Extremists attempting to obtain bioweapons, officials warn

Top government officials speaking at a special hearing on Capitol Hill warned that extremists are trying to gain control of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons in Pakistan

The officials also warned of a major cyber-attack, which has become increasingly possible, and that an assault on the power-grid of America could be a major battle ground in the future, the Pittsburgh Post Gazette re[prts.

“(Extremists) remain committed to obtaining all types of weapons of mass destruction,” Michael E. Leiter, director of the National Counterterrorism Center, said, according to the Pittsburgh Post Gazette.

Terrorist chieftains in Yemen and near the Arabian Peninsula have a strong intent to obtain the weapons, but the United States has said it remains committed to keeping the weapons out of their hands.

In addition, the meeting highlighted several key areas of the country that could be hit by a potential cyber attack.

"The Internet, the cyber-arena,...this is a vastly growing area of information that can be used and abused in a number of ways,” Leon Panetta, the director of the CIA, said, according to the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. “When it comes to national security, I think this represents the battleground for the future. I've often said that I think the potential for the next Pearl Harbor could very well be a cyber-attack. (A cyber-attack) brings down the financial system, brings down our government systems. You could paralyze this country. And I think it's a real potential, and that's the thing we have to really pay attention to."