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- 1 afternoon-evening September 11, 2001: Suspicious Al-Marabh Associate Arrested with Airline Uniforms and Forged Passports
- 2 September 11, 2001: Planned Rice Speech on Threats Contains No Mention of al-Qaeda
- 3 September 11, 2001: Bush Administration Said to Have No Clear Foreign Policy
- 4 September 11, 2001: FAA’s ‘Heighted State of Alert’ Only Reported in Canadian Newspaper
- 5 Timeline links
afternoon-evening September 11, 2001: Suspicious Al-Marabh Associate Arrested with Airline Uniforms and Forged Passports
Nageeb Abdul Jabar Mohammed Al-Hadi is on an airplane from Frankfurt, Germany, to Chicago when the flight is diverted to Toronto, Canada, due to the shutdown of flights to the US in the immediate wake of the 9/11 attacks.
Customs officers search his suitcases and find two Lufthansa airline crew uniforms (he was a Lufthansa sales representative in Yemen) and a piece of torn paper with cryptic writing on it sewn into the pocket of a pair of pants. He is also carrying four Yemeni passports, each with a different passport number. Three bear his photograph and variations of his name, while a fourth has the name and photo of another person. He is married to a US woman living in Detroit. He is arrested and detained. Al-Hadi is connected through telephone records to Nabil al-Marabh. In May 2002, it will be reported that Canada has approved his deportation to the US, where he is wanted on several charges of passport forgery.It appears that in January 2003, he is convicted in the US on the forgery charges. 
September 11, 2001: Planned Rice Speech on Threats Contains No Mention of al-Qaeda
National Security Adviser Rice is scheduled to deliver a speech claiming to address “the threats and problems of today and the day after, not the world of yesterday.” The speech is never given due to the 9/11 attacks earlier in the day, but the text is later leaked to the media. The Washington Post calls the speech “telling insight into the administration’s thinking” because it promotes missile defense and contains no mention of al-Qaeda, bin Laden, or Islamic extremist groups. The only mention of terrorism is in the context of the danger of rogue nations such as Iraq. In fact, there are almost no public mentions of bin Laden or al-Qaeda by Bush or other top Bush administration officials before 9/11, and the focus instead is on missile defense. 
September 11, 2001: Bush Administration Said to Have No Clear Foreign Policy
(morning) An editorial in the Washington Post published hours before the 9/11 attacks reads,
“When it comes to foreign policy, we have a tongue-tied administration. After almost eight months in office, neither President Bush nor Secretary of State Colin Powell has made any comprehensive statement on foreign policy. It is hard to think of another administration that has done so little to explain what it wants to do in foreign policy.” 
Two months before Bush’s election, many key members of Bush’s future administration signed a Project for the New American Century report that advocates a very aggressive US foreign policy. One British MP[who?] will later call it a “blueprint for US world domination” [see 1]. Yet there has been little sign of the foreign policy goals advocated in this report in the eight months before 9/11.
September 11, 2001: FAA’s ‘Heighted State of Alert’ Only Reported in Canadian Newspaper
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On the morning of September 11, 2001, just hours before the 9/11 attacks begin, the Globe and Mail, reports a front page story entitled “Air-Travel Ban Keeps Rushdie Out of Canada.” The story notes that author Salman Rushdie was not allowed on an Air Canada flight into Canada on September 7, 2001, and he canceled a planned Canadian trip as a result.
The article notes that on September 6, the FAA “issued an emergency directive banning Mr. Rushdie from all flights in and out of the United States, reflecting a heightened state of alert”[see 2]. Rushdie is also having trouble flying inside the US because of the restrictions and one US flight he had recently scheduled had been canceled.
The article says the FAA will not explain why the directive about Rushdie had been issued. But the Daily Mail will later report that the CIA gave the FAA warning of a spectacular and imminent Muslim fundamentalist attack and the FAA incorrectly guessed this had to do with Rushdie traveling on a book tour [see 3]
Rushdie had been the subject of an Iranian fatwa until it was lifted in 1998. He was in Houston, Texas , for a book reading as part of a North American book tour and planned to fly to Minneapolis on 9/11.  This news report about the FAA’s heightened state of alert is only reported in the Globe and Mail before the 9/11 attacks begin. Articles about it appear in six news sources in the weeks after the attacks.