Terror alert down

But al Qaeda’s gonna nuke us all!

Except, um, probably not really. As Steve writes:

Under the thoroughly sensational and misleading headline (“CIA Says al-Qaeda Ready to Use Nukes”), there’s really nothing to it — that is, nothing we haven’t seen before. It’s just a recapitulation of old intelligence and old speculation, most of it culled from manuals and documents obtained in Afghanistan over the past couple of years.

But the political purpose of leaking it is clear enough. The people must have the frisson of imminent, unprecedented danger, and the Bushmen must have a fresh distraction from their many continuing failures in Iraq, not least the failure to find anything resembling WMDs or serious facilities for their construction. The rest of the world won’t buy it, but the folks at home will still believe anything.