Oh no, the Terror Alert has been raised to “Con-Job” Orange!

Did you ever have any doubts that the Terror Alert system was just a ploy to ratchet up fear so as to win elections? Well, you should have, because it also turns out the CIA was conned into a lot of those fear-eliciting alert incrementings.

A self-styled Nevada codebreaker convinced the CIA he could decode secret terrorist targeting information sent through Al Jazeera broadcasts, prompting the Bush White House to raise the terror alert level to Orange (high) in December 2003, with Tom Ridge warning of “near-term attacks that could either rival or exceed what we experience on September 11,” according to a new report in Playboy.

The report deals another blow to the credibility of the Department of Homeland Security’s color-coded terror alert system, and comes after Ridge’s claim that the system was used as a political tool when he was DHS secretary.

Okay, so it WAS used as a political tool, acording to Tom Ridge. But it was ALSO manipulated by con-men for money (and I don’t just mean Darth Cheney).

Read more at TPM Muckraker.

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Oh no, the Terror Alert has been raised to “Con-Job” Orange!
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4 thoughts on “Oh no, the Terror Alert has been raised to “Con-Job” Orange!

  1. 1

    More than once I saw the “OMG the terror alert level at this time is ORANGE!!!” signs in the elevators at the local airport. They were laminated and every time I went they were in the same places. I came to suspect that the signs never moved or changed because the Terra-Alert was pure BS, and more or less meant to stay at Orange, except in those very rare instances when they’d drop it to yellow to imply that they weren’t making it all up.

  2. 2

    Something must have been going very wrong with my PageViews plugin, coz you can’t have posted a comment on this thread when it was set to zero views. Sooo, yeah. Thanks for tipping me off that I’m not just going through a traffic lull. It was only registering views for “registered users” — e.g., me.

    According to Wikipedia, the terror alert system was at yellow during the following periods:

    Elevated (Yellow)

    * March 12 – September 10, 2002
    * September 25, 2002 – February 6, 2003
    * February 28 – March 16, 2003
    * April 17 – May 20, 2003
    * May 31, 2003 – August 1, 2004
    * November 10, 2004 – July 8, 2005
    * August 12, 2005 – present

    — and was orange pretty well the rest of the time. Green and Blue have NEVER been used. It’s been at Red once — when that British airline terrorism plot was foiled.

  3. 3

    Alrighty Dude, have to weigh in on this one… While I have no doubt that the Terror Alerts were a big scam to increase Crayola’s profits, I wouldn’t take anything printed in Playboy for face value…

    I mean.. I ONLY read Playboy for the articles… about politics…

  4. 4

    Their articles about politics are surprisingly good, though. I think because they’re “just a ‘gentlemans magazine'”, they can get away with a lot. Rolling Stone too. And so far, I haven’t seen anything to suggest that this particular article of theirs is anything less than rigorously checked.

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