White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest repeated the increasingly dubious claim that “Core al Qaeda has been decimated” during a press briefing Friday after tough questioning from ABC’s Jon Karl.
“In light of this major military operation against a group that was planning an imminent attack on the United States, is it time to revise and extend what the White House has said over and over again by claiming that core al Qaeda has been decimated?” Karl asked. “Is it clear now that was simply an incorrect statement.”
“No, it continues to be clear to this day that core al Qaeda has been decimated,” Earnest said.
Karl pointed out that the U.S. just had to carry out an attack on the Khorasan group, which is made up of al Qaeda leaders who have fled from Afghanistan and Pakistan.
“They were still able to pose a threat and plan an imminent attack that you were so concerned about that you’ve launched a military campaign against them,” Karl asked. “How can you call that decimated?”