Sunday on CNN's State of the Union, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson had a tough time answering questions on the threat ISIS poses to the United States, specifically the number of operatives active in the country. But, he assured, have confidence because his department does a "pretty good" job at tracking these individuals.
Host Dana Bash played a clip of the assistant director to the FBI's Counterterrorism Division, Michael Steinbach, stating that there are individuals living in the U.S. right now who have "a desire to conduct an attack" and have been in communication with ISIS. Coming out of the clip, Bash asked what turned out to be an impossible question, "How many are we talking about?"
Treading lightly, Johnson danced around a solid answer deferring to speak about the new challenges since 9/11, the rise of terrorism in Europe, and pumping "If You See Something, Say Something." And in a feeble attempt to prove the Department of Homeland Security has a handle on tracking down this apparently unknown number of active terrorists on U.S. soil, Johnson said they have just arrested five people in an alleged plot.
Here is their conversation:
Bash: People who are in contact with ISIL, who are living in the U.S. right now -- How many are we talking about?
Johnson: Well, Dana, I would put it this way -- we've evolved to a new phase in the global terrorist threat in that 13 years ago, when we were attacked on 9/11, we had a relatively conventional command and control structure from core al Qaeda that would dispatch/deploy operatives to commit terrorist acts. The situation now is more decentralized, more diffuse, and frankly, more complex in that terrorist organizations such as ISIL or al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula use the Internet, use social media to communicate and to inspire acts of terrorism in individuals' home countries. And for that reason, we need to be particularly vigilant here at home, working with state and local law enforcement, working with the public through campaigns such as "If You See Something, Say Something." It is a more complex situation, very clearly.
Bash: Certainly complex, but if I may, can you shed more light on what we just heard? Do you have a handle on who the individuals are and how many there are in the United States who are in contact?
Johnson: The FBI and the Department of Homeland Security do a pretty good job of tracking the travel of individuals of suspicion, of investigating potential acts of terror, or material support of terrorism. Just this past Friday, there were arrests of five individuals who were providing material support, allegedly, to ISIL. So our law enforcement community does, what I believe is, a pretty good job of tracking these individuals and we work with them to track the travel of individuals of suspicion.
Bash: Can you give us a sense -- are we talking about five, 10, 100, 1,000? Give us the context of the people we're talking about?
Johnson: What I can say is this, the numbers that we see are larger in European countries, and that's one of the reasons why we're concerned about travel to and from Europe and making sure that we've got the appropriate security assurances from countries from which we do not require a visa. But here at home, we do a pretty good job of tracking these individuals and we have, in a number of instances, arrested people for material support, for attempting to travel to Syria, for example. Obviously there's an unknown factor, but I believe we have the systems in place to do a pretty good job of tracking these individuals through law enforcement, through travel, through our efforts to monitor what they're doing.
What a bunch of bull he handed out with this exchange. DHS is not doing anything because Obama told them to do nothing. They obey.
I am glad that they do something...or think they do?.....one has to wonder what the heck any of them get done for all the squabbling they all engage in and the varied belief systems we have these days...it is all counter -intuitive for this nation!!!! HOW in all that is sane can there be people here that actually want this nation to be communist and this outrageous diversity and harm that is being done to all we are????
Pretty bad that we cannot trust the government or anyone to speak of now days...that does not say anything good about America!
and we the people pay the price in that the NSA monitors us all, all of the time
And yet it would appear that you are completely oblivious to neuroweaponry - how is that?
This POS Obama appointee could not track his ass if it was on fire. More useless and complete blather from DHS....wonder what they are going to say when we defund them next week?!!!!
I bet Homeland Security (cough cough) would do a much better job if they stopped harassing Americans, and actually focused on dealing with terrorists and securing the border.
Lie, lie, and then comes the next 9/11.
Democrats wouldn't mind another 9/11 in this country. The people would come flocking to the government for protection. As far as Democrats are concerned, the death of a few thousand Americans is a small price to pay for them to consolidate their power over the other 300+ million.
YES, they really are THAT STUPID.
pretty good not good enough. how many terrorist attacks have there been since your planning mass murder organization been around. Maybe you should look at real terrorist. instead of Christians conservatives veterans
Wow what a statement!!! I guess we can say: The Terrorists "Did a Pretty Good Job" of destroying the twin towers and Killing over 3,000 innocent people and destroying countless numbers of families and friends!!!
"A Pretty Good Job" - - Well if this is the Obama standard - then it is appropriate to say that Obama, Holder, Johnson, Pelosi, Reid, Jarrett, Rice and the rest of the "Obama Administration" have done a Pretty Good Job.
To me "Pretty Good Job" means you FAILED. Maybe I didn't always produce every job assignment at 100%, BUT I "ALWAYS" gave 110% to EVERYTHING I ever did in the workplace!!!, I NEVER settled for having done "A PRETTY GOOD JOB"!!! We tax payers sure are wasting a lot of money on our politicians!!! WHY? Remember: It's a Republican Senate and House lol, lol, lol, lol........