Is the war on terror over? According to the Obama administration, it is.
Here is the story from NationalJournal.com.
"The war on terror is over," one senior State Department official who works on Mideast issues told me. "Now that we have killed most of al Qaida, now that people have come to see legitimate means of expression, people who once might have gone into al Qaida see an opportunity for a legitimate Islamism." (In a Tuesday night update to this post, White House spokesman Tommy Vietor clarified that while the "war on terror" concept has been dropped, "we absolutely have never said our war against al Qaida is over. We are prosecuting that war at an unprecedented pace."
The new approach is made possible by the double impact of the Arab Spring, which supplies a new means of empowerment to young Arabs other than violent jihad, and Obama’s savagely successful military drone campaign against the worst of the violent jihadists, al Qaida.
The Obama administration probably has a couple of motivations behind this:
- Taking credit for the 10+ years of the war on terror all for himself.
- Playing politics again before an election year.
- Pandering to the Muslim world.