The U.S. intelligence community believes the terrorist group known as ISIS is still a threat, despite President Donald Trump’s earlier claims that American troops have “defeated ISIS.”
“ISIS still commands thousands of fighters in Iraq and Syria, and it maintains eight branches, more than a dozen networks, and thousands of dispersed supporters around the world, despite significant leadership and territorial losses,” reads the Worldwide Threat Assessment, released by Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats on Tuesday.
“ISIS very likely will continue to pursue external attacks from Iraq and Syria against regional and Western
adversaries, including the United States,” the report continues.
The sudden move rattled Trump’s top advisers and spurred the resignation of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. Since then, National Security Adviser John Bolton has said the U.S. will only withdrawal troops after ISIS is defeated and the safety of U.S.-allied Kurdish fighters is secured.