In a profile of FBI director Robert Mueller, facing a mandatory 10-year retirement, Time magazine asks if the FBI is up to the task 10 years after the 9/11 attacks. Time calls Mueller himself “careful to dodge the spotlight, so rigorously bland when caught onstage, that he could drink unrecognized at any bar in America.” 9/11 was the worst hour in the FBI’s 93-year history. Field offices in Phoenix and Minneapolis had important clues long before the attacks. Neither knew what the other knew, and no one put the pieces together. Critics called the FBI was irreparably broken, ill equipped to collect intelligence and disinclined to share it anyway.
Mueller doubled the agent force on national security and tripling the number of analysts. Time concludes, however, that “even a decade’s reform has not changed J. Edgar Hoover’s gangbusters into a 21st century counterterrorist force.” Mueller says it is good for the FBI to lend a hand to local police, but carjacking “is not one of the top priorities.” Mueller says he is still “trying to drive out [ ] the usual metric of arrests, indictments and convictions by numbers.” Former Deputy Attorney General James Comey is called Mueller’s “preferred successor.”