Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, Michael E. Leiter, director of the National Counter terrorism Center

Congress grills homeland security, intelligence officials

By Jim Kouri
Thursday, February 10, 2011

In an effort to gain insight on the strength and volatility of the Islamic terrorist group al-Qaeda, the U.S. House of Representatives’ Homeland Security Committee grilled members of President Barack Obama’s so-called national security team on Wednesday.

The numerous attacks against al Qaeda and its affiliated terrorist organizations—including the killing or capturing of top commanders—for more than a decade may have taken their toll on the terrorists, but the organization continues to be a serious threat to the United States, a top administration official told the panel of lawmakers yesterday.
“In addition to the core al-Qaeda group, which still represents a threat to the United States, despite its diminished capabilities, we now face threats from a number of al-Qaeda associates that share its violent extremist ideology,