Terror threat clouds 9/11 ceremonies

2011-09-10 22:50

New York - President Barack Obama vowed on Saturday that the United States will never waver in its fight against terrorism as Americans get ready for the 10th anniversary of 9/11 under the shadow of another terror threat.

With the world marking a decade since the deadliest attack on US soil, and the tragedy seared into America's collective memory, communities honoured those lost in the disaster, while New York and Washington beefed up police presence at checkpoints, subway systems and airports on the eve of the anniversary.

Relatives of victims also gathered on a field in Pennsylvania where former president George W Bush and current Vice President Joe Biden will unveil a memorial to those who died aboard hijacked United Airlines Flight 93.

‘Terrorism will never win’

Even as US intelligence agencies chased down what officials said was a credible but unconfirmed threat of an al-Qaeda attack around the September 11 commemorations, Obama assured terrorism would never win.

"Ten years ago, ordinary Americans showed us the true meaning of courage when they rushed up those stairwells, into those flames, into that cockpit," the president said in his radio and internet address.

"We will protect the country we love and pass it safer, stronger and more prosperous to the next generation," he added.

"Today, America is strong and al-Qaeda is on the path to defeat."

In London, ex-British leader Tony Blair, who played a key role in responding to the 9/11 attacks, said Western powers should be praised for reducing the terrorist threat but warned leaders not to let down their guard.

"I think we have knocked out a lot of the al-Qaeda network," he told BBC radio, but "I don't think this is over. I think the radical Islamism which gave rise to this terrorist group is still with us."

The United States led an invasion of Afghanistan after September 11 to oust the Taliban which had been accused of harbouring 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden, but the Islamist group insisted on Saturday it had "no role whatsoever" in the attacks.

Fresh terror threats

The invasion of Afghanistan "will remain a permanent stigma on the face of Western democracy," the group warned in a statement.

The spectre of fresh threats hung over Americans as they readied to mark 9/11. A US official told AFP that "the general outlines of the initial report are three individuals coming into the country" last month, confirming the plot had links to militants in Pakistan.

US officials told US media that up to two of the operatives could be American citizens.

The New York Times reported that word of the plot was passed to US intelligence agents on Wednesday by an informer based in the border region between Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The informer said two US passport holders of Arab ancestry had left Afghanistan and reached the United States as recently as last week, according to the daily.

But the informer's report included only a vague physical description of the two men, the Times noted, with the first name for one given as Suliman, which is common in the Middle East.

Former national security adviser Frances Townsend told CNN on Friday that US spy networks had been alerted to a new threat after intercepting communications from a known, reliable operative in Pakistan.

Necessary precautions

"It's Washington or New York. A car bomb, three men. We know that one or two are US citizens," she said.

The intel prompted US security agencies to scour databases and flight manifests for clues.

"We're looking at travel records, times, dates that people may have travelled, passenger lists, itineraries," a US counterterrorism official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told the Washington Post.

Obama on Friday repeated his order for security agencies to redouble efforts to take all necessary precautions.

There have been no changes to his plans to attend Sunday ceremonies at Ground Zero in New York, and Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

On Saturday Bush joined current Defence Secretary Leon Panetta and Bush-era defence chief Donald Rumsfeld at a Pentagon wreath-laying ceremony to honour the Pentagon workers and airline passengers who died there.

Memories remain raw

Memories remain raw of the day when al-Qaeda hijackers slammed passenger planes into the World Trade Centre and the Pentagon. Almost 3 000 people were killed that day.

A fourth plane crashed in Shanksville, Pennsylvania when the passengers valiantly overpowered the hijackers, and Saturday's ceremony at the "field of honour" pays tribute to the 40 passengers and crew who died.

In New York, heavily armed police patrolled busy streets, trucks and cars were stopped and inspected at checkpoints and bomb-sniffing dogs scoured the subway. Similar actions were seen in Washington.

The anniversary has prompted extensive reflection on how the US fared in post-9/11 security, and while a recent Gallup poll showed Americans split on whether the United States or extremists are winning the "war on terror", officials were firm on US resolve to hunt down terrorists.

America's response to 9/11 showed that when attacked, "we will come and get you", Panetta warned on Friday as he thanked the firefighters and emergency teams who rushed to the Pentagon after it was struck.

"The people who attacked us on 9/11 were trying to weaken America, trying to hurt America," he said. "And instead they strengthened us."

  • Ian - 2011-09-11 05:54

    "It's Washington or New York. A car bomb, three men. We know that one or two are US citizens," she said. Those are not US citizens, probally some raghead traitors that got citizenship because of mommay and daddy who got naturalized citizenship from living in America for over 5 years, so dont bs me, citizens my ass, if these clowns do exist find them and shoot them

      jabski - 2011-09-11 06:45

      @ian dont you understand how the game is played? keeping people in a permanent state of fear (al CIAeda) is a great recipe for denying them their rights, stripping their liberties and keeping their eyes off the real news like their pensions being robbed by wall st and their country becoming a third world facist state.

      Ingwe - 2011-09-11 06:56

      jabski "The US a third world facist state" what parallel universe do you live in. The US maybe many things but it is not a third world fascist state. Please note the correct spelling is fascist not facist

      DougSeanWest - 2011-09-11 07:20

      There will likely be a major new "terrorist" event, likely within the next couple of days. It will be the creation of Luciferian Neocons within the highest ranks of US government and whom Obama serves. Their objective will be two fold 1) the extension of the war into Iran and Syria, a war that they need now to cover up multiple problems all relating to the meltdown and discovery of their plans in the USA and Israel 2)the crack down on key groups inside the USA, especially the 911 truthers and alternate media (internet) who know too much. To effect the latter crackdown they have to say in advance that the threat and perpetrators did not enter the borders of the USA but were in fact US citizens and that the further erosion of civil liberties is justified. Doug Meaker.

      DougSeanWest - 2011-09-11 07:23

      Which objective, logic and ethos is almost identical to the Secrecy Bill about to be passed here in SA. Doug Meaker.

      Ingwe - 2011-09-11 08:17

      Please go to to read more odf Doug's views

      DougSeanWest - 2011-09-11 08:40

      That URL does not reflect my views Ingwe. But since you have been allowed to quote a URL, how about this one - ? over 3000 professionals in various fields that are comfortable putting their names to the statement that the official story of 911 was "make-believe". Are you prepared to put your real name to your views that the official story of 911 was the truth? Doug Meaker.

      Ingwe - 2011-09-11 09:00

      Doug the URL was a joke but why don't you go to and actually spend some time in going through it as it refutes every conspiracy theory about 9/11. That is of course if you have an open mind. By the way I await your predicted major new "terrorist" event, likely within the next couple of days that you claim will happen and which will be organised by the “Luciferian Neocons” so they can justify an attack on Syria and Iran. Let’s agree to talk in a months time when this has not happened.

      Nibiru - 2011-09-11 10:20

      Nice one Ingwe these guys should also check out website

      DougSeanWest - 2011-09-11 11:27

      @Ingwe Fair deal. A month time then. Doug.

      jabski - 2011-09-12 09:41

      @ingwe facism is in existence when the corporations control the government. as for the 3rd world tag, their infrastructure in now admitted by many specialists in the US to be 3rd world. have you ever been there? i think not. as a regular visitor i think i am allowed an opinion on this one.

      slg - 2011-09-12 17:20

      jabski, it's you who doesn't understand reality. This much is clear to every clear thinking person with half a brain.

      jabski - 2011-09-12 22:48

      @sig coming from you i will take that as a compliment

      slg - 2011-09-13 16:11

      :) The fact remains that you believe the CIA has power over people. You believe people do not have free will. You believe this is not a physical universe of free will, time and space. You believe in a victim-reality. You are pretending to be a victim, projecting that on the world, and projecting oppressor onto strong forces for good in the world. Your view is delusional for these clear reasons.

  • Ingwe - 2011-09-11 07:01

    No doubt the 'Tin Foil Hat' brigade of conspiracy theorists will be out in force today telling us that 9/11 was an inside job. Well to all of them I say please see below and see what category you fall under. The US Government Was Behind 9/11 NASA Faked the Moon Landings The Illuminati Run the World AIDS Is a Man-Made Disease Lizard-People Run the World Fluoride in the water is brainwashing us all The Roswell Crash Cover-Up Princess Diana Was Murdered The FBI killed Kennedy Marilyn Monroe killed by the Mafia Elvis Pressley is still alive Aliens built the pyramids If you believe: 1 or 2 of them could be true = Gullible 1-4 = Not quite a retard, but your working on it. 1-6 = Not certifiable yet, but getting close. 1-8 = Complete and utter loon All of them = Your name is David Icke

      DougSeanWest - 2011-09-11 07:28

      There is so much evidence to the effect that 911 was an inside job that it has become a litmus test by which trolls like yourself are identified. And hiding your elitist propaganda behind an African name is pathetic.

      Ingwe - 2011-09-11 08:15

      Doug is that it, I can assure you that I am not a troll and anyone who believes in the above is nothing but a loon. Maybe you could start a new web site where you can publish your views so we can all have a good laugh, you can call it

  • Law01 - 2011-09-11 10:42

    Just Like a Hollywood Movie, A BIG LIE, fooling the already brainwashed Amricans.

      slg - 2011-09-11 17:24

      It's funny reading your posts. You think everyone else who actually are in tune with the real world are wrong, when in fact it's you who's out there in a weird, imaginary world.

  • Law01 - 2011-09-11 11:00

    Ingwe: And how could a Cave Man in Afghanistan with not much technology orchastrate 911?? Have you heard of the "MEDIA" and the POWER of the MEDIA? IT IS SO POWERFUL and indoctrinating that you have become a vistim of it just like billions around the world. Ingwe Have you heard of "Zionism" please go and google Zionism and educate yourself as to the EVIL that is out there to achieve World Domination at OUR expense, with no regard for Humanity, killing millions of innocent civillians in the process. Ingwe Have eyou heard about the Nuclear Bomb that AMERICA unleashed on JAPAN and is there a DAY to remember the 250 000 people that died as a result??

      slg - 2011-09-11 13:39

      Ever heard of actually being connected to reality?

      kitchenboy3 - 2011-09-11 17:12

      it was two bombs actually and yes, the japanese commemorate this day

      Ingwe - 2011-09-11 17:43

      Law01 it is "have you" not "have eyou" just correcting you like you corrected me above LOL

  • LexTruther - 2011-09-11 18:54

    What a crock. Anyone who believes that 'Al Qaeda' or anyone other than the US was behind 9/11 is fast asleep. They have used false flag to push their agenda of "The Patriot Act" and infringe peoples rights, and more so now. And for News24 to run this tripe, do you guys realise there are SO many unchecked facts that covered the truth up, and all you are doing is presenting lies as fact to help propagate this.

      Libertadores - 2011-09-11 21:16

      Who owns News24?

  • LexTruther - 2011-09-11 19:04

    @Ingwe Firstly the site you linked to is really not evidence of anything. I won't argue the 911 topic with you because clearly you are a supporter of the USA. If you do your research, and don't just read debunking sites, read from the people you say are lying before you disbelieve everything, and Icke is there to discredit our truth movement (as is Alex Jones). Listen to John Todd, Bill Cooper on 9/11, Fritz Springmeier, Robert Waneck, Vigilant Citizen, watch a series called the Arrivals from start to end, even if you only watch that series on Youtube and still have the same opinions I will concede.

      slg - 2011-09-12 04:41

      They're fringe people with nothing better to do. That's why hardly anyone believes what they say. Fact.

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