Some of the first evidence in the Miami Muslims case is coming out. I’m sure bringing down the tallest building in the U.S. would get the attention of neighbors:
A man accused of leading a group that authorities said was plotting to blow up the Sears Tower wanted to create a distraction so he could free Muslim prisoners at a nearby jail, a prosecutor said Friday.
Narseal Batiste, 32, who is accused of leading the group, was recorded as he spoke to an FBI informant who was posing as an al-Qaida operative, said Assistant U.S. Attorney Jacqueline Arango.
He said that his plan was to blow up the Sears Tower, distract law enforcement and break into a nearby jail to set his “Muslim brothers” free, Arango said.
The video tape is going to be tough to refute:
During a video clip from surveillance footage played by the prosecution, Batiste said that he wanted to start “a real ground war.” Arango said Baptiste likened bin Laden to “an angel” at another meeting.
My impression of these guys is that they were sincere in their stated desire to kill Americans but they were incompetent. But it could be the FBI just wants the general public to believe they were incompetent. That would give other terrorists reason to be less cautious. The desired mindset might be, “Those bozos got caught because they were stupid. We just need to be smarter and we will be fine.” Rather than, “We need to be exceedingly careful. Those Miami dudes were no dummies and still got caught.”
It’s hard to say.
It doesn’t give me a lot of confidence that the first terror cell caught, at least publicly, in a long time appears to be incompetent. It may mean that there are lots of others operating out there that are competent and just aren’t being detected by our law enforcement people.