"Since the end of World War II, each administration has sought to develop and perfect a reliable set of executive institutions to manage national security policy, and tried to install a policy-making and coordination system that reflected each President’s personal management style."
"The National Security Council (NSC) has long been at the center of this foreign policy coordination system, but it has changed many times to conform to the needs and inclinations of each succeeding chief executive."
Terrorism represents a different type of threat to the security of the United States. Unlike conventional warfare, terrorists act in secret, covertly looking for opportunities to wreck as much damage and death in the most lethal way possible on their chosen victim.
In the past, wars were fought on the battlefield with an identifiable enemy wearing a uniform of an enemy country. With terrorism, the enemy is hard to identify, is often living among us, as was the case with some of the 9/11 hijackers, utilizing our own resources as weapons against our own people.
The United States policy, after 9/11, stated by President George W. Bush was that anyone who engaged in terrorist activity against the United States or harbored terrorists, or assisted them in their activities would be considered an enemy of the United States and could expect retribution or preventative action by the United States military on their terrorist activities.
As a rule, America does not invade countries to conquer, America is a country that was, under former Presidents, committed to spreading freedom and liberty around the world. Our military would assist other nations in their battle against hostile takeovers, Communist threats, tyrannical dictators who inflict insurmountable harm on their own people.
The 9/11 attack on the homeland of the United States was the worst since the attack on Pearl Harbor on Dec 7, 1941. In an undeclared war, our soldiers fight around the world in an effort to keep terrorists off the shores of our homeland. It is a difficult battle, at present, seems endless and never ending.
"U.S. policy toward international terrorism contains a significant military component, reflected in current U.S. operations in Afghanistan and (on a smaller scale) the Philippines and in planned deployments of U.S. forces to Yemen and the former Soviet republic of Georgia."