WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Bush, in the first national security strategy he submits to Congress, will formalize his new "strike first" military policy against terrorists and rogue states that possess chemical, biological or nuclear weapons.
White House press secretary Ari Fleischer said Monday that the document, required annually by law, will be ready for release to Congress and the public by early fall. It is to pull together other foreign relations and national security policies that Bush has articulated since Sept. 11, including new political- and economic-reform demands on countries that receive U.S. aid.
"It's part of a charge that the National Security Council has to come up with a broad statement of strategy and policy," Fleischer said.
Vice President Dick Cheney said Monday old doctrines of security will not always apply in this new century.
"During the Cold War we were able to manage the threats with arms control agreements and a policy of deterrence," Cheney said in a speech to the Democrat Union Conference, a coalition of conservative Christian Democratic center and right center political parties.
"We have enemies with nothing to defend," Cheney said. "A group like al-Qaida cannot be deterred or placated or reasoned with at a conference table. For that reason, this struggle will not end with a treaty or accommodation of terrorists."
Cheney said the struggle will end with the "complete and utter destruction" of terrorist networks.
He said "grave threats are accumulating" against the United States. "Inaction will only bring them closer. We will not wait until it is too late."
Cheney said the United States is "especially concerned by any possible linkup" between certain governments and terror networks. He referred to Iraq particularly, saying that President Saddam Hussein has shown he's willing to use weapons of mass destruction
Bush articulated his "strike first" doctrine in a June 1 commencement address at West Point, where he told the military academy's graduates: "The war on terror will not be won on the defensive. ... We must take the battle to the enemy, disrupt its plans, and confront the worst threats before they emerge."
Such a pre-emptive stance is a departure from the decades-old Cold War policies of containment and deterrence that were built around the theory that an enemy would not attack the United States because such an attack would mean a certain and devastating retaliatory strike.
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