By Jim Kouri
In a disturbing report to federal, state and local law enforcement officers throughout the country on Friday, the Pentagon said preliminary tests have determined that a chemical weapon was used during ongoing combat in northern Iraq. During an intense battle between the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and Kurdish rebel forces, ISIS may very well have resorted to using chemical agents, according to Military Times on Friday.
It has already been proven that chlorine gas is being used by the Islamist marauders, but now Pentagon officials are saying there may be another deadly chemical being used by the ISIS terrorists. According to Brigadier General Kevin Killea during a Pentagon briefing late Friday afternoon, mortar shell fragments fired on the Kurds by ISIS tested positive for mustard gas. But Gen. Killea quickly cautioned reporters and others that a positive determination can’t be made before there is more testing completed.
“That [was a preliminary] field test which are not 100 percent accurate and not conclusive. What those results tell us is merely the presence of that chemical, it doesn’t tell us anything more than that,” said Killea.
U.S. senior officials said test results from another ISIS attack in Syria three weeks ago confirmed the jihadists used a mustard agent as a weapon, which is against international law. It is also something that can easily be brought into the United States by terrorists or their couriers across U.S. borders.
The mustard agent used in Syria by ISIS was more likely precursor chemicals, not the weaponized kind that are believed to be stored in Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s chemical arsenals. However, a number of experts in WMD (weapons of mass detruction) have long believed Assad’s army had been blamed for chemical weapons attacks that were actually perpetrated by ISIS.
The latest findings by U.S. officials suggests that the Sunni terrorist group may have mixed chemical weapons on its own. “U.S. intelligence communities and law enforcement analysts have been concerned that the ISIS, which controls a large part of Syrian and Iraqi territory, would find chemical weapons that were abandoned by fleeing Syrian troops or they may have their own experts working on creating WMD,” said former military intelligence officer and law enforcement detective Joseph Mandalheim.
What is most concerning to U.S. cops is the fact that with terrorists having access to WMD such as mustard and chlorine gases, ISIS may attempt to sneak some of it into the United States to be used by their homegrown followers. Reports by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) indicate that during their testing of border and seaport security, the Red Teams were successful in sneaking WMD into the U.S. through inadequately covered Canadian or Mexican borders.