Chicago Sun-Times
The scoop from Washington

The Times Square failed attack: Suspect arrested after 53 hours, 20 minutes. Timeline.

| No Comments

WASHINGTON--The Obama White House is very pleased that a suspect was arrested in the attempted Times Square attack 53 hours and 20 minutes after a car full of explosives was discovered in Times Square.

The White House provided a detailed timeline of President Obama and White House actions, from Saturday night to Tuesday afternoon; read at the click.

Below, from the White House.....

Saturday, May 1

At 9:30 pm, the White House Situation Room notified the National Security Staff that an apparent car bomb had been discovered in Times Square.

At 10:04 pm, President Obama began his address to the White House Correspondents Association Dinner in Washington, completing them at 10:21 pm.

At 10:44 pm, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism John Brennan spoke briefly about the incident with David Cohen, Deputy Commissioner of Intelligence, New York Police Department.

Between 10:50 pm and midnight, John Brennan provided President Obama with three updates on the developing situation.

Sunday, May 2

At 12:50 am, the White House press office issued a statement declaring that President Obama commended the New York Police Department for its "excellent work" and "quick action," and said that the federal government stood ready to provide support.

At 9:30 am, John Brennan spoke with Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

At 11 am, John Brennan briefed President Obama aboard Marine 1, and continued the briefing on Air Force One, en route to Louisiana for a trip related to the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The President directed follow up contact with Departments of Homeland Security and Justice as well as with NYPD.

At 1:15 pm, aboard the flight to Louisiana, Press Secretary Robert Gibbs gaggled with reporters and provided information about the updates the President was receiving. He also told reporters that John Brennan had been in touch with Secretary Napolitano, and that Secretary Napolitano had been in touch with New York Mayor Bloomberg.

During the flight, President Obama also called Mayor Bloomberg.

At 2:20 pm, John Brennan spoke to New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly and Deputy Commissioner of Intelligence David Cohen. Brennan repeated President's offer of support and assistance to NYPD.

At 3 pm, Senior Director for Combating Terrorism Strategy Nicholas Rasmussen convened the first interagency meeting on this incident in the White House Situation Room to receive the latest investigation information.

Such meetings typically involve up to a dozen departments and agencies with a policy or operational role to play in the response. The meetings are aimed at exchanging information to ensure that all relevant departments/agencies are up to date and working with a common operating picture, to ensure that all of the diverse capabilities and information available are being utilized, and to provide a forum for discussing issues where coordination between departments/agencies is required.

The meetings usually begin with an operational update from each key law enforcement and intelligence organization working the issue in the field, followed by a discussion of the full range of intelligence and operational issues at play in the incident.

Following this first meeting, the National Security Staff began coordinating its interagency strategy for legislative outreach.

At 3:25, President Obama made a statement in which he praised the New York Police and Fire departments and the FBI for acting "swiftly and aggressively" during the incident. "We're going to do what's necessary to protect the American people, to determine who is behind this potentially deadly act, and to see that justice is done," the President said.

At 7 pm, aboard the flight back to Washington, Robert Gibbs again gaggled with reporters and answered a few more questions on the New York incident.

Throughout the day, until 8 pm, John Brennan provided regular updates on the New York situation to President Obama. Brennan relayed questions and taskings to appropriate departments and agencies.

Monday, May 3

At 8 am, the National Security Staff convened an interagency meeting on the incident in the White House Situation Room.

Later that morning, the National Security Staff drafted briefing materials for President Obama to call the Time Square vendors who first alerted authorities to the suspicious vehicle.

At noon, John Brennan briefed President Obama on the situation in the Oval Office. John Brennan briefed the President again at 1 pm on new developments and provided answers to his earlier questions.

At 1:10 pm, Robert Gibbs conducted a briefing for White House correspondents and took several questions on the New York incident.

At 1:28 pm, President Obama telephoned Duane Jackson, a 58-year-old handbag vendor, to thank him for his vigilance and quick action.

At 3 pm, Director of the National Counterterrorism Center Michael Leiter convened an interagency meeting on the incident in the White House Situation Room.

At 5 pm, John Brennan briefed President Obama in the Oval Office. The President asked several questions that required follow-up action.

At 8:50 pm, John Brennan updated President Obama on the situation.

At 8:55 pm, John Brennan updated President Obama on the situation and provided responses to earlier questions and taskings from the President.

At 10:50 pm, John Brennan updated President Obama situation. The President asked several questions and directed several follow-up actions, including offer of assistance to NYPD.

Just before midnight, Faisal Shahzad was arrested at New York's JFK Airport.

Tuesday, May 4

At 12:05 am, John Brennan briefed President Obama on the arrest of Faisal Shahzad. The President raised several questions and issued follow-up taskings related to circumstances of arrest.

Shahzad was first questioned by agents under the public safety exception to Miranda to determine whether there was an imminent threat to public safety, per normal procedures.

DOJ/FBI briefed NSS, DHS, NCTC, CIA, and DNI on the interrogation and consulted those agencies on the possibility that a Miranda warning would be provided.

After the agents made the determination that no imminent threat was identified, the suspect was provided with a Miranda warning, and he waived. The suspect continues to talk to agents and has provided useful information.

At 1:00 am, Brennan spoke to Deputy Commissioner Cohen of NYPD.

At 1:30 am, Attorney General Eric Holder issued a statement on camera about the arrest.

At 7:06 am, John Brennan updated President Obama on the situation.

At 7:39 am, John Brennan updated President Obama on the situation.

At 1:00 am, Brennan spoke to Deputy Commissioner Cohen of NYPD.

At 1:30 am, Attorney General Eric Holder issued a statement on camera about the arrest.

At 7:06 am, John Brennan updated President Obama on the situation.

At 7:39 am, John Brennan updated President Obama on the situation.

Later Tuesday morning, President Obama called Lance Orton and Officers Wayne Rhatigan and Pam Duffy to thank them for their vigilance. Lance Orton and Duane Jackson (who the President called Monday) were the vendors who first reported the specious vehicle. Officers Rhatigan and Duffy were the officers on the scene whose actions led to the evacuation of the area and the immediate response.

At 9:30 am, John Brennan briefed President Obama in the Oval Office.

At 1:00 pm, after receiving an update from John Brennan and raising some questions to be discussed at the weekly CT/Homeland Security meeting, President Obama called CBP Commissioner Alan Bersin to thank him for his agency's rapid response and asked him to be sure to pass along congratulations to his entire team.

At 3:30, the President convened the weekly CT/Homeland Security meeting in the White House Situation Room. Participants include: Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, National Security Advisor Gen. James Jones, Defense Secretary Robert Gates, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Michael Mullen, Attorney General Eric Holder, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism John Brennan, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, Deputy National Security Advisor Tom Donilon, Director of Central Intelligence Leon Panetta, National Security Agency Director Lt. Gen. Keith Alexander, and Deputy FBI Director John Pistole, Director of the Intelligence Staff for the Office of the DNI Lt. Gen. John Kimmons, and Director of the National Counterterrorism Center Michael Leiter.

Leave a comment

Get the Sweet widget

More widgets

Video

Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

Stay in touch

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on May 4, 2010 5:36 PM.

Michelle Obama at science bowl says White House will host a national science fair was the previous entry in this blog.

Obama, Biden interview Diane Wood, Chicago judge up for Supreme Court is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.