Mentre l’attenzione generale è focalizzata sull’ISIS un’altra minaccia appare all’orizzonte. Dal Wall Street Journal:
[…] Islamic State extremists, who have seized control of territory and towns across Iraq and Syria, represent a serious danger to U.S. and Western interests, mainly in the region, said the officials. But so do groups more tightly affiliated with the Pakistan-based leadership of al Qaeda.
Two such groups are the Nusra Front, al Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria, and a cell of al Qaeda leaders now in Syria that works closely with Nusra Front known as Khorasan.
U.S. officials say Khorasan is a growing hazard, particularly to the U.S., because its members are focused on violence toward the West and have been eyeing attacks on American airliners.
On Thursday, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper said Khorasan may pose as much of a danger as Islamic State “in terms of threat to the homeland.” It was the first time a U.S. official has acknowledged the group’s existence.
The groups have shown an affinity for bomb plots. Officials say they have grown alarmed that terrorists could attempt some attacks soon, such as a number targeting European countries from operatives based in Syria and Turkey.
The plots emanating from Syria likely have been under development for months, but the groups are vying for prominence with Islamic State, which has catapulted to the top of the U.S. target list in the region, the current and former officials said.
In Australia on Thursday, police carried out early morning raids in Sydney and another major city aimed at disrupting what they said were plans by local Islamic State supporters to behead members of the public. That plot represents a new nightmare scenario for U.S. officials, in which the brutal tactics of Islamic State militants are adopted more broadly by sympathetic extremists.
Officials wouldn’t describe in any detail the nature, location or timing of the plots. Together, Nusra Front and Khorasan are suspected to have multiple plots in the works targeting countries in Europe as well as the U.S.
Al Qaeda operatives may feel that they will have more breathing space as U.S.-led military strikes focus on Islamic State militants.
As the U.S.-led offensive against Islamic State ramps up, threats from other groups are likely to fester and perhaps escalate, and the U.S. may come under pressure to intervene more deeply in Syria and enlarge the campaign to cover more militants, the current and former officials say. […]