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Jihadist groups, namely al-Qaeda and the Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL), remain “the primary trans-national terrorist threat” to the United States despite 17 years of U.S.-led military efforts against radical Islamist groups, the White House pointed out in its National Strategy for Counterterrorism unveiled on Thursday.
The counterterrorism strategy, released by the White House on Thursday, noted:
Years - Conflict - Costs - Blood - Treasure
After seventeen years of armed conflict and significant costs in American blood and treasure, our efforts to prevent and counter terrorism have met with mixed success. While we have succeeded in disrupting large-scale attacks in the homeland since 2001, we have not sufficiently mitigated the overall threat that terrorists pose.
ISIS remains the foremost radical Islamist terrorist group and the primary transnational terrorist threat to the United States, despite ongoing United States and coalition civilian and military efforts that have diminished the group’s footprint in Iraq and Syria, killed thousands of its members, and curtailed its global expansion.
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Consistent with recent assessments, the strategy acknowledged that ISIS branches outside the Middle East also pose a significant threat to the United States.
The White House reported:
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The group’s [ISIS] global reach remains robust, with eight official branches and more than two dozen networks regularly conducting terrorist and insurgent operations across Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. Despite many setbacks, ISIS maintains a sophisticated and durable media and online presence that allows it to encourage and enable sympathizers worldwide to conduct dozens of attacks within target countries, including the United States. The increase in attacks by persons mobilized to violence in the United States underscores the ability of ISIS to inspire terrorist attacks.
Almost 17 years to the day since the U.S. invaded Afghanistan in pursuit of al-Qaeda, the group still represents a menace to the American homeland.
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“Al-Qa’ida’s global network remains resilient and poses an enduring threat to the homeland and United States...
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