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Intel Chiefs Tell Congress al-Qaida Not Done

James Clapper

The top two U.S. intelligence chiefs told a joint Congressional intelligence committee hearing Tuesday al-Qaida is weaker 10 years since the Sept. 11 attacks, but is still a threat and that domestic terrorists may be inspired by al-Qaida.

Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and CIA Director David Petraeus both testified before the panel in the first joint public intelligence hearing since 2001.

Clapper said the intelligence community individuals can, on the Internet, find English-language guidance and propaganda from al-Qaida, potentially leading them to plan attacks themselves.

“Such individuals, who may independently plan attacks with no guidance from associates in the U.S. or overseas, are difficult to detect and disrupt, and could carry out attacks with little or no warning,” Clapper said in written remarks.

Petreaus said the deaths of Osama bin Laden and other al-Qaida leaders have left the network more vulnerable, but that does not mean the country can let its guard down.

“Even in decline, with its core leadership having sustained significant losses, al-Qa‘ida and its affiliates still pose a very real threat that will require our energy, focus, creativity, and dedication for quite a while,” Petreaus said in written remarks.

Click here to watch the full hearing.

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