Al-Qaida likely to attempt attack in 3 to 6 months

At 2/02/10 hearing top intelligence officials described it as "certain" that al-Qaeda or its allies will try to attack the United States in the next six months.

The director of national intelligence Dennis Blair was asked to assess the possibility of an attempted attack in the United States in the next three to six months.

He replied, “The priority is certain, I would say” — a response that was reaffirmed by the top officials of the C.I.A. and the F.B.I.   Blair and other intelligence officials told a Senate panel that Al Qaeda had adjusted its tactics to more effectively strike American targets.

“The biggest threat is not so much that we face an attack like 9/11,” said the C.I.A. director Leon Panetta.

He added that Al Qaeda is adapting its methods in ways that oftentimes make it difficult to detect.

The terrorist organization is deploying operatives to the United States to carry out new attacks from inside the country, including "clean" recruits with a negligible trail of terrorist contacts, CIA Director Leon Panetta said.

As al-Qaida presses new terror plots, it is increasingly relying on new recruits with minimal training and simple devices to carry out attacks.