The White House is set to share more details Thursday on the intelligence failures that led to the attempted Christmas Day bombing of a U.S. jetliner.
Spokemsan Robert Gibbs says officials will release a declassified account of a probe into a Nigerian man’s alleged attempt to detonate explosives on a flight as it approached Detroit. President Barack Obama is expected to address the nation on the matter later in the day.
National Security Advisor James Jones tells USA Today that Americans will feel “a certain shock” when they find out what went wrong. But he also says the president is committed to fixing the problems.
Mr. Obama criticized U.S. intelligence agencies earlier this week for failing to stop suspect Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab from getting on a flight from Amsterdam to the U.S. city of Detroit.
He said intelligence agencies had enough evidence to stop Abdulmutallab but failed to analyze it properly.
The 23-year-old Nigerian was charged Wednesday on six criminal counts, including attempted use of a weapon of mass destruction and attempted murder.
Abdulmutallab is accused of trying to blow up the Northwest Airlines plane and its 300 passengers by detonating explosives concealed in his underwear.
Attorney General Eric Holder issued a statement describing the investigation as fast-paced and global, and said it has already yielded valuable intelligence.
If convicted, Abdulmutallab could be sentenced to life in prison.
President Obama has ordered two reviews to determine how intelligence officials failed to adequately act on crucial information – including a letter from the suspect’s father warning U.S. officials about his son’s radical views.
He has also promised changes to airport security and screening protocols, and said the nation’s no-fly and terrorist watchlists were being updated.
Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.
Top-left -President Barack Obama meets with his national security team in the Situation Room of the White House, 05 Jan 2010 – Photo: AP-