From: Otis Willie
Subject: Seeking Terrorist Plots, F.B.I. Is Tracking Hundreds of Muslims
Organization: The American War Library
NNTP-Posting-Date: Mon, 07 Oct 2002 15:30:05 EDT
Date: Mon, 07 Oct 2002 19:30:05 GMT
Seeking Terrorist Plots, F.B.I. Is Tracking Hundreds of Muslims
(EXCERPT) Sun Oct 6, 3:09 PM ET, by PHILIP SHENON and DAVID JOHNSTON
The New York Times
WASHINGTON, Oct. 5 The Federal Bureau of Investigation is trying to
make an open book of the lives of hundreds of mostly young, mostly
Muslim men in the United States in the belief that Al Qaeda-trained
terrorists remain in this country, awaiting instructions to attack.
Senior law enforcement officials say the surveillance campaign is
being carried out by every major F.B.I. office in the country and
involves 24-hour monitoring of the suspects' telephone calls, e-mail
messages and Internet use, as well as scrutiny of their credit-card
charges, their travel and their visits to neighborhood gathering
places, including mosques.
The campaign, which has also involved efforts to recruit the suspects'
friends and family members as government informers, has raised alarm
from civil liberties groups and some Arab-American and Muslim leaders.
The men are suspected of ties to Al Qaeda or other groups affiliated
with Osama bin Laden ( news - web sites)'s terrorist network.
Law enforcement officials say the surveillance program has provided
vital evidence to support a string of arrests and indictments around
the country since late summer in western New York, in Detroit, in
Seattle and, on Friday, in Portland, Ore. of Americans and others
accused of conspiring in terrorist cells to assist Al Qaeda.
Still, the F.B.I. has acknowledged that it has no evidence of any
imminent terrorist threat posed by the so-called sleeper cells
connected to Al Qaeda. Federal law enforcement officials say there is
no sign of a terrorist cell operating on American soil that, in its
level of commitment and training, resembles anything like the team of
suicide hijackers who trained in the United States for several months
before carrying out the Sept. 11 attacks.
They concede that the domestic threat posed by Qaeda cells may at
times have been overstated, especially after the arrest last May of
Jose Padilla, an American also known as Abdullah al-Muha...
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