“I’m not going to talk to you about intelligence,” he said at a news conference after his testimony, adding that “many [countries] are saying they see planning happening” for a terrorist attack. Congressional researchers and think tank analysts estimate that up to 1,500 of the foreign fighters who had traveled to Syria have returned to their Western home nations.
Counterterrorism experts agree that wars in the Middle East and north Africa have increased the flow of weapons, and possibly terrorists disguised as refugees, into Europe — but stress that the overwhelming majority of terror suspects and perpetrators have been home-grown radicals and sympathizers. There is “a huge reservoir of sympathizers who all have western or European passports and who were born or raised there,” Reinoud Leenders, a professor at the Department of War Studies at King’s College London, told the Los Angeles Times.
United States/Da’esh – U.S. Special Forces operating in Iraq captured the head ISIS chemical weapons unit. Sleiman Daud al-Afari, who worked for Saddam Hussenin’s now-disbanded Military Industrialization Authority where he specialized in chemical and biological weapons, was captured during a raid near the northern Iraqi town of Tal Afar last month, America Homeland Security briefed on the 10 Mar 16. The Daily Beast reports that U.S. officials last week said that an important ISIS military leader had been captured, but did not offer any details except to say he was being interrogated. Two Iraqi officials, who spoke on a condition of anonymity, said Afari is about 50 years old and heads ISIS’s recently established branch for the research and development of chemical weapons. The New York Times reports that Afari is being held under American control at a detention facility in Erbil, Iraq. He told U.S. officials that ISIS had weaponized mustard gas into powdered form and loaded it into artillery shells. U.S. defence officials who studied Afari’s statements said it appears that the mustard gas was not concentrated enough to kill anyone, but it could maim people. The Pentagon said that when Afari’s interrogation is over, he will be handed over to the Iraqi and Kurdish authorities. The capture of Afari, and the killing on 4 March of Abu Omar al-Shishani (“Senior ISIS leader Abu Omar al-Shishani killed in U.S. strike,” HSNW, 9 March 2016), are examples of a more aggressive U.S. approach to the war against ISIS (see “Ash Carter unveils a broader, more robust campaign to defeat ISIS,” HSNW, 14 January 2016). Iraqi officials and a Western security official in Baghdad told the Times that the U.S.-led coalition began targeting ISIS’s chemical weapons infrastructure with airstrikes and special operations raids over the past two months. The airstrikes have destroyed laboratories and equipment. Intelligence sources say that more raids by Special Forces, aiming to capture or kill ISIS chemical weapons experts, will be carried out. American and Iraqi officials say that there are many indications that ISIS is working hard to develop chemical weapons. Analysts say that the Islamist group has set up a special unit for chemical weapons research. The unit is manned by Iraqi scientists from the Saddam-era weapons program, but also employs foreign experts. In February, U.S. intelligence officials confirmed that ISIS managed to produce and deploy chemical agents. Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, told lawmakers that “sulphur mustard” had been used in an alleged ISIS attack in Syria and there are “numerous allegations” of ISIS’s use of chemical weapons in both Syria and Iraq, mostly in attacks on Kurdish forces.
United States/Da’esh – An English-speaking ISIS jihadi has warned America they will be attacked 'very soon' and 'by Allah's permission do to your country what we did to Paris' on the 9 Mar 16. In a chilling new ISIS video, he warns the US and President Barack Obama that the terror group will 'kill, slaughter and burn your people'. The jihadi tells America it can expect an atrocity similar to the massacre in Paris in Nov 15 in which 130 people were murdered in a wave of shootings and suicide bomb attacks. The narrator speaks English as he delivers his disturbing threat - but it is not known whether he is British. Footage begins with the title of the video: 'A message to America From The Islamic Caliphate Supporters.' The man says: 'Paris isn’t far from you - we will by Allah’s permission do to your country what we did to Paris. We will kill, slaughter and burn your people. 'Inshallah (God willing), we will attack you very soon with anything we lay our hands on.' Against a backdrop of footage from conflicts in the Middle East and harrowing scenes from the Paris attack, the narrator says: 'You dogs of Rome, Kerry and Obama, haven't you learned your lesson yet? 'Fighting the Islamic caliphate state is making you lose lots of wealth and even losing the lives of your army as well as your people.' He also makes reference to cyber attacks on the terror group and attempts to shut down their online operation. 'No matter how many times you delete our accounts or chase our places and no matter how you fight us, we are still here and we will support the Islamic caliphate state.' According to a British newspaper the video cuts to older footage of Jihadi John -killed in a US drone strike last year - wearing a balaclava and standing over his prisoners. I n January ISIS threatened an attack on Britain so horrific it will 'turn children's hair white'. The terror group warned the UK will suffer 'the lion's share' of the slaughter it intends to wield in Europe, according to its Arabic language newspaper, al-Naba.