"On 17 September 2002, approximately one year after the horrific attacks of 11 September 2001, President Bush promulgated his first National Security Strategy. It was a bold and aggressive strategy that reflected the astonishment of the nation in the immediate post-9/11 world. Woven throughout the Security Strategy are four major themes with significant international law implications: A Nation at War: The United States has been thrust into a struggle against global terrorism and those who harbor or support global terrorists; Preemption: The United States will be proactive in identifying and defeating emerging threats before they are fully formed; American Internationalism: Multilateral institutions and the support of coalition partners are valuable, but the United States will not hesitate to act alone to protect its national interests; and Transformation: The U.S. national security institutions will be transformed to meet the challenges of the twenty-first century. Now, three years after the Security Strategy was promulgated, and four years after 9/11, this article will reflect on some of the major legal issues embedded in the Security Strategy. It will also prescribe improvements for any future national security strategy. These comments are based on a review of the Security Strategy and a number of implementing documents, specifically the Secretary of Defense's National Defense Strategy promulgated in March 2005, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff's National Military Strategy dated 2004 but complementary to the 2005 National Defense Strategy, and the National Strategy for Maritime Security promulgated in September 2005."
Naval Law Review (2005), v.52, p. 60-97