I listened for an hour while they went through the posts they had intercepted. The problem was the posts they were decoding the encryptions on were from weeks ago. Why?
That question I would ask Ben, Frank and Eric in a more private setting. I passed out the copies of the intercepts that Robert was collecting every day.
The new bounty on Vicky and I put a new emphasis on monitoring the internet and phone and airport traffic from not only the Middle East but Europe, Africa and Central America.
All the known assassins worldwide were on the Interpol site, but there were holes and we knew it. New credentials could be bought in almost any country for a few thousand dollars; they would withstand even the most sophisticated checks.
Specialists in that business scoured birth certificate, death records, school records, social security and tax records, along with many more. With only a few days notice they could match up records – even down to the birthday – for the customer.
With all the school and college records online and easily hacked, it was easy to install portraits in the files to match thing up. For the really critical customer, plastic surgeons could alter the facial profile so that facial recognition would be ineffective.
It had become common place in intelligence circle briefs to see new alerts about the new suspected identity for foreign agents.
The only thing they could not change was the DNA signature one left behind and fingerprints. There were rumors that a process had been perfected that would alter fingerprints enough that when ran through the systems, the individual could not be identified by them.
The real kicker was the new ones getting into the business. They were younger, in better physical shape, highly educated and a lot more skilled and capable of fitting into the role they needed to play to get close to their subject.
We went to lunch and spent time working on the angles for Harrisburg. It was a good thing; the trip Ben had made to the Harrisburg police chief had not been productive and neither had a search of the immigration files for the area. Many of the files were incomplete, either by laziness or design.
The last few minutes before lunch was brought were spent discussing the two I had in Fort Smith. The groups wanted two more nights of questions. That suited my plans about right; I wanted them gone as soon as possible in ashes. Wednesday was my target date for them to meet Allah.
I still had not heard from Ben-David if they were finished with the pair; I would make that call later.
Harry met me in the hall after lunch to tell me that the coffee and donuts were behind the divider with the staff waiting on further instructions.
“Put them out at 1255; I will be there at 1259 sharp,” I replied.
He thought a minute, smiled and shook his head and walked away. He knew the news crew hated to be rushed but they enjoyed rushing everyone else. Trying to balance a pad, pen, coffee and a donut at one time was a combination for a mess in the lap.
At 1259 I placed my mug on the podium, went to the crowded table and quickly picked one of my favorites on a napkin and said, “Let’s get this show started.” They were forced to scramble for seats as the questions started from those who had been first to the table.
“First I want to thank everyone who sent cards and flowers and your prayers for the families of my men who were killed and injured.”
I answered question for forty five minutes before I shut the press conference down. Those highly educated individuals did not have a clue outside the world of politics. I got tired of answering the same question worded a dozen different ways.
I think it was Einstein who said, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” This bunch was border line insane.
The most insane question came from one of the big three reporters, “When are you going to allow media representatives to accompany you on these foreign trips?”
“When you decide that it is OK to be shot at and blown up, I might consider it. You have to understand that you are a target anytime you are around me from the looks of things. I will not supply security for you,” I replied.
Back in Section Twelve Ben had started things moving towards Harrisburg. The Harrisburg DHS field office was sent ten more agents.
The big water park was loaded with security cameras. Agents were dispatched to secure access to security films from the last 60 days and to secure continued live access to the cameras.
All the films would be run through the facial scanners looking for anyone who made repeated visits to the water park. Then a more detailed look would be made of their actions for that day and to cross check the post to see if anything could be viewed as a report back to General Kedar.
After much discussion in Section Twelve – which included the President, Eric, Frank and Ben – there were what amounted to orders setting more surveillance in place at both borders. Tiam had sent Jaed a message that once the place was decided that the explosives would be sent to him. To me that meant that the explosives were either in Mexico or Canada.
I was betting Canada for several reasons, one being that the cartel was on the ropes temporally. The uprising had cost them many of the revolutionaries and leaders; the rest – for now – were trying to lay low and avoid arrest. I figured that they still wanted nothing to do with anything that may put a light on them.
The other reason was Canada had lost its mind and was allowing thousands of refugees to settle every month. They were coming from Africa, Syria, Iraq and even Iran. The EU was sending them via England directly to Canada with little or no checks on them. The UN was issuing travel permits with practically no background checks. These were from some of the worst sponsors of terrorism there was.
Another reason was there was so much unguarded border with Canada that it would be easy to get several hundred pounds of explosives across. With those thoughts left on the table, I started home.
Jenny called while I was being driven through Annapolis; the town of C-ville had filed a suit against JBG for the sewage issue with the truck stop and was asking for an injunction stopping all construction until the suit was settled. The hearing on the injunction was tomorrow morning.
Howard, Fine and Howard would be waiting at the office when I arrived there.
I called Jenny back after a few minutes of thought, “Have Q-town’s mayor, town commissioners and sanitation engineers and attorney at the office when I get there,” I said.
As I rode over the bay bridge I counted the massive ships at the anchorage waiting to make the final leg to the Baltimore marine terminal to unload. There were ten today; a mix of huge container ships and freighters.
The realization that we were never going to win the war on terror hit home. There were too many ways to easily enter the US and only a few cared at all. The rest of the country was lost in trying to survive, sports or drugs. The best we could hope for was to minimize the damage and prevent the big one from happening.
When I walked into the office the girls met me at the elevator.
“I take you have plan,” Jenny said.
Edit by Alfmeister
Proof read by Bob W.