Senior Obama administration officials warn that some Americans who traveled to the Middle East to join the Islamic State and other al-Qaeda-linked terrorists organizations have already returned to the United States.
In Monday's briefing on the administration's efforts to combat the trend of foreign radicals traveling to Iraq and Syria to train and join jihadist efforts, an unnamed administration official told reporters that an estimated 100 Americans have left the U.S. to join various terror groups like ISIS, also called ISIL or the Islamic State, and the al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Nursa Front in Iraq and Syria. A second official said those numbers include those that have returned to the homeland.
"It includes those who've gone, those who've tried to go, some who've come back and are under active — the FBI is looking at them," the official said. "These are FBI matters, I refer you to them on specifics."
Although vague, the official's statement provides the first U.S. government confirmation that radicals who left to train with terrorist organizations in Iraq and Syria will ultimately return to the homeland.