Archive for the ‘National Strategy for Combating Terror (2006)’ Category

This is the preface of the National Strategy for Combating Terrorism (2006).




Overview of America’s National Strategy for Combating Terrorism

America is at war with a transnational terrorist movement fueled by a radical ideology of hatred,
oppression, and murder. Our National Strategy for Combating Terrorism, first published in
February 2003, recognizes that we are at war and that protecting and defending the Homeland, the
American people, and their livelihoods remains our first and most solemn obligation.
Our strategy also recognizes that the War on Terror is a different kind of war. From the beginning,
it has been both a battle of arms and a battle of ideas. Not only do we fight our terrorist enemies on
the battlefield, we promote freedom and human dignity as alternatives to the terrorists’ perverse
vision of oppression and totalitarian rule. The paradigm for combating terrorism now involves the
application of all elements of our national power and influence. Not only do we employ military
power, we use diplomatic, financial, intelligence, and law enforcement activities to protect the
Homeland and extend our defenses, disrupt terrorist operations, and deprive our enemies of what
they need to operate and survive. We have broken old orthodoxies that once confined our
counterterrorism efforts primarily to the criminal justice domain.
This updated strategy sets the course for winning the War on Terror. It builds directly from the
National Security Strategy issued in March 2006 as well as the February 2003 National Strategy for
Combating Terrorism, and incorporates our increased understanding of the enemy. From the
beginning, we understood that the War on Terror involved more than simply finding and bringing to
justice those who had planned and executed the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Our
strategy involved destroying the larger al-Qaida network and also confronting the radical ideology
that inspired others to join or support the terrorist movement. Since 9/11, we have made substantial
progress in degrading the al-Qaida network, killing or capturing key lieutenants, eliminating
safehavens, and disrupting existing lines of support. Through the freedom agenda, we also have
promoted the best long-term answer to al-Qaida’s agenda: the freedom and dignity that comes when
human liberty is protected by effective democratic institutions.
In response to our efforts, the terrorists have adjusted, and so we must continue to refine our
strategy to meet the evolving threat. Today, we face a global terrorist movement and must confront
the radical ideology that justifies the use of violence against innocents in the name of religion. As
laid out in this strategy, to win the War on Terror, we will:
• Advance effective democracies as the long-term antidote to the ideology of terrorism;
• Prevent attacks by terrorist networks;
• Deny weapons of mass destruction to rogue states and terrorist allies who seek to use them;
• Deny terrorists the support and sanctuary of rogue states;
• Deny terrorists control of any nation they would use as a base and launching pad for terror; and
• Lay the foundations and build the institutions and structures we need to carry the fight forward
against terror and help ensure our ultimate success.

The National Strategy for Combating Terrorism (2006):