As the Senate Intelligence Committee continues their investigation into details surrounding the events of September 11, 2001, more questions have
arisen as to the why, known hijackers and terrorists were not actively tracked prior to 9/11/2001. In the Tuesday edition of the New York Times, an
article quoting German intelligence officials, said they had given the CIA the first name and telephone number of Marwan al-Shehhi, and asked U.S.
officials to track him. The Germans said they never heard back from U.S. officials until after Sept. 11. The Senate Intelligence Commission has a May
27 deadline to finish its investigation, however they have asked for a two-month extension, due to disputes with the administration over access to
documents and witnesses.
Marwan Al-Shehhi was a member of the Al Qaeda cell in Hamburg, Germany, and a roommate of suspected Sept. 11 ringleader Mohammed Atta (search), who
took over American Airlines Flight 11, which crashed into the north tower of the World Trade Center.
A U.S. official told The Associated Press late Monday that thousands of full names of suspected terrorists come across the intelligence community's
screens on a regular basis, making them hard to always track.
"A first name — and a common one at that — is a scrap of information and doesn't take you anywhere without the benefit of hindsight," the U.S.
official said, speaking on condition of anonymity.
[Edited on 2-24-2004 by worldwatcher]