By BRIAN ROSS,ABC
you mean we weren’t already investigating terrorist leads?!
In a revealing admission,President Barack Obama said today he was directing U.S. intelligence agencies to begin to do something many had assumed they were already doing:"[A]ssigning specific responsibility for investigating all leads on high priority threats so that these leads are pursued and acted upon aggressively."
"That is a shock because we had such a follow-up system when I was there,"said Richard Clarke,the White House counter-terrorism director in the Clinton and Bush administrations. Clarke,who worked on the Obama transition team,is now an ABC News consultant.
The President said he would hold his staff accountable but said no one person was responsible or would be fired. "Ultimately the buck stops with me,"the President said.
In announcing his review of the failures that allowed a "known terrorist"to board a flight to Detroit with a bomb on Christmas Day,the President said there was "a failure to connect the dots of intelligence that existed across our intelligence community."
The review found that "no single component of the counter-terrorism community assumed responsibility for the threat reporting and followed it through."
Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was apprehended on Christmas after allegedly attempting to detonate explosives sewn into his underwear on a Northwest Airlines flight from Amsterdam to Detroit. After the incident,Abdulmutallab’s father revealed that he had contacted U.S. officials in Nigeria and warned them that his 23-year-old son had extreme views and might pose a threat to the U.S.