The Bush administration’s new, and still evolving, counter-terrorism strategy stems from the conviction that military might alone cannot win the war against religious extremists, nor can the US succeed without traditional allies. Repairing the transatlantic relationship that was so badly damaged by disagreements over Iraq has been a priority since the second Bush administration took office in January. Officials say it reflects a significant shift in foreign policy under a new team that is predominantly pro-European in outlook and background. The change in course is also driven by the realisation that the administration is losing American public support for the war in Iraq. Meanwhile, claims that Iraq has become the “central front” in the war on terror and that the world is a safer place as a result are met with growing scepticism”¦ Muslim groups in the US say a conscious decision by the administration to reach out to moderate Muslims would be both welcome and long overdue. Rabiah Ahmed, of the Council on American Islamic Relations, says its advocacy group has long promoted this. But it had met with little response from the administration. “You have to wonder why. There has been more dialogue in the UK,” she said. (MORE)



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