This week news media pushed the report that Admiral Tidd of SOUTHCOM stated that there were 100 and more IS active assets in T&T. The first question was why Adm. Tidd would reveal in public such operational information in light of the SOUTHCOM article in Dialogo on the Carnival 2018 threat? Naturally, I was awaiting the regular post of such press conferences by Adm. Tidd on the SOUTHCOM website and lo and behold fake news again in the tradition of that “famous” Saturday Guardian article. This is what Adm. Tidd actually said on T&T in the press briefing. Click the link for the transcript and the video.
“Q: OK, General (sic), Hans Nichols with NBC News.
At the top, you talked a lot about extremists and ISIS. Just wondering what sort of evidence you have that either ISIS cells or networks are in your AOR.
ADM. TIDD: I think I would just point to a couple of the foreign fighters that have been very vocal in the past, speaking in English language in the — in the ISIS fight in Syria, that originated in Trinidad and Tobago.
We know they came. We know that the government of Trinidad has spoken of 100 or so that — foreign fighters that have gone to that particular fight. So that’s — I guess that would be the — probably the best indicator that, yes, in fact, there are individuals who have been radicalized, who this pernicious method — message is — has taken root.
And so it’s one that is of concern to the government of Trinidad and Tobago. They’ve — they have focused on it. And so I think it’s a — it’s an area that we all have to take into consideration.”