September 08, 2011

Counterstrike: The Untold Story Of America's Secret Campaign Against Al Qaeda - Video

By Eric Schmitt

In the years following the 9/11 attacks, the United States waged a "war on terror" that sought to defeat Al Qaeda through brute force. It soon became clear, however, that this strategy was not working, and by 2005 the Pentagon began looking for a new way. The ensuing effort to craft a more effective counterterrorism strategy is the exact subject of Counterstrike: The Untold Story of America’s Secret Campaign Against al Qaeda, the most recent book by acclaimed New York Times national security reporters and former Center for new American Security (CNAS) Writers in Residence Eric Schmitt and Thom Shanker. On September 8, CNAS held an inaugural book release party at the Willard InterContinental Hotel for Counterstrike. At the release event, Schmitt and Shanker offered the audience an insider’s look at how the U.S. government has adapted its strategy for fighting terrorism since 2001. In a conversation moderated by Steve Inskeep, host of NPR's Morning Edition, they discussed how the strategic changes adopted under George W. Bush and expanded under Barack Obama have helped U.S. officials work cooperatively to redefine and restrict the geographic and cyber arenas in which Al Qaeda can operate. They took questions from the audience regarding the possibility of future terrorist attacks in America, the increasing fear of cyber terrorism, and the lasting impact on Al Qaeda of the killing of Osama bin Laden. The event concluded with a book signing reception.