German poet and historian Friedrich Schiller once said that even the weak become strong when they are united. And that is how it must be if global society is to defeat the threat that is terrorism.
"We have learned ... that our security interests are intertwined – and that our counter-terrorism efforts must be, as well," said head of the U.S. Department of Justice, Attorney General Eric Holder at the United Nations Secretary-General’s Symposium On International Counter-Terrorism Cooperation.
"Today, we know that our ability to ensure the safety of our people – and to seek justice on their behalf – depends on our willingness to work as partners, and to ensure that our different perspectives and approaches never distract us from our shared objectives, or become obstacles to fulfilling our collective responsibilities."
The United Nations leads the way in this battle by developing an international legal and policy framework to foster collaboration and information sharing, to promote the rule of law, to protect civil liberties, to enhance our capacity to identify and combat terror threats, said Attorney General Holder. But every individual member state has its own role to play in this fight, whether as a partner, as a convener, or as a direct provider of assistance, intelligence, and expertise to the rest. Or just as importantly, as an actor working within its own borders to eliminate the causes of terrorism.
"The United States is firmly committed to the rule of law approach enshrined in this framework and to strengthening the capacity of civilian courts around the world, which have time and again shown their effectiveness at bringing terrorists to justice," said Attorney General Holder.
"As we explore new and innovative ways to reinforce existing relationships, and to forge new ones, I am here to pledge the best efforts of the United States in supporting this mission, and in fulfilling our commitment to work every day – in common cause, and with this community of nations and the United Nations itself – to achieve security, opportunity, and justice for all."