Brussels attacks "accelerated" by Paris suspect's arrest?

Last Updated Mar 22, 2016 5:07 PM EDT

"What we feared has happened. We were hit by blind attacks," Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel said in the wake of the deadly terror attacks in Brussels on Tuesday.

But former Deputy Director of the CIA Michael Morell, now a senior CBS News security contributor, said the attacks were likely planned and could have been "accelerated" by the arrest on Friday of Salah Abdeslam, a prime suspect in the Nov. 13, 2015, Paris terror attacks.

"This particular attack, I believe, was something that they had in train... He (Abdeslam) was probably aware of this. They were probably concerned that he was going to talk to authorities and they moved this up," Morell said on "CBS This Morning."

CBS News senior national security analyst Juan Zarate also expressed shock that the perpetrators were able to pull off "another sophisticated, coordinated attack right under the noses of European authorities," despite the high level of alert in Belgium and France after after the Paris attacks.

The police and intelligence agenies "understood that there were these plots unfolding and networks that were planning attacks," Zarate told "CBS This Morning."

At least 31 people were killed and more than 200 wounded when explosions rocked the country's main airport terminal and a Brussels Metro station, places Morell described as the "perfect" targets for terrorists because hitting them, "creates the most fear."

French President Francois Hollande condemned the explosions, saying the "terrorists struck Brussels, but it was Europe that was targeted -- and all the world that is concerned."

"He's absolutely right," Zarate said, "and these are scenes that are reminiscent of a wartime environment unfortunately."

"This is a problem Europe-wide, a problem for counterterrorism and intelligence officials who have to share information to understand these networks that are operating cross-border rather fluidly," Zarate added.