On the heels of the anniversary of 9/11 and amidst foreign policy shakeups in Washington, there is one question everyone is asking: what is America’s way forward in the Global War on Terrorism?
The conflict, which began in 2001 following the 9/11 terrorist attacks, is now America’s longest-running war.
Ken Stiles is a retired CIA officer, and he has real-world experience in intelligence, espionage, covert operations, and the war in Afghanistan.
Stiles makes it clear: the best way to go about winning the War on Terror is by using the CIA’s model from the start of the conflict.
In a matter of months beginning in September 2001, America destroyed Al-Qaeda and ousted the Taliban by implementing a strategy based on collecting intelligence, providing aid, supporting locals, and offering air support.
It’s a model that worked then, and it can work again now.
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The Global War on Terrorism: what is America’s way forward in the forever war?
What’s the best way to go about it? It’s the CIA model from 2001. Hank Crumpton, the CIA officer who set up the strategy, sent the first team, “Jawbreaker,” into the Panjshir Valley in September 2001.
We supported the local Afghan warlords against the Taliban. We provided them with aid, both lethal and humanitarian. We collected intelligence and helped them fight the fight. We instructed the US Air Force to provide destructive airpower against the enemy.
By December, the Taliban had been destroyed. Tens of thousands had been killed. By the spring of 2002, Al-Qaeda had been destroyed and was no longer in the country.
It’s a model that worked then, and it can work again anywhere.
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