As the U.S. and Afghan forces chase the last remaining al-Qaeda leaders in the mountains of Pakistan, they seem to have forgotten to look behind them.
The U.S. has been all hands on deck trying to eliminate the ISIS camps and resurgent Taliban camps throughout Afghanistan, but now al-Qaeda camps are reappearing at a rate and size that would normally top the President’s daily terror briefing.
Just in October, commandos discovered one of the biggest Al-Qaeda camps ever discovered in Afghanistan which sprawled over 30 miles and included elaborate tunnels, fortifications and over 200 fighters.
One former head of the CIA Michael Morell, whom stepped down 2 years ago said:
“I do worry about the rebirth of AQ in Afghanistan because of what their target list will be — us. It is why we need to worry about the resurgence of the Taliban, because, just like before, the Taliban will give Al Qaeda a safe haven.”
Most concerning is that these large camps have been up for over a year and a half, undetected by any coalition aircraft. Worse of all, they are located along the Pakistani border in Kandahar Province.
From the New York Times:
WASHINGTON — Even as the Obama administration scrambles to confront the Islamic State and a resurgent Taliban, an old enemy seems to be reappearing in Afghanistan: Qaeda training camps are sprouting up there, forcing the Pentagon and American intelligence agencies to assess whether they could again become a breeding ground for attacks on the United States.
Most of the handful of camps are not as big as those that Osama bin Laden built before the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. But had they re-emerged several years ago, they would have rocketed to the top of potential threats presented to President Obama in his daily intelligence briefing. Now, they are just one of many — and perhaps, American officials say, not even the most urgent on the Pentagon’s list in Afghanistan.
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