In a chilling admission that the world’s most dangerous terrorists now control some of the world’s most dangerous weapons, CIA Director John Brennan went on the record this week to warn that the leaders of the Islamic State are actively engaged in producing chemical weapons and using them on the battlefield.
Brennan told CBS News that the use of WMD by the terror state is limited for now. But he said ISIS appears to be trying to figure out how to use poison gas on a much wider scale.
It is, CBS reports, “a threat that keeps him up at night.”
This is not the first time we’ve seen open source news reports about ISIS’ chemical weapons capabilities (see here, here and here, as examples.) But Brennan is the highest-ranking U.S. intelligence official to confirm the Islamic State’s WMD capabilities.
The determination ISIS has to develop and deploy weapons that can kill on a mass scale is consistent with the ISIS’s apocalyptic beliefs and objectives, as I’ve been warning for some time. It’s also the heart of the plot lines in both of my most recent novels, The Third Target and The First Hostage in which a New York Times reporter discovers that ISIS has captured a cache of chemical weapons in Syria and is planning a genocidal attack soon to advance their End Times beliefs and hasten the coming of the Mahdi and a global Caliphate.
Nothing in the CBS report suggest Brennan is focused on the apocalyptic views of ISIS leaders. Perhaps the full interview will shed more light on the CIA’s assessment of Apocalyptic Islam and how it’s driving the actions of the Islamic State. That would be a positive development, though I can’t say I’m expecting as much. Thus far, the Obama administration has refused to discuss the intentions, theology and/or eschatology of ISIS. I maintain, however, that it is difficult to defeat an enemy one doesn’t fully understand or define.
Here’s a video clip from Brennan’s interview did with Scott Pelley of CBS News. The full interview is scheduled to air on Sunday night on “60 Minutes.”
Here, too, are excerpts from a Newsweek article:
- The Islamic State militant group (ISIS) has the capability to continue making small quantities of chlorine and mustard gas, according to CIA Director John Brennan.
- The U.S.’s intelligence chief is due to appear in an interview on CBS News’s 60 Minutes program on Sunday but the channel released snippets from the interview late Thursday. In the interview, he said that ISIS has already used chemical weapons on the battlefield a number of times.
- “We have a number of instances where ISIL has used chemical munitions on the battlefield,” he said, using an alternate acronym for the militant group.
- Brennan said that despite the setbacks the group has faced because of the U.S.-led coalition campaign, it has retained the ability to develop deadly munitions.
- “There are reports that ISIS has access to chemical precursors and munitions that they can use,” he said.
- He also warned that the radical Islamist group may attempt to sell on the weapons that they develop into Western countries.
- “I think there’s always the potential for that. This is why it’s so important to cut off the various transportation routes and smuggling routes that they have used,” he said….
- “U.S. intelligence is actively involved in being a part of the efforts to destroy ISIL and to get as much insight into what they have on the ground inside of Syria and Iraq,” he continued.
- U.S. Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said this week that ISIS’s development of chemical weapons was the first instance of an extremist group doing so since Japan’s Aum Supreme Truth cult used sarin gas in a rush-hour attack on the Tokyo subway in 1995.
- Order The First Hostage today — a new political thriller (four weeks on the Publishers Weekly best-seller list) about ISIS plotting a chemical weapons attack against Israel, Jordan and the United States — it’s now available in hardcover, e-book and audio formats.
- FACT SHEET: The Iranian leadership’s Apocalyptic Beliefs
- FACT SHEET: The Islamic State’s Apocalyptic Beliefs
- What the next US president will need to know about Iran and Islamic State. (my column in The Jerusalem Post)
- What’s the difference between Apocalyptic Islamic eschatology & Biblical eschatology? And why does it matter? (Video & sermon notes)
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- Order THE THIRD TARGET today , the first in this new series — now out in paperback — the New York Times best-selling novel about ISIS capturing chemical weapons in Syria and plotting genocidal attacks.
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