Bush’s top counterterrorism advisers acknowledged as much on July 17 in releasing a summary of a National Intelligence Estimate that represented the consensus view of the U.S. intelligence community.
The report, entitled “The Terrorist Threat to the U.S. Homeland,” described a resurgent al-Qaeda that has regrouped in remote sections of Pakistan while exploiting Muslim anger over the war in Iraq to increase its operational strength internationally and to take aim at American targets, again.
“We assess that al-Qaeda will continue to enhance its capabilities to attack the [U.S.] homeland through greater cooperation with regional terrorist groups,” the NIE said. “Of note, we assess that al-Qaeda will probably seek to leverage the contacts and capabilities of al-Qaeda in Iraq [AQI], its most visible and capable affiliate and only one known to have expressed a desire to attack the [U.S.] homeland.
“In addition, we assess that its association with AQI helps al-Qaeda to energize the broader Sunni extremist community, raise resources, and to recruit and indoctrinate operatives, including for [U.S.] homeland attacks.”
In other words, Bush’s repeated warnings that the United States must fight Islamic extremists in Iraq so “we don’t have to fight them here” or so "they won't follow us home" turn out to be the opposite of the truth: because U.S. forces are occupying Iraq, al-Qaeda has more resources and more recruits determined to bring the war to the United States...
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