Thursday, December 17, 2009

FBI-DHS Spar Over Intelligence Access

Apparently a disconnect exists between the FBI and Homeland Security over information sharing:
The White House has taken the unusual step of wading into a dispute between the nation's top law enforcement agencies over how much terrorist-threat information should be shared with state and local law enforcement, according to officials.
The White House involvement reflects the unusual nature of recent high-profile terrorism cases, including that of alleged bomb-maker Najibullah Zazi, which along with some undisclosed terrorist "activities" have raised tensions between the FBI and Department of Homeland Security, officials said.
Those tensions were aired during a weekend meeting at the White House with President Obama's counterterrorism chief, John Brennan, Attorney General Eric Holder, FBI Director Robert Mueller, DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano and others, according to officials.
DHS officials say information about on-going investigations should be shared broadly so local authorities can identify threats in their communities, but FBI officials say some of that information could compromise their investigations and ultimately sabotage anti-terrorism efforts.
On Tuesday, Napolitano and Holder announced "major steps" to improve the sharing of threat information, but such new efforts may be undermined by the recent tensions, one U.S. official said.
Didn't inter-agency rivalries and turf protection put the U.S. at risk prior to 9/11?

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