Five ISIS Leaders Caught After Three Month Long Intelligence Operation

Posted: May 10, 2018 3:00 PM

President Trump announced Thursday morning five ISIS leaders have been captured.

The leaders were taken in Iraq after months of strategic planning by the U.S., including the CIA, Turkey and Iraqi forces. The New York Times has the scoop:

Five senior Islamic State officials have been captured, including a top aide to the group’s leader, in a complex cross-border sting carried out by Iraqi and American intelligence, two Iraqi officials said Wednesday.

The three-month operation, which tracked a group of senior Islamic State leaders who had been hiding in Syria and Turkey, represents a significant intelligence victory for the American-led coalition fighting the extremist group and underscores the strengthening relationship between Washington and Baghdad.

Two Iraqi intelligence officials said those captured included four Iraqis and one Syrian whose responsibilities included governing the Islamic State’s territory around Deir al-Zour, Syria, directing internal security and running the administrative body that oversees religious rulings.

It should be noted President Trump's CIA director nominee, Gina Haspel, is currently the acting director at the agency. 

Haspel testified in front of the Senate Intelligence Committee Wednesday and detailed her career hunting terrorists. 

"When a very tough, old school leader announced that I was his pick to be Chief of Station in a small but important frontier post, a few competitors complained to me directly 'why would they send you?' I owe that leader much for believing in me at a time when few women were given these opportunities," she said.

"While I could have done without the long nights, sleeping on the floor of my station, I was proud of the work we did there including the successful capture of two major terrorists, a counterproliferation operation that went our way, and the dismantlement of a local terrorist cell," she continued. "Altogether, I have served seven tours in the field — four as Chief of Station — including hardship assignments in distant posts and, more recently, in the capital  of a major US ally."