House Homeland Security Chairman Michael McCaulMichael Thomas McCaulMcCaul says US withdrawal from Afghanistan has emboldened Russia on Ukraine Sunday shows - Voting rights legislation dominates Texas Republican: FBI probe into synagogue hostage taker spreads to London, Tel Aviv MORE (R-Texas) on Sunday said national security threats from Yemen would remain a mystery after the U.S. evacuated its personnel there.
“Yemen is one of the most dangerous spots in the world,” he told ABC’s Martha Raddatz on “This Week.” “And now, because we are withdrawing completely, we will have no intelligence footprint or capabilities to monitor what AQAP and ISIS and the Shia militants are – are doing in the region.”
The U.S. on Sunday evacuated the last of its government officials in Yemen over eroding safety there.
McCaul said their absence would allow terrorist organizations like al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) and the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) more room to plot future attacks.
“And without – you know, good intelligence stops plots against the homeland,” he continued. “And so I think these developments in Yemen greatly disturb me, because of the – their potential to attack the United States.”
McCaul added that intelligence from Yemen could impact America’s fight against ISIS elsewhere. Information the U.S. loses, he argued, could leave it blind in hotspots like Iraq and Syria.
“We have to get more aggressive in taking out ISIS where they exist and the head of the snake is in Iraq and Syria,” he said.
McCaul said ISIS already endangered Americans at home. He cited Saturday’s leak of U.S. military members’ personal information by ISIS supporters online as proof the group’s ill intent here.
“And I think, unfortunately, it would not be so hard to pull off,” McCaul said of a domestic attack inspired by the leak.