January 8, 1999 |
The two U.S. embassies in Africa that were shattered by terrorist bombs in August were vulnerable to attack because of decades of inattention to security, a senior administration official said Thursday, summarizing the findings of an official review board. The board said many U.S. diplomatic missions around the world have similar deficiencies and are tempting targets for terrorists.
January 1, 1999 |
The U.S. ambassador to Israel on Thursday ordered the embassy in Tel Aviv closed temporarily after receiving a "direct, credible" threat against the facility, a spokesman said. Embassy spokesman Larry Schwartz would not elaborate on specifics of the threat but said the closure was in line with other actions by the U.S. government in recent weeks to protect diplomatic missions amid "heightened regional tensions," including the latest U.S. military confrontation with Iraq. Ambassador Edward S.
September 1, 1998 |
U.S. embassies in the West African countries of Ghana and Togo were closed Monday because of security threats, the State Department said. The embassy in Ghana will be closed at least through Wednesday, according to an announcement released here and in the Ghanaian capital of Accra. In Togo, the embassy was to be closed Monday and "possibly additional days," a separate announcement said. Americans in the two countries were urged to avoid all U.S. facilities.
August 12, 1998 |
Because safety concerns ruled out their usual long walks, Myles and Barbara Frechette played tennis for exercise while he was U.S. ambassador to Colombia. While they played, armed men guarded the perimeter of the tennis court, their high-powered rifles trained on the high-rise buildings around the embassy residence, fearing sniper fire. Even exercise can be dangerous for U.S. diplomats assigned to embassies considered at high risk for terrorism.
August 8, 1998 |
The U.S. government has spent more than $1 billion to turn about 20 of its embassies around the world into state-of-the-art anti-terrorist fortresses, designed to withstand mob violence and car bombs. The buildings in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam are not among them. State Department officials said that, until Friday's deadly bombings in Kenya and Tanzania, neither country was on the department's list of high-danger posts.
November 14, 1995 |
The U.S. Embassy in Cairo, the largest American diplomatic structure in the world, dominates this dusty city's horizon. Two stone towers cover a full block, dwarfing the surrounding villas, university campus and government offices. They seem to symbolize American might. But the embassy, secured far behind an 8-foot-high concrete wall on streets where parking is banned and heavily armed police patrol, also proclaims American vulnerability.