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"Around the same time, Pentagon staff received a memo from DoD's [Department of Defense] Office of Security Review explaining the White House 'prefers to avoid using the term 'Long War' or 'Global War on Terror' (GWOT). Please use 'Overseas Contingency Operation.'' This new, less catchy phrase has been publicly used by several top officials -- from the DoD to the OMB [Office of Management and Budget]. But frustration with the GWOT's terminology is not new. Even President Bush came to regret the one-size-fits-all simplicity of the term he made famous, admitting in 2004, 'We actually misnamed the war on terror, it ought to be the struggle against ideological extremists who do not believe in free societies who happen to use terror as a weapon to try to shake the conscience of the free world.' Obama's rhetorical re-assessment of the GWOT into a series of nameless, and seemingly disconnected, Overseas Contingency Operations (or OCOs) has as much to do with the GWOT's controversial verbiage as it does with his desire to reshape the conflict along a more logical, and sustainable, axis."
This article was published in Culture and Conflict Review (Summer 2009), v.3 no.2
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