CTC Sentinel. Volume 7, Issue 9, September 2014
MILITARY ACADEMY WEST POINT NY COMBATING TERRORISM CENTER
Pagination or Media Count:
In February 2003, the Central Intelligence Agency published a National Strategy for Combating Terrorism. 1 Drawing on lessons learned from the failures that led to the devastating terrorist attacks in New York and Washington on 911, the CIA warned that terrorism cannot have a place of refuge and, as such, the United States must ensure effective governance over ungoverned territory, which could provide sanctuary to terrorists. 2 This decision was directly based on the example of Afghanistan, where the United States had detachedly observed to its later regret as up to 20,000 foreign fighters traveled to the region in search of paramilitary training and expertise to launch a Sunni Muslim revolution.3 The events of 911 made it painfully clear that there could be severe consequences for permitting ungoverned spaces to lapse into the control of stateless extremists. Had more of this first generation of muhajirin possessed European or North American travel documents and citizenship as in the case with the Syria and Iraq conflicts today the United States might have faced an unprecedented security threat in the pursuant years.
- Unconventional Warfare