US-Regierung stößt wieder dunkle Terrorwarnungen aus

--- Nichts genaues weiß man nicht in Washington, aber es wird mal wieder kräftig gewarnt vor neuen "katastrophalen" Anschlägen, angeblich dirigiert durch al-Qaida Masterminds wie bin Laden: "What we know about this most recent information is that it is being directed from the seniormost levels of the Al Qaeda organization," said a senior official at a briefing for reporters. He added, "We know that this leadership continues to operate along the border area between Afghanistan and Pakistan." Counterterrorism officials have said for weeks that they are increasingly worried by a continuing stream of intelligence suggesting that Al Qaeda wanted to carry out a significant terror attack on United States soil this year. ... Another senior administration official said on Thursday that the intelligence reports - apparently drawn partly from interviews with captured Qaeda members and partly from other intelligence - referred to efforts "to inflict catastrophic effects" before the election. ... At a news conference on Thursday, Tom Ridge, the homeland security secretary, said the intelligence about Al Qaeda's intentions was credible, even if it lacked specifics. He said that the chances of heading off an attack were better than ever, and that there was no reason to raise the terrorist threat level for now. Mr. Ridge said reliable information pointed to an attack in which terrorists would try to "disrupt our democratic process," suggesting an attack designed to disrupt the national political conventions or the elections in November. Rein zufällig fielen die Warnungen mit einer Abstimmung im Congress zusammen, bei der es um eine Beschränkung des tief in die Bürgerrechte einschneidenden PATRIOT Acts ging: The new information about Al Qaeda came as Congressional Republicans barely managed to block an effort by Democrats to ban the government from demanding records from libraries and book sellers in some terrorism investigations. Although the Democrats' effort failed by a single vote, it reflected the deep divisions over President Bush's signature antiterrorism legislation, the U.S.A. Patriot Act, which allowed the government access to such records.

Über die teilweise recht turbulente Jagd auf bin Laden im Grenzgebiet zwischen Afghanistan und Pakistan berichtet derweil der Stern ausführlich.