Rogers: Different Groups in Africa Coming Together Under ‘Al Qaeda’ Banner


Rep. Mike Rogers (R., Mich.) discussed the continued rise of radical Islamist groups in Africa Wednesday evening on CNN:

ERIN BURNETT: Republican Congressman Mike Rogers of Michigan is the Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee. He was a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army, also served as an FBI special agent and he is out front. Good to see you again.

MIKE ROGERS: Good to see you.

BURNETT: You said the kidnapping of Americans and other westerners raises the stakes in a very volatile region. Have you been briefed yet on this situation? What can you tell us?

ROGERS: The number of hostages has been moving a little bit. It will take a little bit of time before we get exact clarity on the exact number. But I will tell you what is happening, and I don’t believe that they came from Mali, either. The kidnappers themselves — the terrorists themselves — have said they came from Mali to pull this off. It shows you, I think, just volatility of the whole region, so from Tunisia to Libya, to Algeria, down into Mali and other places, even into western and southern Africa, you have seen weapon movement and people movement and a collection of different groups that have come together under the Al Qaeda banner. It is really, really dangerous. And we knew that they had looked at Western targets before. This was something that probably had some seeds of planning prior to. They used this as an opportunity to engage and to use it as a PR tool for what you see happening now.