Terrorism global war service madal


The Global War on Terrorism Service Medal (GWOTSM) is a prestigious military decoration awarded to members of the United States Armed Forces who have displayed exceptional courage and dedication while serving in the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT). This medal holds significant meaning, representing the bravery and sacrifice of service members in their efforts to combat terrorism and protect freedom and democracy worldwide. In this article, we will delve into the history, criteria, design, and profound impact of the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal.

The Genesis of the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal

The Global War on Terrorism Service Medal was established by Executive Order 13289, signed by President George W. Bush on March 12, 2003. This prestigious award aimed to recognize the outstanding contributions of the brave men and women who have served in the military since September 11, 2001, in response to the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon

Eligibility Criteria for the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal

To be eligible for the GWOTSM, service members must have served on active duty or in the Reserve Component of the U.S. Armed Forces on or after September 11, 2001, to a future date to be determined by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD). The qualifying period is continuously updated to ensure that those who have contributed to the ongoing efforts in the Global War on Terrorism are duly recognized.

The Design of the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal

The GWOTSM features a striking design, symbolizing the fight against terrorism and the pursuit of peace. On the obverse side, a laurel wreath surrounds a terrestrial globe with an eagle atop it, representing the United States vigilance and determination in safeguarding the world. The reverse side depicts an eagle’s head with spread wings, a reminder of the strength and valor of the American military.

The medal’s ribbon consists of a central gold stripe flanked by stripes of blue, white, red, and green. The gold stripe symbolizes excellence, while the other colors represent the unity of purpose in the global fight against terrorism. The ribbon’s blue and white stripes are a nod to the American flag, underscoring the nation’s commitment to defending liberty and justice.

Recognizing Sacrifice and Service

The Global War on Terrorism Service Medal serves as a poignant reminder of the immense sacrifices made by service members and their families in the ongoing conflict against terrorism. It honors those who have endured long deployments, faced danger on foreign soil, and made personal sacrifices to protect the freedoms and values cherished by all Americans.

Deployment and Sacrifice

Many service members deployed to combat zones or participated in counterterrorism operations worldwide. Their devotion to duty and willingness to face danger, uncertainty, and hardship, often for extended periods, exemplify the spirit of selflessness and dedication that the GWOTSM seeks to recognize.

Impact on Service Members and Their Families

The toll of war extends beyond the battlefield, affecting service members’ mental and emotional well-being. The GWOTSM acknowledges the resilience and strength of those who faced the challenges of deployment, while also recognizing the support and sacrifices made by their families back home.

Commemorating a Global Effort

The Global War on Terrorism Service Medal is a testament to the international coalition that came together to combat terrorism. U.S. service members worked alongside allies and partners from around the world, building lasting friendships and strengthening global security.

Multinational Cooperation

The war on terror transcends borders, and the GWOTSM acknowledges the critical contributions made by allied forces from various nations. These joint efforts fostered cooperation, trust, and camaraderie among nations committed to promoting peace and stability.

Partnering with Local Communities

Throughout the Global War on Terrorism, U.S. service members collaborated closely with local communities in conflict zones. They assisted in reconstruction and humanitarian efforts, leaving a positive impact on the lives of those affected by conflict.

A Symbol of Resilience and Hope

The Global War on Terrorism Service Medal serves as a symbol of resilience, hope, and the pursuit of a more peaceful world. It honors the determination and unity of the American people and their allies in the face of adversity, reflecting the unyielding spirit that defines the fight against terrorism.


The Global War on Terrorism Service Medal stands as a powerful tribute to the courage, sacrifice, and dedication of the men and women who have served in the United States Armed Forces during the Global War on Terrorism. This prestigious award recognizes the profound impact of their efforts in protecting freedom, democracy, and peace worldwide. As the conflict against terrorism continues, the GWOTSM serves as a reminder of the ongoing commitment to defend the values cherished by all Americans and the global community.

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