[link to www.foxnews.com]
“Usama bin Laden dethroned as top terrorist threat to the United States?
That’s the assessment of Michael Leiter, head of the National Counterterrorism Center, who testified Wednesday before the House Homeland Security Committee at a hearing on Islamic extremism.
The committee’s new chairman, Republican Rep. Peter King of New York, cut right to the chase, asking which Al Qaeda leader poses the greatest threat to U.S. national security.
“Would you say that (Anwar) al-Awlaki is at least as severe a threat today as Bin Laden?” King asked.
“I actually consider Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula with Al-Awlaki as a leader within that organization probably the most significant risk to the U.S. homeland,” Leiter responded.
Awlaki, a U.S.-born radical cleric, has been on the national security radar for nearly a year and is the first American on the CIA’s kill or capture list. Now believed to be hiding in Yemen, Awlaki is part of the new breed of digital jihadists who use the Internet to inspire their followers to launch lone-wolf or small-cell attacks that are nearly impossible for law enforcement to prevent.”