Deep inside a New York Times profile of the accused Times Square bomber — “From Suburban Father to a Terrorism Suspect” – there is this:
George LaMonica, a 35-year-old computer consultant, said he bought his two-bedroom condominium in Norwalk, Conn., from Mr. Shahzad for $261,000 in May 2004. A few weeks after he moved in, Mr. LaMonica said, investigators from the national Joint Terrorism Task Force interviewed him, asking for details of the transaction and for information about Mr. Shahzad. It struck Mr. LaMonica as unusual, but he said detectives told him they were simply “checking everything out.
In recent terrorism cases, the Ft. Hood shooting and the attempted Christmas Day bombing, we learned that authorities knew about the perpetrators before the attacks took place. It seems reasonable to guess that, given Faisal Shahzad’s background, travel patterns, communications habits and associations, the authorities knew something about him, too. The next few days might tell us a lot.
P.S. — Some news organizations are reporting that U.S. authorities knew nothing — absolutely nothing — about Shahzad. The Washington Post, for example, reports that Shahzad “was allegedly able to train with terrorists in Pakistan, return to the United States to assemble a car bomb in Connecticut and park it in Times Square without anyone in the nation’s vast counterterrorism apparatus knowing anything about it.” We’ll see if that turns out to be the case.