The tragedy in the midst of this farce was that it was all so much easier. And the problem had nothing to do with any of the myriad of shinplaster grotesqueries we have come to expect from the Department of Homeland Security. Obama’s statement “that all appropriate measures be taken to increase security for air travel” is totally beside the point.
It is really simple, the American Embassy in Lagos, Nigeria screwed up bigtime. Even a minor consular officer like a grade 6 Foreign Service Officer can understand that, even if no one in the press or the Obama Administration seems to. Unfortunately it appears no minor consular officer ever got their hands on this in Lagos. This screw up was handled by the big guys at the Embassy.
Once a credible person of the stature of Abdulmutullab’s father, multimillionaire Umaru Mutullab, one of the most important figures in banking in all of Africa, contacted the Embassy and said he feared his son had been “radicalized,” the Embassy should have immediately reviewed the young man’s American multiple entry visa granted to him by the American Embassy in London in 2008 and placed a hold on it pending a hearing. But that’s not what happened. According to the Department of State, Umaru had a face to face meeting at the request of high officials in Nigerian Security with top American embassy officials on November 19th. And the records at State show what did happen. [continued…]