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Trump White House Vows 'Peace Through Strength,' Missile Defense

U.S. President Donald Trump hands out pens as he signs bills shortly after his inauguration on January 20.

New U.S. President Donald Trump's administration says that defeating Islamic State "and other radical Islamic terror groups" will be the highest priority of an "America first" foreign policy centered on "peace through strength."

A foreign policy statement posted on the White House website on January 20, shortly after Trump was sworn in, said that the United States will "pursue aggressive joint and coalition military operations when necessary" to achieve that goal.

It also promised to "rebuild the American military," saying that the Army and Navy are substantially smaller than they were in 1991 and that Trump "is committed to reversing this trend."

It also included a vow to "embrace diplomacy," saying: "The world must know that we do not go abroad in search of enemies, that we are always happy when old enemies become friends, and when old friends become allies."

A separate statement focusing on the military said the United States "cannot allow other nations to surpass our military capability" and "will pursue the highest level of military readiness."

It said the United States will "develop a state-of-the-art missile defense system to protect against missile-based attacks from states like Iran and North Korea."

It did not say whether the system would differ from those in place or under development, including a European missile shield that Russia has vociferously opposed.

Turning to trade, the statement said the United States will seek to bolster its economy by "fighting for fair but tough trade deals" and will start by withdrawing from the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

With reporting by Reuters
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