ISIS-K, China and domestic terror: Threats to US on display at House hearing

U.S.

WASHINGTON (NewsNation Now) — Are we safer now than we were on 9/11? That question was top of mind in the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday as some of the nation’s top security experts testified about the most serious threats facing the nation.

“My own concern is ISIS-K,” said Christine Abizaid, director of the National Counterterrorism Center. “Will it become more focused on the West, more focused on the homeland than it was previously?”

Twenty years after 9/11, there is concern the collapse of the Afghan government could foster a rebirth of terrorist networks such as ISIS.

But some experts, including FBI Director Chritopher Wray, view domestic terrorism as a more immediate threat.

“We have seen domestic extremism responsible for the most lethal activity in recent years,” Wray said in a House Committee on Homeland Security hearing Wednesday.

He also says much of the FBI’s work deals with cyberthreats to the homeland, and an ever-more aggressive China.

“Protecting our nation’s innovation, we’re opening up a new China counterintelligence investigation every 12 hours,” Wray said. “And every day we receive thousands of tips.”

Republicans grilled Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on the state of the southern border and the threat posed when border agents are overwhelmed.

“These gaps in the border are exploited to easily smuggle contraband, criminals or even potential terrorists to the United States,” said Rep. John Katko, R-N.Y.

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