How About a War on Idiotic Incompetence
Because that would seem to be a necessary first step before we can actually address the "War on Terror," at least as long as Bush in charge. And if this "orange alert" was inspired by a political strategy to blunt Kerry's bounce or distract people from the tanking economy, it's incompetence compounded by mendacity:
The revelation that a mole within al Qaeda was exposed after Washington launched its "orange alert" this month has shocked security experts, who say the outing of the source may have set back the war on terror.
Reuters learned from Pakistani intelligence sources on Friday that computer expert
Mohammad Naeem Noor Khan, arrested secretly in July, was working under coverto help the authorities track down al Qaeda militants in Britain and the United States when his name appeared in U.S. newspapers.
Security experts contacted by Reuters said they were shocked by the revelations that the source whose information led to the alert was identified within days, and that U.S. officials had confirmed his name.
"The whole thing smacks of either incompetence or worse," said Tim Ripley, a security expert who writes for Jane's Defense publications. "You have to ask: what are they doing compromising a deep mole within al Qaeda, when it's so difficult to get these guys in there in the first place?
"It goes against all the rules of counter-espionage, counter-terrorism, running agents and so forth. It's not exactly cloak and dagger undercover work if it's on the front pages every time there's a development, is it?"
A source such as Khan -- cooperating with the authorities while staying in active contact with trusting al Qaeda agents -- would be among the most prized assets imaginable, he said.
"Running agents within a terrorist organization is the Holy Grail of intelligence agencies. And to have it blown is a major setback which negates months and years of work, which may be difficult to recover."
Rolf Tophoven, head of the Institute for Terrorism Research and Security Policy in Essen, Germany, said allowing Khan's name to become public was "very unclever."
"If it is correct, then I would say its another debacle of the American intelligence community. Maybe other serious sources could have been detected or guys could have been captured in the future" if Khan's identity had been protected, he said.