In mid-2004 we followed the apparent terrorist dry run that took place in late June of that year on a Northwest Airlines flight from Detroit to Los Angeles. We followed the story and even played a role in identifying the Syrian band on the flight in numeorus posts including “Angel Band” and “Not, repeat not Kulna Sawa.” Passenger Annie Jacobsen, whose “Terror in the skies — again?” originally reported the story, expanded the story into the book Terror in the Skies: Why 9/11 Could Happen Again.
Now Audrey Hudson reports:
The inspector general for Homeland Security late Friday released new details of what federal air marshals say was a terrorist dry run aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 327 from Detroit to Los Angeles on June 29, 2004.
Several portions of the report remain redacted. The release stems from a Freedom of Information request by The Washington Times in April 2006. The Times first reported on July 22 that this and other probes and dry runs were occurring on commercial flights since the September 11 terrorist attacks.
Hudson reprints a few excerpts from the 51-page report and notes that the Washington Times will print the full report on Wednesday. The IG report assesses how the Department of Homeland Security handled the “suspicious” event and why it was not logged into the database of suspicious events. The excerpts don’t support the federal characterization of the events as a terrorist dry run, but they back up Jacobsen’s account. And the full report, I understand, does much, much more, reporting, for example, contary to what DHS said at the time, that the visas on which the group was traveling were in fact expired.
Via Flying Imams.
UPDATE: The Washington Times notes blog coverage of their story here.
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