New revelations about the National Security Agency’s ability to track phone calls in pre-9/11 America are raising the specter of a massive government cover-up. One that could have been used to hide intelligence failures, and fuel arguments for mass domestic spying.
In 2000, Khalid al-Mihdhar was living in San Diego. One year later, he would go on to be one of the five hijackers aboard American Airlines Flight 77, steered into the Pentagon on September 11. But in the months leading up to that horrifying day, al-Mihdhar made a number of phone calls to Yemen from his California apartment.