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The Nigerian Lawyers Up

9:09 AM, Dec 30, 2009 • By MICHAEL GOLDFARB
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Buried three paragraphs from the end of the report in today's Washington Post comes what ought to be the lede:

Abdulmutallab remains in a Detroit area prison and, after initial debriefings by the FBI, has restricted his cooperation since securing a defense attorney, according to federal officials.

It sounds like he was singing when they first got him, and of course we now know that the government already had enough information on him to justify sending a Blackwater hit team after him, but now that the people with all that information are finally in a position to ask the questions -- LAWYER. And let's not pretend that the FBI was asking him the right questions over the weekend as they told reporters they were still working under the assumption that the Nigerian had "acted alone." The CIA may have known he was al Qaeda months ago, but the FBI apparently didn't know until Monday -- after al Qaeda claimed responsibility for the attack. But now he's got a lawyer, and we can't interrogate him, we can't smack him around, we can't lay a finger on him.

This administration has never been as interested in preventing the next attack as properly prosecuting the last one.