U.S. Senators express concerns about gaps in Worldwide Threat Assessment

U.S. Sens. Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) joined five of their colleagues in sending a letter this week to Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper Jr. expressing their concerns about the 2015 Worldwide Threat Assessment.

The lawmakers, all members of the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, believe that the 2015 assessment did not fully represent Iran’s state sponsorship of terrorism globally or the danger presented by Iranian support for terrorist proxies and violent Shia militants in the Middle East.

“As you know, Iran has a long history of supporting terrorist activity in the Middle East, Europe and Latin America – and the Department of State has listed Iran as an official state sponsor of terror since 1984,” the senators said. “However, in your 2015 worldwide threat assessment, there is little mention of Iranian support for terrorism or the threat posed by Shia militants.”

The senators asked that Clapper deliver an unclassified assessment of Iran’s support for terrorism and the threat posed by Shia militants.

“We also request that you inform us whether previous drafts of the unclassified assessment contained information regarding Iran’s support for terrorism; the justification for removing those references; and who made the decision to remove them,” the senators said.

In addition to Blunt and Rubio, the letter was also signed by Sens. Dan Coats (R-IN), Susan Collins (R-ME), Tom Cotton (R-AR), James Lankford (R-OK) and James Risch (R-ID).