PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Discussing his book, The Great War of Our Time: The CIA’s Fight Against Terrorism – from Al-Qaeda to ISIS, former CIA Director Michael Morrell warned that the U.S. is still under a severe threat of another terrorist attack.
Morrell told Rich Zeoli on Talk Radio 1210 terrorists are constantly plotting and planning their next strike against American civilians.
“Today, there are organizations like Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula [and] Al-Qaeda in Yemen that have the ability to bring down an airliner. They have very sophisticated operatives. They have very sophisticated explosives. The last three attempted attacks against the United States were by Al-Qaeda in Yemen, so they have that capability. Then we have to worry about ISIS, which has the capability to radicalize young men and young women to conduct the kind of attacks we saw last week in Texas. Then over time, if we don’t deal with these groups, if we don’t take the fight to them, if we don’t keep the pressure on them, then over time, if they have safe havens, just like Al-Qaeda had safe havens before 9/11, these groups will be able, at some point, to conduct 9/11 style attacks against us here in the homeland.”
He stated he also wanted to write a book to clear up what he sees as falsehoods of the CIA being presented in the media.
“There are a bunch of myths out there about us. One myth is the James Bond myth that we get everything right, we discover every secret, we stop every plot. That’s not true. Another myth is that everything we touch gets screwed up, falls apart, we get it wrong. That’s the Maxwell Smart myth. And then there’s the Jason Bourne myth, which we’re a rogue organization and we’re acting without the oversight of the White House and Congress. That myth is wrong. The reality is that these are incredibly dedicated men and women who are working really hard to protect the country.”
Morrell also responded to claims by Pulitzer Prize winning journalist Seymour Hersh who published an article this week claiming the narrative surrounding the killing of Osama bin Laden is a lie concocted to cover up a secret, coordinated hit organized by members of the U.S. and Pakistani governments.
“What Seymour Hersh said is total fiction. It’s total rubbish. I was in every meeting with regard to this issue at the CIA, every meeting with regard to this issue at the White House. It wasn’t a Pakistani official who we paid $25 million to who told us he was there. It was us following the courier from Peshawar to Abbottobad and then studying the house for months to make the conclusion that bin Laden was there. I was in the situation room when the President of the United States decided not to tell the Pakistanis that he was there and decided not to tell the Pakistanis we we’re going to conduct an operation. The President sent me to Pakistan to smooth over the relationship with Pakistanis after the raid because they were so furious at not knowing and not having us tell them. I don’t know where Seymour Hersh got this from, but his sources are ones that he should never, ever want to talk to again.”