James Clapper is the Director of National Intelligence. It's safe to say his job is to know about terrorism, not just in the U.S. but across the world. So when he sat down with Diane Sawyer this week and she asked him about the 12 terrorists recently arrested in London and he not only drew a blank but later admitted he had no idea what she was talking about, that's worrisome. Maybe now we know why Attorney General Eric Holder said yesterday that he feels like we're "missing something."
This time even Diane Sawyer picks up on the shocker:
Here's the relevant section from the printed ABC News story. Clapper's office is defending itself by calling Sawyer's question "ambiguous" (emphasis added):
Sawyer sat down with the trio of officials on the same day that British authorities arrested 12 men in England.
Brennan and Napolitano knew of the arrests and said that the plot would not have threatened the United States, but Director Clapper, who briefs the president daily on the nation's security, appeared to be unfamiliar with the events in London.
"First of all, London," Sawyer said. "How serious is it? Any implication that it was coming here? ... Director Clapper?"
"London?" Clapper said, before Brennan entered the conversation explaining the arrests.
Later in the interview, Sawyer returned to the subject.
"I was a little surprised you didn't know about London," Sawyer told Clapper.
"Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't," he replied.
After the interview, Clapper's office declined to say whether he knew about the specific disrupted plot but issued a statement:
"The question about this specific news development was ambiguous. The DNI's knowledge of the threat streams in Europe is profound and multi-dimensional, and any suggestion otherwise is inaccurate."