Image via The Daily Signal
You will soon be hearing much more about the terrorist group, Khorasan.
Why? To borrow a phrase – you may not be interested in them – but they are plenty interested in you.
They were spoken about publicly for the first time last week when James Clapper, director of U.S. national intelligence, referred to them in a talk at an intelligence conference in Washington.
That public reference opened the way to briefings by other intelligence sources about the organization, which is led by a band of hardened jihadis from Afghanistan and Pakistan. The group’s primary focus is said to be attacks on American and other Western aircraft, which has catapulted them to the forefront of Western concern.
Khorasan has ties with the al Qaeda franchise in Yemen, which specializes in producing sophisticated devices intended to explode aboard aircraft, including explosive underwear and explosives in printer cartridges. All attempts to activate these devices have thus far failed.
The Free Beacon goes on to report that western intelligence has known about Khorasan at least since January. The reason the public was left in the dark was out of fear its members would go underground and vanish from the intelligence radar if they knew they were being surveilled.
While ISIS has captured international attention with its very public, bloodthirsty tactics, a terrorist group some American officials say is more intent on actually striking the United States is operating in the shadows, and on the margins of the national security conversation. Identified only this month as the Khorasan group, veteran Al Qaeda fighters now based in Syria, the cell is “potentially yet another threat to the homeland, yes,” said director of national intelligence James Clapper last week, adding that “in terms of threat to the homeland, Khorasan may pose as much of a danger as the Islamic State.” Or, based on last night’s surprise bombings, an even greater threat.
U.S. air strikes in Syria overnight targeted ISIS militants in an extensive operation that included assistance from Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan, and Qatar, CNN reported, a truly impressive collection of Middle Eastern allies. But relatively quietly, all by itself, the U.S. was also bombing Khorasan targets in the region.
The threat from the Khorasan group was “imminent,” multiple intelligence sources have told a variety of news outlets. According to CNN, the U.S. “had very good information” about a potential attack — Khorasan was near the “end of their planning.” By striking last night, the U.S. “hoped to surprise the group by mixing strikes against it with strikes against ISIS targets.”
Via Fox News, the Pentagon characterized last night’s air strikes on ISIS targets in Syria as “very successful” and “backed by five Sunni Arab nations.” The degree to which they contributed has been left unreported. An AP reporter did tweet that the support from five Arab nations “distinguished” Obama’s
war, kinetic military action, counter-terrorism effort from Bush’s icky Iraq war effort. He then deleted his tweet in shame and embarrassment after he was called out for his sycophantic dishonesty.
The U.S. military targeted the Khorasan Group “without assistance” in northwest Syria.
The Pentagon said the latter strikes in and around Aleppo were intended to disrupt the plotting of an “imminent” attack on the U.S. homeland by Khorasan.
The Daily Signal: Q&A: Meet Khorasan, the Terrorist Group That Might Be Scarier Than ISIS:
The Daily Signal: What exactly is the Khorasan group and what is their aim?
Phillips: The Khorasan group is a cell of veteran terrorists belonging to the al-Qaeda core group — the high command of the al-Qaeda network that relocated to Pakistan after the 2001 defeat of the Taliban regime in Afghanistan.
Osama bin Laden’s successor, Ayman al-Zawahiri, reportedly dispatched the Khorasan group to Syria to link up with al-Qaeda’s official franchise in Syria, Jabhat al-Nusra — which means “the Victory Front.”
Obama was right – The US “decimated” “core al Qaeda” (in Afganistan.) But they regrouped in Pakistan and Syria and became the more lethal and feral Khorasan group.