Newsweek Cover: 'God Bless America'

Intelligence Officials Fear Between 30 to 50 Teams of Terrorists At Large



Two Weeks Before Attacks, FBI On Trail of Two Suspected Hijackers



FBI: Hijacker On Plane That Struck North Tower of World Trade Center Was Seen

In Norfolk, Va. Last Winter, Possibly Surveying Navy Base



Sep 16, 2001, 01:00 ET from Newsweek

    NEW YORK, Sept. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- As the FBI launches the largest manhunt
 in history tracking the 19 suicide bombers from Tuesday's attacks on the U.S.
 and their backers, top intelligence officials tell Newsweek that they fear
 between 30 to 50 teams of terrorists are still on the loose, according to a
 report in the current issue of Newsweek.
     (Photo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20010915/HSSU001 )
     In another development, according to intelligence sources, the FBI was on
 the trail of two of the suspected hijackers two weeks before the attacks,
 Newsweek reports.  On August 21 the CIA passed along information to the
 Immigration and Naturalization Service on a man who belonged on the "Watch
 List" for terror suspects.  The man, Khalid al-Midhar, had been videotaped in
 Kuala Lampur talking to one of the terrorists involved in the bombing of the
 U.S.S. Cole, in which 17 U.S. Servicemen died.  The man is now in jail in
 Yemen. When the INS ran its database, it found that al-Midhar was already
 inside the U.S. The CIA asked the FBI to find him and an associate, Salem
 Alhamzi.  But the bureau didn't have much to go on since they listed their
 U.S. residence as "the Marriott Hotel in New York," report Investigative
 Correspondents Michael Isikoff and Mark Hosenball and Assistant Managing
 Editor Evan Thomas, in the September 24 cover story "God Bless America" (on
 newsstands Monday, September 17).  There are ten Marriott-run hotels in New
 York and the FBI checked all of them and found nothing.  Al-Midhar and Alhamzi
 were listed among the five hijackers of American Airlines Flight 77.
     In another development, suspected hijacker Mohammed Atta, 33, who was on
 the plane that struck the north tower of the World Trade Center, may have
 begun casing Boston's Logan Airport more than six months ago, according to law
 enforcement authorities.  Newsweek has learned that he was seen last winter in
 Norfolk, Va., where, the FBI believes, he was surveying the giant U.S. Navy
 base as a target, Newsweek reports.
     In a separate article, Chief Political Correspondent Howard Fineman
 reports that on Thursday in the Oval Office, President George W. Bush met with
 two senators from New York and Virginia about getting aid for the devastation.
 They got promises of aid and warlike words all four senators yearned for.
 "When I take action," Bush told them, "I'm not going to fire a $2 million
 missile at a $10 empty tent and hit a camel in the butt. It's going to be
 decisive."
     In other developments in the continuing coverage of the terrorist attacks
 on the U.S., Newsweek reports:
 
     *  A senior European intelligence official tells Newsweek that some of the
        hijackers may have had Swiss bank accounts, which have now been frozen
        by Swiss authorities.
 
     *  According to intelligence sources, bin Laden's agents are involved in
        drug running and he receives "blood money" payment from frightened Arab
        regimes who want to buy protection from his zealotry. According to U.S.
        intelligence sources, bin Laden is able to pay pensions to the families
        of suicide bombers.
 
     *  The pattern of bin Laden's terrorism is to insert operatives into a
        country where they are "sleepers" burrowed deep in the local culture,
        leading normal lives while awaiting orders. Intelligence sources
        believe that one or two control agents run by bin Laden's Al Qaeda may
        have slipped into the United States in the last couple of weeks to
        activate the airliner plot.
 
     *  Atta lived in Germany for a time, studying at the Technical University
        in Hamburg. According to German authorities, he is suspected in the
        bombing of an Israeli bus in 1986, when he was only 18 or 19 years old.
        If true, he should have been denied immigration visas. Instead, he was
        able to move freely between Germany and the United States.
 
        (Read Newsweek's news releases at http://www.Newsweek.MSNBC.com.
                              Click "Pressroom.")
 
                     MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT -  Click Here
                http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X65442495
 
 

SOURCE Newsweek
    NEW YORK, Sept. 16 /PRNewswire/ -- As the FBI launches the largest manhunt
 in history tracking the 19 suicide bombers from Tuesday's attacks on the U.S.
 and their backers, top intelligence officials tell Newsweek that they fear
 between 30 to 50 teams of terrorists are still on the loose, according to a
 report in the current issue of Newsweek.
     (Photo:  http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20010915/HSSU001 )
     In another development, according to intelligence sources, the FBI was on
 the trail of two of the suspected hijackers two weeks before the attacks,
 Newsweek reports.  On August 21 the CIA passed along information to the
 Immigration and Naturalization Service on a man who belonged on the "Watch
 List" for terror suspects.  The man, Khalid al-Midhar, had been videotaped in
 Kuala Lampur talking to one of the terrorists involved in the bombing of the
 U.S.S. Cole, in which 17 U.S. Servicemen died.  The man is now in jail in
 Yemen. When the INS ran its database, it found that al-Midhar was already
 inside the U.S. The CIA asked the FBI to find him and an associate, Salem
 Alhamzi.  But the bureau didn't have much to go on since they listed their
 U.S. residence as "the Marriott Hotel in New York," report Investigative
 Correspondents Michael Isikoff and Mark Hosenball and Assistant Managing
 Editor Evan Thomas, in the September 24 cover story "God Bless America" (on
 newsstands Monday, September 17).  There are ten Marriott-run hotels in New
 York and the FBI checked all of them and found nothing.  Al-Midhar and Alhamzi
 were listed among the five hijackers of American Airlines Flight 77.
     In another development, suspected hijacker Mohammed Atta, 33, who was on
 the plane that struck the north tower of the World Trade Center, may have
 begun casing Boston's Logan Airport more than six months ago, according to law
 enforcement authorities.  Newsweek has learned that he was seen last winter in
 Norfolk, Va., where, the FBI believes, he was surveying the giant U.S. Navy
 base as a target, Newsweek reports.
     In a separate article, Chief Political Correspondent Howard Fineman
 reports that on Thursday in the Oval Office, President George W. Bush met with
 two senators from New York and Virginia about getting aid for the devastation.
 They got promises of aid and warlike words all four senators yearned for.
 "When I take action," Bush told them, "I'm not going to fire a $2 million
 missile at a $10 empty tent and hit a camel in the butt. It's going to be
 decisive."
     In other developments in the continuing coverage of the terrorist attacks
 on the U.S., Newsweek reports:
 
     *  A senior European intelligence official tells Newsweek that some of the
        hijackers may have had Swiss bank accounts, which have now been frozen
        by Swiss authorities.
 
     *  According to intelligence sources, bin Laden's agents are involved in
        drug running and he receives "blood money" payment from frightened Arab
        regimes who want to buy protection from his zealotry. According to U.S.
        intelligence sources, bin Laden is able to pay pensions to the families
        of suicide bombers.
 
     *  The pattern of bin Laden's terrorism is to insert operatives into a
        country where they are "sleepers" burrowed deep in the local culture,
        leading normal lives while awaiting orders. Intelligence sources
        believe that one or two control agents run by bin Laden's Al Qaeda may
        have slipped into the United States in the last couple of weeks to
        activate the airliner plot.
 
     *  Atta lived in Germany for a time, studying at the Technical University
        in Hamburg. According to German authorities, he is suspected in the
        bombing of an Israeli bus in 1986, when he was only 18 or 19 years old.
        If true, he should have been denied immigration visas. Instead, he was
        able to move freely between Germany and the United States.
 
        (Read Newsweek's news releases at http://www.Newsweek.MSNBC.com.
                              Click "Pressroom.")
 
                     MAKE YOUR OPINION COUNT -  Click Here
                http://tbutton.prnewswire.com/prn/11690X65442495
 
 SOURCE  Newsweek