We learn from a Newsday report that in early January 2001, France warned the CIA of an al Qaeda plot to hijack planes:
France’s foreign intelligence service learned as early as January 2001 that al-Qaida was preparing a hijacking plot likely to involve a U.S. airplane, former intelligence officials said Monday, confirming a report that also said the CIA received the warning.
Le Monde newspaper said it had obtained 328 pages of classified documents on Osama bin Laden’s terror network that were drawn up by the French spy service, the DGSE, between July 2000 and October 2001. The documents included a Jan. 5, 2001, intelligence report warning that al-Qaida was at work on a hijacking plot.
Pierre-Antoine Lorenzi, the former chief of staff for the agency’s director at the time, said he remembered the note and that it mentioned only the vague outlines of a hijacking plot — nothing that foreshadowed the scale of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.
“It wasn’t about a specific airline or a specific day, it was not a precise plot,” Lorenzi told The Associated Press. “It was a note that said, ‘They are preparing a plot to hijack an airplane, and they have cited several companies.'”
This information doesn’t mean that Clinton or Bush are at fault for not preventing 9/11 because, as the report said, it was simply too vague, something that Condoleezza Rice confirmed as well during the 9/11 hearings.
AJ Strata at the Strata-Sphere makes an interesting connection:
Now by coincidence this is the time frame the infamous Richard Clark document was being passed around the NSC for comment – the same document which Sandy Bergler stole from the National Archives and shredded in his office. It would make sense that whatever the French detected not only did they pass it on to Clinton’s CIA, but our CIA probably detected it too! So I would wager the smoking gun Sandy Bergler risked serious jail time to destroy was something having to do with early warnings of a Bin Laden plot to highjack airlines, sourced or confirmed by the French.
Jeff Goldstein quips:
Well, the good news is, it blows to all hell Rosie O’Donell’s studied, scientific views on the matter…