Al Qaeda in Its Third Decade: Irreversible Decline or Imminent Victory?

Al Qaeda in Its Third Decade: Irreversible Decline or Imminent Victory?

Al Qaeda in Its Third Decade: Irreversible Decline or Imminent Victory?

Al Qaeda in Its Third Decade: Irreversible Decline or Imminent Victory?

Excerpt

During 2011, Brian Michael Jenkins was asked to testify about the status of al Qaeda before Congress on several occasions and to brief members of Congress, NATO ambassadors and planners, federal judges, and senior intelligence and law enforcement officials. This paper summarizes those briefings. It focuses on the recurring questions of whether America has won the operational battle but lost the ideological contest; whether homegrown terrorism is a growing threat; whether maintaining American troops in Afghanistan is essential; whether the United States should declare on its own an end to the war on al Qaeda.

The assessment presented in this paper should be of particular interest to policymakers and law enforcement officials who are concerned with the threat of international terrorism and with maintaining national security.

This publication results from the RAND Corporation’s Investment in People and Ideas program. Support for this program is provided, in part, by the generosity of RAND’s donors and by the fees earned on client-funded research.

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