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Myers: War On Terrorism Is A Fight On Many Fronts

By Gerry J. Gilmore
American Forces Press Service

DOHA, Qatar, Dec. 22, 2001 - DoD's senior military officer told reporters here today that America, Dec. 26, 2001 – DoD's senior military officer told reporters here today that America and its coalition partners and allies would employ many tools besides military power to win the war against global terrorism.

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Air Force Gen. Richard B. Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, meets with Joint Surveillance and Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) crewmembers Dec. 22 at a Qatari air base. (Photo by Gerry J. Gilmore).
  

(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.

Air Force Gen. Richard B. Myers, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, flew to Doha after meeting with senior Omani government and military officials in Muscat.

After visiting with U.S. troops deployed to Qatar in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, Myers held a press conference in downtown Doha.

He thanked the Qatari government for its stanch support, and told reporters that military power is but one method used by America and its allies to battle global terrorists. The anti-terror war "might be won in the banking system," he explained, to deny funding to terrorists so they couldn't travel freely or finance their operations.

Myers said that law enforcement and diplomatic efforts are other tools that can be used to defeat global terrorists. Yet, the general didn't rule out the use of force. "There might be a military component as well," Myers said.

Time would tell, he noted, if recent U.S. and coalition military successes in Afghanistan will influence other nations to think twice before performing terrorist acts, sponsoring or harboring terrorists, or researching, developing or producing weapons of mass destruction.

Asked if the war on terrorism would be expanded outside of Afghanistan, Myers noted, "there have been no decisions made on next steps. There is planning going on, of course, and we'll keep that confidential."

Myers noted that in some cases, diplomatic solutions could be preferable to the use of military force to defeat some terrorists, as well as keeping the financial card on the table as a viable option.

The United States "obviously, can't talk about its next move against global terrorists," Myers noted. He did say that any decisions made wouldn't be unilateral. "Clearly, we'll consult with our partners on this," he said.

Earlier in the day, the general visited with U.S. troops from all services in the Doha area. At Al-Udeid Air Base, Myers saw service members who work with Joint Surveillance and Target Attack Radar System planes that have flown over Afghanistan to provide ground surveillance and reconnaissance data to commanders, and air-to-air refueling aircraft crews.

Air Force Maj. Brett, using only his rank and first name for security reasons, noted that the JSTARS missions over Afghanistan have been "real successful."

Referring to Myers' visit, Brett said, "It's always great to see the boss out in the field."

At Camp As-Saliyah, Myers visited with Army Central Command and other troops. At every stop, the general told the troops how much he values their efforts and that they were doing a great job. "I appreciate all that you have done for America," he said.

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