Politics and Terrorism
At 8:46 A.M. on September eleventh, two thousand one, the North Tower of the World Trade Center was hit by a terrorist flown American Airlines Flight 11(9/11). This event would push the United States and the rest of the world in to a new era where countries could unite to face one common enemy, terrorism. While the civilized world mourned and supported the United States, the savages who indulge in the darkest form of violence cheered. There are two sides to every story, everything has influential elements to shape their outcome. This has never been more present than it is in terrorism. Politics influence the origin of terrorism/counter-terrorism through prevention programs, diversified education and by administering regressive/progressive action.
Politics do, believe it or not, influence the creation of terrorism. Research provided by Laron Williams, Michael Koch and Jason Smith in their book “The Political Consequences of Terrorism: Terror Events, Casualties, and Government Duration” suggest that weak governments who lack military prowess or control over their people will use scare tactics or terrorism to seem bigger, stronger and more powerful than they really are. If they do not use terrorism then they run the risk of losing their peoples obedience, wealth and resources. If terrorist organizations did not use terrorism then they would simply lose power, because they are too weak to stand on their own. It can be concluded from this research that terrorist organizations attack other political structures to give the illusion of power, ferocity and strength over their rival, which is simply desperation to be in control. This adequate research proves that politics directly influence the creation of terrorism.
Just like politics influence the creation of terrorism, they also influence the creation of counter-terrorism. Ever since the events of September eleventh two thousand one, the United States Government has taken leaps and bounds in the field of counterterrorism (Couto). Several new Government created programs were developed as a direct result of nine eleven. One of these programs is Homeland security. Homeland security has five missions which are to “one, prevent terrorism and enhancing security, two, secure and manage our borders, three, to enforce and administer our immigration laws, four, to safeguard and secure the cyberspace and 5, to ensure resilience to disasters.” (DHS). This program was created right after nine eleven through a legislative piece written by former President George W. Bush. This is a perfect example of politics influencing the birth of counter-terrorism, because the main goal of this Department is ensuring terrorist never reach America. Another example of a legislature correlation with counter-terrorism is the Transport Security Administration. This organization was created after nine eleven, just like the Department of Homeland Security, and they have a similar goal; which is “Protect the nation’s transportation systems to ensure freedom of movement for people and commerce.” (TSA). Where the Department of Homeland Security focuses on protection and prevention of terrorism for the entire United States, the Transportation Security Administration focuses on ensuring that terrorist cannot access airlines and other modes of transportation without first being apprehended. Both of these organizations directly correlate to the point, which is politics have significant influence on the origin of terrorist prevention or counter-terrorism.
Education also influences the spread/ halt terrorism. Education is crucial to the development of any country, which is backed up with research in “The Political Consequences of Terrorism: Terror Events, Casualties, and Government Duration” (Williams et al). Martin Luther King Jr. once stated “The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.” The words of Reverend Martin Luther King Jr, though indirect, can directly be applied to the spread/halt of terrorism. Studies by Alexander Lee of Project Muse have discovered and concluded that there is positive correlation between education and acts of terror (Lee). Governments who employ terror limit the knowledge and information their soldiers, people and leaders can attain (Williams et al). This prevents them from accessing knowledge and information to the same level the rest of the civilized world can. The teachings that are provided, speak of the vile nature of the rest of the world, how corrupt the rest of the world is and how they are their protectors from the vile world. (Jenkins). Therefore, not allowing them to contemplate, think intensively and critically decide for themselves whether they wish to follow the same logic and support the same ideologies. This is how terrorist Governments negatively influence the spread of terrorism through education, they control the intake of what is learned and implement their own goals, opinions and ideologies.
The United States and other civilized nations however, uses politics to advance education, thus providing a halt to the spread of terroristic ideologies in the United States and other civilized nations. In a quote from the book “The European Union’s Policy on Counter-Terrorism” it states that they will “prevent radicalization through education and youth outreach” (European). In other studies, done by the aforementioned Alexander Lee, there is undisputable proof that the higher the education, the more critical thinking occurs and the less risk for the seeds of terror to be implemented (Lee). The civilized world understands the importance that education brings to their respective countries and power. Education is a key element to any thriving country and it can be attributed to the reason that first world countries are so advanced (European). On the other side of the spectrum, Terrorist organizations understand the damage that can be done to their power and control if true, untainted teachings and lessons were to be taught. This is how politics positively influence the spread of terrorism, which is through pure education that allows contemplation, intensive thinking and critical analysis.
Not only does politics influence terrorism through prevention programs and diversified education, it also influences terrorism by being the reason for taking action. In a verbatim statement from the White House, “America is at war with a transnational terrorist movement fueled by a radical ideology of hatred, oppression, and murder. (The White)” The terrorist goal is to divide; weaken and trample the pride of the people they attack. They do these things to innocent people for them to lose faith in the system they once trusted so dear. Terrorist intend to shake one’s faith in their respective nation, and to shake the faith of the nation itself. This leads to a lack of trust and reliance on the policies that claim to make the people safe (The White). The terrorist countries wish to accomplish this complete separation of the people and their government to make the country weak and give the illusion of superior strength in their own respective nation. This is the terrorist taking their regressive action to try and dismantle the opponent’s government.
Although terrorist receive their vim from chaos and distrust, it is the job of the civilized world to produce policies to rebuild the damage done, the trust broken and reunite under one common goal, to end the terror the terrorists seek to administer. A perfect example of the government taking action as a result of terrorism is the ongoing war on terror. This war was started through a series of strategic political maneuvers that involved most of the civilized world to fight terror at its core. The war on terror was started shortly after the events of nine eleven and was movement started in the United States by former president George W. Bush (The White). In a speech by former president George W. Bush, he stated “The attack took place on American soil, but it was an attack on the heart and soul of the civilized world. And the world has come together to fight a new and different war, the first, and we hope the only one, of the 21st century. A war against all those who seek to export terror, and a war against those governments that support or shelter them. (Bush)” This is a perfect example of Governments takings political action against terrorism. In President George W. Bush’s own words, he stated that the civilized world would not only seek out the terrorists, but the governments and political systems that seek to aid, protect and support the terrorist movement. This is tangible and undisputable proof that Political systems make advances and take action because of terrorism. This also proves that terrorist organizations take action to prevent the spread of diversifying and contradictory political ideas.
Terrorism has taken a whole new face in the civilized world, ever since the catastrophic and horrific events of September eleventh two thousand one. All of the cowardice of terrorism and heroics of the civilized world can be traced back to one common theme, politics. Terrorist act in their vile fear tactics because of a weak political structure and lack of control, while the civilized world creates counter-terrorist groups and organizations through political maneuvers. Terrorist countries teach tainted lessons that mix fact with opinion, never allowing the people to decide what they want to believe and critically decide what they think, while the Civilized teaching method allows for complete and unhindered learning to occur. Terrorist also aim to attack the civilized world’s political structures to ensure their power is unquestioned, while the civilized world’s political structures aim to ensure their people’s safety and protect the rest of the world from terrorist advances. Politics correlates to the origin of terrorism/counter-terrorism through prevention programs, diversified education and by administering regressive/progressive action.