DALLAS (CBS 11 NEWS) – U.S. airstrikes continue to pound Islamic militants in Iraq to keep them from their campaign of killing.
On Monday, FBI Director James Comey sounded the alarm in Dallas about the militants known as ISIL, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. “This is a group that aspires to be the leader of the global jihad. At some point, to establish their cred as the leader of the global jihad, they’re coming for us.”
Comey was in North Texas helping the Dallas office of the FBI celebrate its 100th anniversary. But the Islamic militants in Iraq and in Syria tempered his sense of celebration.
Comey said Syria has become a safe-haven for terrorists.
The FBI is tracking more than 100 Americans who’ve traveled to Syria, many of them he calls home grown terrorists. “They can be in their basement in their pajamas convincing themselves they have to kill innocent Americans. This is a phenomenon that’s particularly worrisome.”
In the past four months, federal agents arrested and filed terrorism charges against 19-year-old Shannon Conley of Denver, and two Texans: Rahatul Khan and UT student Michael Todd Wolfe.
Comey compares Syria now to Afghanistan in the years leading up to the September 11th attacks.
“This is Afghanistan several orders of magnitude worse for this reason. Far more people, far easier to get there, and far easier to get back. Figuring out who’s going to place to go to a place to get to Syria is very hard for us.”
Comey is asking the public to call the FBI if they know of anyone traveling to Syria recently. He says the number of counter-terrorism investigations is increasing, and that they’re giving the Dallas office more resources to combat terrorism and other major crimes.
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