The Forum for Development and Human Rights Dialogue issues research paper entitled “Read the Democrats’ National Security Strategy”

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Thursday, April 22, 2021

Press release


On Thursday, April 22, 2021, the Research and Studies Unit of The Forum for Development and Human Rights Dialogue issued a research paper entitled “Reading the Democrats’ Strategy for National Security” 

The paper clarified the administration’s strategy and a new approach to dealing with terrorism, as it explained that the U.S. national security strategy, unlike in the past, no longer refers to terrorism as the primary level of threat to U.S. national security, but China and Russia first, then countries like Iran and North Korea, and then terrorism and extremism. 

The paper highlighted President Biden’s rhetoric on terrorism as an existential threat to the United States of America and noted the need to analyze interim national security strategic directions to understand Biden’s counterterrorism measures. The report also highlights national security priorities in the United States, where terrorism is no longer a major threat. 

The paper also noted that U.S. national security threats in the interim national security strategic guidance are divided as follows: threats without borders, challenges to democratic systems by anti-democratic forces at the national and international levels, change in power distribution, shortcomings in the current international liberal system and finally artificial intelligence.  The paper also outlined how the Biden administration is working to downplay the importance of the Middle East and how it is gradually reducing its powers in its fight against terrorism by withdrawing U.S. troops from Afghanistan and Iraq, reducing the use of military force, ending the war in Yemen, and revoking the 2001 authorization for military force.

Biden’s speech and plans were further reflected in his interim national security strategy directives, noting that the challenges posed by the health crisis, climate change, and flaws in the international system have captured terrorism as an existential threat to the United States.

With regard to the temporary strategic direction of national security, the paper states that Biden’s strategy in dealing with national security is divided into five main categories, the most important of which is the first category of threats faced by the U.S. government that do not belong to any borders and the second category addressed by the strategy is the pressure and threats to democracy at the national and international levels, and the third threat addressed by the national security document is the current change in the distribution of power to the international system by authoritarian governments China and Russia.

With regard to counterterrorism policy reform in the United States, the paper explained that between the September 11, 2001 attacks by al-Qaeda, the United States developed a counterterrorism strategy to use all resources, enforce the law, and respond militarily to the threat posed by terrorism, and terrorism is currently one of the most important elements of U.S. national security, but not the first after two decades of aggressive counterterrorism strategy, the Biden administration is becoming another department focused on multilateral cooperation and warnings.  

With regard to reducing U.S. forces abroad, the paper states that two months after his inauguration, President Biden took steps to end what he called “wars forever” that nearly ended the U.S. military presence in Afghanistan and Iraq, and in January the Pentagon reduced the number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan and Iraq to 2,500, and the reduction in the number of troops in the two countries is the lowest level since the 2001 war on terror.

On counterterrorism abroad, particularly in the Middle East, Biden made it clear in strategic guidance that the use of military force is not the key to the challenges facing the region. 

The government has announced its intention to work with Congress to repeal the 2001 authorization for the use of military force and replace it with a narrow and specific framework capable of protecting Americans from terrorist threats, with a 2001 authorization for the use of military force to counter the 9/11 attacks and to support U.S. counterterrorism efforts in Afghanistan and elsewhere, the paper said.

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