President Trump’s new counterterrorism strategy promises to fight “radical Islamist” extremists and Iran to end the terrorist threat to the U.S., the White House said Thursday.
In what the administration called the first comprehensive plan to fight terrorism since 2011, the strategy details efforts to pursue terrorists “to their source” and counter terrorist radicalization and recruitment. Using the phrase “radical Islamists” shows Mr. Trump’s preference for targeting terrorists with a description that former President Barack Obama shunned as an unnecessary provocation.
“The National Strategy for Counterterrorism that I approved today will help protect our great nation, enhance our national security, and guide our continued effort to defeat terrorists and terrorist organizations that threaten the United States,” Mr. Trump said in a statement.
The president said his plan “outlines the approach of the United States to countering the increasingly complex and evolving terrorist threats and represents the nation’s first fully articulated counterterrorism strategy since 2011.”
“It provides the strategic guidance needed to protect the United States against all terrorist threats, while simultaneously fostering the agility to anticipate, prevent, and respond to new threats,” he said.
The 25-page document said extremist groups, using encrypted communications and social media, are spread around the world to a greater extent than ever before.
“While we have succeeded in disrupting large-scale attacks in the homeland since 2001,” the report said, “we have not sufficiently mitigated the overall threat that terrorists pose. We will eliminate terrorists’ ability to threaten America, our interests and our engagement in the world.”