Washington: A year after the US raid that killed Osama bin Laden, al Qaeda is hobbled and hunted. Officials say it`s too busy surviving to carry out another September 11-style attack on US soil.
But the terrorist network dreams of payback, and US counterterrorist officials warn that, in time, its offshoots may deliver.
A decade of wars in Iraq and Afghanistan has forced al Qaeda`s affiliates to regroup, from Yemen to Iraq. And bin Laden`s No 2 man is thought to be hiding in Pakistan`s mountains.
Seth Jones, an analyst and adviser to US special operations forces, calls it "wishful thinking" to say al Qaeda is on the brink of defeat.
Officials say new al Qaeda branches are hitting Western targets and US allies overseas, and still aspire to match their parent organisation`s 9/11 milestone.