Thornberry says there were signs of al Qaeda and ISIS cooperation in Syria

Thornberry says there were signs of al Qaeda and ISIS cooperation in Syria
© Greg Nash

The top GOP representative on the House Armed Services Committee said the location of the raid that resulted in the death of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi could indicate some cooperation between ISIS and al Qaeda.

Rep. Mac ThornberryWilliam (Mac) McClellan ThornberryOvernight Defense: Formal negotiations inch forward on defense bill with Confederate base name language | Senators look to block B UAE arms sales | Trump administration imposes Iran sanctions over human rights abuses Defense bill moves to formal negotiations with Confederate name fight looming Overnight Defense: Trump orders troop drawdown in Afghanistan and Iraq | Key Republicans call Trump plan a 'mistake' MORE (R-Texas) said on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday that some people expressed surprise that al-Baghdadi was found near the town of Barisha in Syria because al Qaeda was known to be present in that area.

He said it’s possible the two terrorist organizations worked together. 

“What happens in some places is terrorist organizations that you think are rivals can actually cooperate in certain situations,” he said.

“Is that what happened here or you suspect it?” host Jake TapperJacob (Jake) Paul TapperJake Tapper jokes he's retained Giuliani to look into fraud in 'Sexiest Man' election Brennan takes final shot at Trump: 'I leave his fate to our judicial system, his infamy to history, & his legacy to a trash heap' Biden transition adviser: Legal action for ascertainment of win 'isn't our preference' MORE asked Thornberry.

“In that area, there were signs of al Qaeda and ISIS cooperating in a way we have not seen before,” the Republican representative responded. 

Thornberry said he brought up that the area was known for being friendly to al Qaeda “to highlight the danger of terrorism” and caution that the U.S. is not done dealing with threats from these groups.

“We’re not done with this threat,” he said.

“This is a big deal,” he added referring to al-Baghdadi ‘s death. “But we’ve got to keep the pressure on.”

President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden adds to vote margin over Trump after Milwaukee County recount Krebs says allegations of foreign interference in 2020 election 'farcical'  Republicans ready to become deficit hawks again under a President Biden MORE confirmed Sunday the ISIS leader died after a U.S. raid pushed him to detonate a suicide vest.