Crisis in Strategic Communication: A Combatant Command Solution   [open pdf - 421KB]

"When the United States became the world's sole super power, the events of September 11, 2001, were not foreseeable, and the hatred that many people currently have for America was not easily predictable. Today Islamic terrorists want to destroy the U.S. way of life and eliminate Western influence in the world. The threat we face today is as serious as the one we faced more than fifty years ago at the beginning of the Cold War. The Cold War taught us many lessons about dealing with dis-information campaigns and the time is right to remember those lessons. The U.S. inability to positively promote an honorable image in the Global War on Terrorism has created a crisis in our Strategic Communication strategy. Our adversaries, both foreign and domestic, will continue to misrepresent U.S. goals and values in an effort to undermine our war aims. Strategic Communication is a difficult mission to get right every time but in order to win the battle for the hearts and minds of people around the world we must take this mission seriously and apply the right resources and talents to the solution. As part of the solution we need to build Combatant Command offices that are dedicated solely to the Strategic Communication mission. We should accept the fact that Strategic Communication is vital to our long term objectives and build and maintain organizations that can perform it. Fifty years from now our grandchildren will ask how we won (or lost) the Global War on Terrorism. Fifty years from now our grandchildren will ask why the Islamic world loves (or still hates) the United States."

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