The war against terrorism took a major turn yesterday. Attorney General John Ashcroft announced an al Qaeda plot in this country to set off a so-called "dirty bomb" has been foiled. Ashcroft identified the suspect as Jose Padilla, who converted to Islam and took the name Abdullah al Muhajir. Ashcroft said al Mujahir had trained with the enemy, including how to wire explosive devices and research radiological dispersion devices. Al mujahir was arrested May 8 as he arrived in Chicago on a flight from Pakistan. He is now in the custody of the Defense Department as an enemy combatant.
The Associated Press quoted U.S. officials as saying that Washington was the probable target. The plot is not believed to have passed the initial planning stage. But Pentagon officials say the suspect was trained in nuclear devices in Pakistan.
This is a case where the CIA and FBI worked well together. Let's hope they keep it up, because this isn't the last threat against our country. I'm Cal Thomas in Washington.