Pentagon blocks Able Danger testimony to Judiciary Committee

[JURIST] The US Defense Department [official website] said Tuesday that it has banned military officers and intelligence analysts from testifying on "Able Danger" [Wikipedia profile; JURIST report], the highly classified US Army intelligence program alleged to have identified Mohammed Atta [Wikipedia profile] and three other 9/11 hijackers as suspected al-Qaeda terrorists prior to the 9/11 attacks [JURIST news archive]. The personnel were scheduled to testify at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing [witness list] Wednesday. This news follows a report that an unnamed Pentagon employee had been ordered to destroy Able Danger documents [JURIST report] prior to the hearing. A Defense Department spokesperson said that it is not possible to discuss Able Danger in an open public forum. Judiciary Chairman Arlen Specter (R-PA) expressed surprise at the decision and said that the American people had a right to know about the program's findings, thought to have been ignored by the 9/11 Commission [official website]. The Defense Intelligence Agency's liason officer to Able Danger, Lt. Col. Anthony Shaffer, said that he was told that the hearing would be classified [NewsMax report]. The New York Times has more. A live webcast of the committee hearing is available beginning Wednesday at 9:30 AM ET.



 

About Paper Chase

Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

© Copyright JURIST Legal News and Research Services, Inc., 2013.