Friday 17 March 2023

Hundred Of Thousands Of Americans At Risk From Resurgent ISIS-K In Afghanistan, Top General Warns

 Army Gen. Michael Kurilla, who leads U.S. Central Command, told the Senate Armed Services Committee that not only can the rejuvenated ISIS-K network in Afghanistan launch an attack against U.S. or Western interests abroad in under six months “with little or no warning,” but also hundreds of thousands of Americans abroad could be at risk.

Kurilla’s assessment came 19 months after the disastrous withdrawal from Afghanistan implemented by President Biden which left the Taliban in charge of running the country.

Asked how long it takes ISIS-K to generate the capability to conduct external operations, Kurilla responded, “It is my commander’s estimate that they can do an external operation against U.S. or Western interests abroad in under six months with little to no warning.”

“I think it is a higher probability overseas than it is in the homeland,” Kurilla stated.

“If you assess six months against Europe or Asia what would you assess would be the timeline against the homeland?” Arkansas GOP Senator Tom Cotton asked.

“I think it’s hard to put a timeline on that but I asses that they could in as little as six months with little to no warning,” Kurilla replied.

“When you add up all the troops you have in your area of responsibility and Americans who are there for business or tourism or pilgrimages on any given day, what are we talking about? Probably hundreds of thousands, right?” Cotton asked.

“At least,” Kurilla said bluntly.

“So hundreds of thousands within range of a terrorist attack, in your assessment in a mere six months from Afghanistan,” Cotton stated.

Kurilla simply nodded.

Kurilla also admitted that the quality of U.S. intelligence has plummeted since Biden’s withdrawal, as the “broad counters” of an attack can be ascertained but the U.S. no longer has the “granularity to see the full picture.”

“In Afghanistan, the disastrous withdrawal of U.S. troops nearly two years ago left a security vacuum that Taliban, al Qaeda, and ISIS have filled,” Mississippi GOP Senator Roger Wicker stated. “The Biden administration assured us that the Department of Defense would conduct counter-terrorism operations in Afghanistan even without a limited number of U.S. troops on the ground, but the United States has only conducted one strike in more than a year. The withdrawal from Afghanistan emboldened both ISIS and al Qaeda affiliates

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