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NATION IN BRIEF: Obama says systemic failure resulted in plot

Obama says systemic failure resulted in plot

HONOLULU President Barack Obama said Tuesday that ''a systemic failure'' allowed the attempted Christmas Day attack on a Detroit-bound flight from Amsterdam. He called it ''totally unacceptable.''

The president said he wants preliminary results by Thursday from two investigations he has ordered to examine the many lapses that occurred. It will take weeks for a more comprehensive investigation into what allowed a 23-year-old Nigerian carrying explosives onto the flight despite the fact the suspect had possible ties to al-Qaida, Obama said.

''It's essential we diagnose the problems quickly,'' he said, interrupting his vacation for a second consecutive day to address the incident, with more anger this time directed at the flaws in the U.S. system.

Bombing survivor dies in Fla. home

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- U.S. Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Johann Gokool lost his left foot when a bomb ripped a hole in the side of the USS Cole nearly a decade ago, but the injury was nothing compared with the mental torment that ravaged him almost daily.

He returned home to Florida suffering severe post-traumatic stress disorder and frequent panic attacks so violent he would launch into seizures and even fractured his own wrist several times as he flailed, sister Natala Gokool said Tuesday.

One of the brothers he lived with found him dead in their home last Wednesday, just a week after his 31st birthday, Natala Gokool said. His cause of death was unknown, though she said foul play was not suspected. The family believes the seizures just became too much for his body to handle.

Hacker pleads guilty in Mass. to fraud case

BOSTON -- A computer hacker who helped orchestrate one of the largest credit card thefts in U.S. history has pleaded guilty to conspiracy and wire fraud in the last of three cases brought by federal prosecutors.

Prosecutors say Albert Gonzalez, of Miami, invaded the computer systems of several major retailers and stole tens of millions of credit and debit card numbers.

Gonzalez entered a guilty plea in U.S. District Court in Boston on Tuesday in a case involving unauthorized access to computers of Maine-based Hannaford supermarkets and other retailers.