By Andrea Salazar
David Petraeus, testifying for the first time as CIA director, told the House and Senate select committees on intelligence Tuesday that the U.S. is safer now than it was 10 years ago, but a slate of threats still remain.
During the hearing, Petraeus pointed out the threats posed by al Qaeda affiliates such as al Qaeda in the Lands of Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) and al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) while acknowledging that the al Qaeda core has weakened and “is struggling to find qualified replacements.”
Petraeus, a former four-star General who recently retired from the Army, credited “interagency collaboration and cooperation” with Osama bin Laden’s death, urging for continued partnership moving forward.
James Clapper, Director of National Intelligence, however, warned against overconfidence.
“It would be an error to conclude that we have reason to gloat, reason to soften our focus, or reason to reduce our concerns,” he said.
Instead, intelligence agencies will continue to use domestic surveillance, especially on the internet, while “taking extraordinary lengths…to ensure there are not violations of Americans’ civil liberties,” Clapper said.
Originally for Talk Radio News Service.
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