"WASHINGTON, Feb. 9 - In the months before the Sept. 11 attacks, federal aviation officials reviewed dozens of intelligence reports that warned about Osama bin Laden and Al Qaeda, some of which specifically discussed airline hijackings and suicide operations, according to a previously undisclosed report from the 9/11 commission."
Here's the part that got me:
"The report discloses that the Federal Aviation Administration, despite being focused on risks of hijackings overseas, warned airports in the spring of 2001 that if 'the intent of the hijacker is not to exchange hostages for prisoners, but to commit suicide in a spectacular explosion, a domestic hijacking would probably be preferable.'
"Among other things, the report says that leaders of the F.A.A. received 52 intelligence reports from their security branch that mentioned Mr. Bin Laden or Al Qaeda from April to Sept. 10, 2001. That represented half of all the intelligence summaries in that time."
And parts of the report have still not been released:
"The classified version of the commission report quotes extensively from circulars prepared by the F.A.A. about the threat of terrorism, but many of those references have been blacked out in the declassified version, officials said.
Several former commissioners and staff members said they were upset and disappointed by the administration's refusal to release the full report publicly.
"Our intention was to make as much information available to the public as soon as possible," said Richard Ben-Veniste, a former Sept. 11 commission member."