The President makes a focus shift in the war on terror. A UW expert says there's a slight but significant difference.
The President says we're safer but not safe yet. But the enemy is no longer the group known as Al Qaeda. In fact Osama Bin Laden is not mentioned in the position paper at all. Instead, we are fighting what the administration calls “decentralized networks of extremists”
UW-Madison political scientist John Pevehouse says the new focus is timely as we head toward the November elections with Iraq as a central issue. The administration says these decentralized groups are using the situation in Iraq as a rallying cry and that's why the U.S. can't leave just yet.
And for Pevehouse the most important element of the updated policy statement is singling out Iran as the new source of danger in the world much like Iraq was in 2002.