“Police chief calls threats against LA and Australia `rhetoric,'” from AP, with thanks to Scaramouche:
Los Angeles’s police chief dismissed as “just rhetoric” a taped threat by a purported al-Qaida member that was aired by ABC News on the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.
“Yesterday, London and Madrid. Tomorrow, Los Angeles and Melbourne, Allah willing,” the masked man says on the tape that ABC said it received Saturday. The man “” believed to be an American “” speaks in unaccented English.
“And this time, don’t count on us demonstrating restraint and compassion,” he says on the tape, aired Sunday on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”
The network said the tape had been delivered to ABC in Pakistan. The man on the 11-minute tape, wearing a black turban with most of his face covered, called the attacks of four years ago “blessed events” before making the threats against the U.S. and Australian cities.
ABC said the man is believed to be Adam Yahiye Gadahn, an American from California who is wanted by the FBI. The CIA said Sunday it was aware of the report but had no immediate comment about the tape’s authenticity.
Counter-terror officials believe Gadahn also may be the person on a 75-minute video given to ABC News last year in Pakistan. That tape was later deemed authentic.
Los Angeles Chief William Bratton said officials were aware of no clear threat to the city and didn’t see the tape as significant.
“At this juncture, we feel it’s just rhetoric,” Bratton told NBC’s “Today.–He is a low-level operative. They put him out front during the national election and used him in a similar fashion.”