2014-05-31T124017Z_1_LYNXMPEA4U05Q_RTROPTP_2_USA-OBAMA

Obama's counterterrorism doctrine: Let locals lead the fight

U.S. President Barack Obama pauses before he speaks about the My Brother's Keeper Task Force while in the Roosevelt Room at the White House in WashingtonBy David Rhode NEW YORK (Reuters) – In a foreign policy address this week, U.S. President Barack Obama gave his clearest outline yet of his counterterrorism strategy. Al Qaeda splinter groups remain the largest threat to the United States, he said, but Washington must respond to it in a new way: by training local security forces, not deploying American ground troops. “We have to develop a strategy that matches this diffuse threat – one that expands our reach without sending forces that stretch our military too thin, or stir up local resentments,” Obama said. “We need partners to fight terrorists alongside us.” But critics say America’s past efforts to train local security forces have had mixed results. Washington has a poor track record of applying the long-term resources, funding and attention needed to carry out such efforts successfully.

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