Washington: President Barack Obama on Saturday said that even though violent extremism and an evolving terrorist threat raise a persistent risk of attacks on America, the country is now stronger and better positioned to safeguard its interest in an "insecure world".
"Today, the US is stronger and better positioned to seize the opportunities of a still new century and safeguard our interests against the risks of an insecure world," Obama told the Congress in a letter conveying his second National Security Strategy, which would drive his foreign policy and national security for the remaining of his nearly two years term.
Noting that globally the US has moved beyond the ground wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that defined so much of American foreign policy over the past decade, Obama said at this pivotal moment, the US continue to face serious challenges to national security.
"Violent extremism and an evolving terrorist threat raise a persistent risk of attacks on America and our allies. Escalating challenges to cybersecurity, aggression by Russia, the accelerating impacts of climate change, and the outbreak of infectious diseases all give rise to anxieties about global security," he said.
"We must be clear-eyed about these and other challenges and recognise the US has a unique capability to mobilise and lead the international community to meet them," he said, adding that any successful strategy to ensure the safety of the American people and advance the national security interests "must begin with an undeniable truth ?- America must lead."
"Strong and sustained American leadership is essential to a rules-based international order that promotes global security and prosperity as well as the dignity and human rights of all peoples. The question is never whether America should lead, but how we lead," he said.
"Abroad, we are demonstrating that while we will act unilaterally against threats to our core interests, we are stronger when we mobilise collective action. That is why we are leading international coalitions to confront the acute challenges posed by aggression, terrorism, and disease," said the US President.
He said that the rebalance to Asia and the Pacific is yielding deeper ties with a more diverse set of allies and partners.
The US is deepening its investment in Africa, accelerating access to energy, health, and food security in a rapidly rising region, he said.
"Our opening to Cuba will enhance our engagement in our own hemisphere, where there are enormous opportunities to consolidate gains in pursuit of peace, prosperity, democracy, and energy security," he said.
Obama said the US is committed to advancing the Prague
Agenda, including stopping the spread of nuclear weapons and securing nuclear materials.
"We are currently testing whether it is possible to achieve a comprehensive resolution to assure the international community that Iran's nuclear programme is peaceful, while the Joint Plan of Action has halted the progress of Iran's programme" he said.
On climate change, he said, "We are building on our own energy security?and the ground-breaking commitment we made with China to reduce greenhouse gas emissions?to cement an international consensus on arresting climate change."
"We are shaping global standards for cybersecurity and building international capacity to disrupt and investigate cyber threats. We are playing a leading role in defining the international community's post-2015 agenda for eliminating extreme poverty and promoting sustainable development while prioritizing women and youth," said the US President.