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CIA Director John Brennan has testified that his agency has determined that the Islamic terror army ISIS is sending its operatives into western nations to commit guerrilla-styled attacks to compensate for its loss of territory at home.
In prepared remarks reported by McClatchy that were delivered to the Senate Intelligence Committee, Director Brennan says ISIS has built a new arm to control terror attacks outside its own area of influence.
“ISIL has a large cadre of Western fighters who could potentially serve as operatives for attacks in the West,” Brennan said. Brennan went on to report ISIS is working to smuggle its operatives into western countries, likely disguised as “refugees.”
Brennan also warned that ISIS is continuing its outreach into the west to urge so-called “lone wolf” terrorists to act on their behalf. He added that last week’s attack in Orlando is a “heinous act of wanton violence” and an “assault on the values of openness and tolerance” of the U.S.
The CIA chief noted that several of these efforts have already gained a foothold in countries such as Egypt, Afghanistan, and Pakistan as well as throughout continental Africa.
Brennan warns that ISIS is still a “formidable adversary,” even though Western forces have made some headway against them.
“Unfortunately, despite all our progress against ISIL on the battlefield and in the financial realm, our efforts have not reduced the group’s terrorism capability and global reach,” Brennan said.
“In fact, as the pressure mounts on ISIL, we judge that it will intensify its global terror campaign to maintain its dominance of the global terrorism agenda.”
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