C.I.A. warns congress of Islamic State global reach

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Following the terrorist attack last June 12th in Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, the C.I.A. Director John Brennan warns congress of further attacks from the Islamic State (IS).

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Reporting before the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Brennan spoke about how IS continues to develop its network despite the heavy losses it is sustaining in the battlefield. It may seem that they are losing the war on one end, yet grows its horns on the other.

Brennan paints a grim picture that shows the increasing difficulties of fighting against a seemingly amorphous enemy. It is not yet clear which strategy will be most effective in containing its reach.

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U.S. backed forces have advanced and intensified their attacks in Iraq and Syria that have led the coalition to regain significant territory from the terror group. They have curbed the influx of foreign fighters, too, and cut down financial channels that fuel the organization. But IS has found new ways to branch out globally, as reported by NY Daily News.

The CIA has cited major concerns about how Libya has become a new stronghold, which it considers “Probably the most developed and most dangerous.” Geographically, it is more of a threat because of its close proximity to Europe. Apart from this, other countries like Nigeria, Egypt, Afghanistan and Pakistan host terror cells that may be quantified by tens of thousands of IS fighters.

During the shooting in Orlando that left 49 victims dead, the perpetrator Omar Mateen called up 911 to pledge allegiance to IS. He was later on acknowledged by the terror organization, which lauded him for his efforts. The CIA warned of similar instances in the future, as “lone wolf” attackers could be taken advantage of, which could pose a real challenge for the intelligence community.

The CIA director also calls for stronger measures against immigration and warned how the Islamic State may sneak in terrorists into the country.


Photo courtesy: Day Donaldson/Flickr.com

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