Panetta: al Qaeda is "still a real threat"

In an upcoming "60 Minutes" interview, the defense secretary talks says continued pressure must be put on al Qaeda.
CBS News

In an interview for "60 Minutes," CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley sat down with Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta to talk about the many places in the world that America is taking action. An excerpt follows.

Pelley: How many countries are we currently engaged in a shooting war?

Panetta: It's a good question. (laughs) That's, you know, it's --

Pelley: You have to stop and count.

Panetta: I'll have to stop and think about that because, you know, obviously we're going after al Qaeda wherever they're at. And clearly we're confronting al Qaeda in Pakistan. We're confronting the nodes of al Qaeda in Yemen, Somalia, North Africa. And obviously whatever al Qaeda links are involved in Afghanistan.

Pelley: Have we defeated al Qaeda?

Panetta: Not yet. They're still a real threat. There's still al Qaeda out there. And we've gotta continue to put pressure on them wherever they're at.

"60 Minutes" will air a profile of Secretary Panetta -- who led the effort to get Osama bin Laden -- this Sunday at 7 p.m. ET.

  • Scott Pelley

    Correspondent, "60 Minutes"