Still more willful ignorance– in this case, from the director of the National Counterterrorism Center.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. intelligence and law enforcement authorities are discovering new home-grown cells of Islamist radicals in the United States that draw inspiration and moral support from al Qaeda, officials said on Tuesday.
Scott Redd, director of the National Counterterrorism Center, said in a written statement to the Senate that the emergence of home-grown terrorist groups is posing “real challenges” for U.S. authorities despite law enforcement successes at disrupting potential attacks.
“We are grappling with a whole new set of questions: what forces give rise to this violent ideology in immigrant communities that may appear otherwise to be quite well assimilated? … What signs should we be looking for to try to draw early warning of potential problems?” the statement said.
And so, by insisting on al Qaeda as a first cause of the impulse to jihad (which they won’t acknowledge as “jihad” to begin with), they wage the “War on Terror” as if swinging blindfolded at a piÃ±ata.
In later oral testimony, Redd said home-grown cells were a new domestic phenomenon for which the FBI and law enforcement agencies had no “baseline” for measuring the scale of the problem.
Redd declined to discuss details with senators in public but cited recent arrests of terrorism suspects in California and Georgia.
“That’s three in a little over a year, and there are obviously other investigations ongoing,” Redd told the committee.
Sen. Joseph Biden of Delaware, the panel’s ranking Democrat, said the emergence of home-grown U.S. terror cells is widely recognized within the intelligence community.
“Everyone I’ve spoken to in the intelligence community says there are more cells now in the United States, there’s more activity in the United States,” Biden said.
Intelligence officials have long warned the international battle against al Qaeda had encouraged Islamist militants to operate in small groups like the cell that carried out bombings in London in 2005.