David Shepherd: News Blog

Journalist's Notebook

CNN Reporting: Chicago Gay-Friendly Synagogue Target of Thwarted Terror Attack

By: David Shepherd [dshepherd@wtwo.com] – Saturday, October 30, 2010

CNN is reporting a small synagogue dedicated to serving lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered people in Chicago was one of the two intended targets of Friday’s thwarted terror attacks against Chicago.

The report comes from the synagogue’s co-president.  He claims the Or Chadash was notified through a rabbi who claimed the word came from authorities.

No one in the Intellegence field or the government has confirmed these claims.  There has been no public release of the exact locations targeted.

CNN reports Chicago FBI spokesman Royden Rice would not confirm or deny that Or Chadash was a target.

“We notified both targets yesterday,” Rice told CNN Saturday. “We always notify potential victims of crime. If they wish to reveal who they are, it’s up to them.”

October 30, 2010 Posted by | News & Current Events | Leave a comment

Explosives Found In Packages In Route to United States

By: David Shepherd [dshepherd@wtwo.com] – Friday, October 29, 2010

NBC News Photo

A terror attack on targets in the United States has been thwarted but law enforcement officials aren’t letting their guard down.

President Barack Obama briefed the country from the White House Press Briefing Room Friday afternoon calling the plot “a credible threat against our country.”

Mr. Obama confirmed earlier reports that packages carrying explosives were found aboard U.S. bound cargo planes in Dubai and the United Kingdom, Friday.

That discovery prompted heightened inspections of cargo plans and trucks in cities across the country.

 Terror officials believe al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula was behind the failed attack.  The devices were found in

The President said, “Although we are still pursuing all the facts, we do know that the packages originated in Yemen.  We also know that al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, a terrorist group based in Yemen, continues to plan attacks against our homeland, our citizens, and our friends and allies.”

 Mr. Obama said the packages were being sent to two Jewish places of worship in Chicago. 

 Synagogues in Chicago are now being warned to be on alert.

The President addressing the nation about the thwarted terror attacks on the United States

The President reminded Americans about the threat we live under.  “The events of the past 24 hours underscores the necessity of remaining vigilant against terrorism.”

Following the President’s remarks, White House counterterrorism chief John Brennan took the podium to discuss the situation in more detail. He said the devices were “in a form that was designed to try to carry out some kind of attack”.  Clearly, from the initial observation, the initial analysis that was done, the material that was found … was intended to do harm.”

U.S. officials told NBC News the amount of explosives in one of the packages was about five times greater than quantity carried by the would-be Christmas Day bomber. That would make it slightly less than a pound, but that’s a significant amount.

It was unclear how the devices were to be set off.

 FedEx and UPS have suspended receiving shipments from Yemen for “the foreseeable future.”

October 30, 2010 Posted by | News & Current Events | , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment