...In testimony that has fueled controversy on Capitol Hill, Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair, National Counterterrorism Center Director Michael Leiter, and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano were all asked the same question during an appearance before the Senate homeland-security committee by Sen. Susan Collins, the panel’s ranking Republican: “Were you consulted regarding the decision to file criminal charges against [suspect Umar Farouk] Abdulmutallab in civilian court?”
Leiter and Napolitano gave the same answer. “I was not.” Blair also said, “I was not consulted,”
A key event was a 5 p.m. secure videoconference call on Christmas Day that included Leiter, who reports to Blair, and presided over by John Brennan, President Obama’s chief counterterrorism adviser. Also on the call was Jane Lute, the deputy secretary of homeland security and Napolitano’s No. 2.
During that conference call, a Justice Department lawyer briefed the group about the questioning of Abdulmutallab and the plans to file a criminal complaint against him the next day, Dec. 26.
Whiskey Tango Foxtrot?