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December 4th, 2008
01:10 PM ET

Extreme Challenges: How Obama should fight al Qaeda and its allies

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Program note: Tune in tonight at 11 pm ET for the show, “Extreme Challenges: President Obama”, to hear Anderson and the CNN team lay out the challenges and offer America’s 44th President some advice

Peter Bergen
CNN National Security Analyst

The Mumbai attacks remind the world that the intertwined problems of Pakistan, India and Afghanistan will be the most extreme foreign policy challenge that President Obama will face as he assumes office.

To dismantle al Qaeda and its allied jihadist groups, such as the Pakistani militant group Lashkar-e-Tayyiba that carried out the Mumbai attacks according to Indian and American officials, and also to bring peace to the entire South Asian region, the Obama administration should take the following measures:

1. Fight al Qaeda and its allies

Seven years after the September 11 attacks, the U.S. government must continue to improve its understanding of terrorist networks throughout the region to identify the linkages between jihadist groups from the Taliban to al Qaeda to the Kashmiri militant organizations such as Lashkar-e-Tayyiba that threaten not only the South Asian regional order but also global peace.

One of the building blocks of such a database should be the identification of suicide attackers in Afghanistan and Pakistan, which could be accomplished using DNA samples, accounts on jihadist Web sites, good intelligence work and media reports.

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Filed under: Barack Obama • Peter Bergen • Raw Politics • War on Terror
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. Avijit Roy

    Best option for India and other Countries is to create terror in the mind of terrorists and their mentors. Start covert operations. Send armed commandos in disguise and also send militias/ pro-India mafia to kill the key terrorists, financers. Take tactical help from CIA/Mossad and create fear pschycosis in the mind of Al Qaida/LET/ISI. Only ruthless terror will curb the face of terror. Start covert action soon and sooner the better.After such covert operation, India should deny the incident about the involvement of RAW and instead blame the "Stateless Actors" just like Pakistan deed. Put Pakistan's own medicine into their own mouth.

    December 5, 2008 at 7:14 am |
  2. umer saleem

    obama should call back american forces from iraq and afghan & stop terrorism

    December 5, 2008 at 1:01 am |
  3. Debra Curtiss

    Best show ever. Incredible job!

    December 4, 2008 at 11:27 pm |
  4. D. A. Reuter, Bremerton, WA

    If I were the President Elect, I would appoint a Muslim in cabinet position. This will tell the Islamic world that American leadership is not filled with Christians and Jews, it would be a powerful psychological/propaganda weapon.

    Now if the Constitutional challenged religious right and neo-cons would just take their collective noses out of affairs of the State, there would be no problems. Remember that when religion gets involve with how a nation is run, horrific things happens (ie. institutionalized anti-Semitism by the Catholic Church in Europe made the breeding grounds of the World War II and the Holocaust possible).

    December 4, 2008 at 7:14 pm |