The White House quietly issued instructions to American embassies and government agencies outlining what themes to emphasize when commemorating the 10 year anniversary of 9/11.

The recommendations -- one set for citizens or allies abroad and one for federal agencies -- strike a balance between remembering those who perished on 9/11 and honoring those whose service has helped to prevent another catastrophic attack on American soil.

The foreign guidelines encourage officials to present a positive, forward-looking narrative, according to The New York Times, an attempt to underscore the fact that terrorism represents a global threat. They also make reference to the resilience of people worldwide, in New York or Nairobi, Bali or Belfast, Mumbai or Manila, or Lahore or London.

The important theme is to show the world how much we realize that 9/11 - the attacks themselves and violent extremism writ large - is not 'just about us,' one official told the Times.

While President Barack Obama has stressed that this anniversary will be one of service and rememberance, the documents also look forward to another potentially devastating event.

Resilience takes many forms, including the dedication and courage to move forward, according to the guidelines for foreign audiences. While we must never forget those who we lost, we must do more than simply remember them -- we must sustain our resilience and remain united to prevent new attacks and new victims.

The guidelines also seek to advance the narrative that since 9/11 al-Qaida has been rendered increasingly irrelevant, advising officials to minimize references to al-Qaida.