You're probably as tired of the shopworn "connect the dots" cliche as I am.
But that doesn't prevent me from shamelessly expoiting it, anyway.
The Christmas terrorism attempt failed only because of the incompetence of the perpetrator. It was a successful attack, in the classic way acts of terror are successful: It sowed uncertainty.
We learned that no matter how much money and effort we expend on our self-protection, it will never be enough. It isn't that the terrorists tried something new and imaginative that completely hoodwinked us. No, they used the classic 9/11 modus operandi to show us it could still be done with impunity. Hell, just to drive home how flawed our system still is, we were warned in advance.
People are tribal. That's just the way we are. When you have a lot of people working in different agencies with different cultures--ostensibly toward the same goal--they're going to possessively withhold information from one another. At the very least, you won't get the kind of brainstorming cooperation that can often turn out a product greater than the sum of its parts.
The key is to convince these well-meaning, dedicated people that they have to buck their natural human tendencies, and that to succumb to them hurts the nation. Maybe this is a job for a hypnotist.