The following is the full text of the intelligence briefing of 6 August 2001, prepared for President George W Bush, concerning the al-Qaeda threat to the United States.
It was declassified on 10 April.
Three sections were edited, the White House said, to "protect the names of foreign governments that provided information to CIA".
For the President Only
Bin Laden Determined To Strike in US
Clandestine, foreign government, and media reports indicate
(Osama) Bin Laden since 1997 has wanted to conduct terrorist attacks in the US. Bin Laden implied in US television interviews in 1997 and 1998 that his followers would follow the example of World
Trade Center bomber Ramzi Yousef and "bring the fighting to
After US missile strikes on his base in Afghanistan in
1998, Bin Laden told followers he wanted to retaliate in
Washington, according to a ...(edited)... service.
An Egyptian Islamic Jihad (EIJ) operative told a ...
(edited) ... service at the same time that Bin Laden
was planning to exploit the operative's access to the US to
mount a terrorist strike.
The millennium plotting in Canada in 1999 may have been
part of Bin Laden's first serious attempt to implement a
terrorist strike in the US.
Convicted plotter Ahmed Ressam has told the FBI that he conceived the idea to attack Los Angeles International Airport himself, but that Bin Laden lieutenant Abu Zubaydah encouraged him and helped facilitate the operation.
Ressam also said that in 1998 Abu Zubaydah was
planning his own US attack.
Ressam says Bin Laden was aware of the Los Angeles
Although Bin Laden has not succeeded, his attacks against
the US Embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998 demonstrate that
he prepares operations years in advance and is not deterred by
Bin Laden associates surveilled our embassies in
Nairobi and Dar-es-Salaam as early as 1993, and some members of
the Nairobi cell planning the bombings were arrested and
deported in 1997.
Al-Qaeda members - including some who are US citizens -
have resided in or travelled to the US for years, and the group
apparently maintains a support structure that could aid
Two al-Qaeda members found guilty in the conspiracy
to bomb our embassies in East Africa were US citizens, and a
senior EIJ member lived in California in the mid-1990s.
A clandestine source said in 1998 that a Bin Laden cell in
New York was recruiting Muslim-American youth for attacks.
We have not been able to corroborate some of the more
sensational threat reporting, such as that from a ... (edited)... service in 1998 saying that Bin Laden wanted to
hijack a US aircraft to gain the release of "Blind Sheikh"
Omar Abdel Rahman and other US-held extremists.
Nevertheless, FBI information since that time indicates
patterns of suspicious activity in this country consistent with
preparations for hijackings or other types of attacks,
including recent surveillance of federal buildings in New
The FBI is conducting approximately 70 full field
investigations throughout the US that it considers Bin
The CIA and the FBI are investigating a call to our
embassy in the United Arab Emirates in May saying that a group of Bin Laden supporters was in the US planning attacks with explosives.