." Section 107 establishes four criteria

for determining whether the use of a work in any particular case qualifies

as a "fair use". A work used does not necessarily have to satisfy all four

criteria to qualify as an instance of "fair use". Rather, "fair use" is

determined by the overall extent to which the cited work does or does not

substantially satisfy the criteria in their totality. If you wish to use

copyrighted material for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use,' you

must obtain permission from the copyright owner. For more information go to:










No comments:

Post a Comment