Let the Eagle Soar [mp3] John Ashcroft has resigned as attorney general, saying "the objective of securing the safety of Americans from crime and terror has been achieved." He leaves behind a legacy of DOJ Accomplishments in the War on Terror (many of which seem to have been accomplished by non-DOJ parties) despite not actually convicting anyone of terrorism. I feel safer already.
One of Ashcroft's "credible sources" from last week's terror warning came from Abu Hafs al-Masri Brigades, a group that has also claimed responsibility for the blackout in the Northeast last year, the power outage in London, the Madrid bombing and has been called "notoriously unreliable" by U.S. officials. “The only thing they haven't claimed credit for recently is the cicada invasion of Washington". Ashcroft blames the FBI who have admitted that claims that terrorists were 90 percent ready to attack came not from al-Qaida, but from the Abu Hafs al-Masri Brigades’ statements.
Operation TIPS calls routed to "America's Most Wanted" (Salon premium, sorry) What hack wrote this script we Americans now find ourselves playing out, and why does he have such an on-the-nose sense of humor? Is this funny, depressing, painful or outrageous? Or all four?
Threat of 'dirty bomb' softened Attorney General John Ashcroft on Monday overstated the potential threat posed by "dirty bomb" suspect Abdullah Al Muhajir, Bush administration and law enforcement officials said Tuesday. Ashcroft's remarks annoyed the White House and led the administration to soften the government's descriptions of the alleged plot. "I don't think there was actually a plot beyond some fairly loose talk and (Al Muhajir's) coming in here obviously to plan further deeds," Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz told CBS on Tuesday. So, does this mean he'll actually get treated like an American citizen and get to see a lawyer?
Government Will Ease Limits on Domestic Spying by F.B.I. (NY Times link) As part of a sweeping effort to transform the F.B.I. into a domestic terrorism prevention agency, Attorney General John Ashcroft has decided to relax restrictions on the bureau's ability to conduct domestic spying in counterterrorism operations, senior government officials said today. Here's the Wash. Post's take on the story.
Register as a Patriot! Quote: As part of the Bush Administration's ongoing efforts to obliterate all traces of terrorism in the United States, the Department of Justice has commenced registration* of each and every American Patriot. By registering all non-terrorists within our borders, it is our intention to make use of the process of elimination to identify the evil ones who walk among us. If you are a non-terrorist (American Patriot), your participation is required. " (It's a joke kids, John Ashcroft doesn't really expect you to register...yet.)
Ashcroft tells Congress that his critics are helping the enemy. "To those who scare peace-loving people with phantoms of lost liberty, my message is this: Your tactics only aid terrorists."
8 former FBI agents "have offered the first substantive critique of the Ashcroft program." A senior Justice Department official who spoke on the condition of anonymity said that none of the changes ordered by Ashcroft would have enabled the FBI to interrupt the Sept. 11 attacks. After the rebuke mentioned previously here, perhaps the worm is turning?
Ashcroft gets a double kick in the groin. It really heartens me to see this. I'm all for finding those responsible, but not at the cost of the Constitution and civil rights. How long before all of the state of Oregon is charged with terrorrism and brought before Bush's special tribunal?