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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Who is the US partnering with on counter-terrorism? Turkey!

From The State Department:
As stated in President Obama’s National Counterterrorism Strategy, the U.S. is committed to strengthening the global counterterrorism (CT) architecture in a manner that complements and reinforces the CT work of existing multilateral bodies. The Administration’s signature initiative in this area is the Global Counterterrorism Forum (GCTF), which is intended to ensure the necessary international architecture is in place to address 21st century challenges.

The U.S. proposed the creation of the GCTF to address the evolving terrorist threat in a way that would bring enduring benefits by helping frontline countries and affected regions acquire the means to deal with threats they face. It is based on a recognition that the U.S. alone cannot eliminate every terrorist or terrorist organization. Rather, the international community must come together to assist countries as they work to confront the terrorist threat.

The 30 founding members of the GCTF are: Algeria, Australia, Canada, China, Colombia, Denmark, Egypt, the European Union, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Morocco, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Pakistan, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

The GCTF will consist of a strategic-level Coordinating Committee, co-chaired initially by the United States and Turkey; five thematic and regional expert-driven working groups; and a small administrative unit that the U.S. will host for the first few years.

Official Launch: The GCTF will be launched officially in New York at the level of foreign ministers on the margins of the upcoming UN General Assembly meetings in September 2011. In addition to adopting the GCTF’s founding documents (a political declaration and terms of reference) and short speeches from the Co-Chairs (the U.S. and Turkey) and other GCTF members, the event will include the announcement of two concrete deliverables, thus highlighting the GCTF’s practical, action-oriented focus from the outset.
It is the ultimate in multilateralism - when fighting terrorists, include countries that support and sponsor terrorists!

Barry Rubin has lots more.

More from the announcement:
In addition, the Global Survivors Network will premiere a short film of interviews of survivors of terrorism from around the globe. The film will depict the different ways in which survivors are now helping to prevent terrorism by speaking out against violent extremist ideologies.
Do you think that this film mentions a single Israeli victim of terror? One only needs to look at the list of members of this esteemed forum to know the answer without bothering to watch it.

It reminds me of this insightful piece last week by Marty Peretz at TNR.
I wish it would be historically possible—that is, historically honest—for Israel to be omitted from the long list of target countries that have been the victims of terrorism. Alas, it is not. But President Obama has a habit of making such lists, and he always fails to include Israel (or anyplace within its borders) as a target of this distinctive and most vicious form of warfare.
And he brings examples.