U.S. Involvement in the War on Terror
The War on Terror is tough to define. It is considered a war, but not in the traditional sense. When one thinks of war they think of enemies, a battlefield, weapons, and death. However, the war on terror is slightly different. The lines that define enemies and allies are blurred, there is no battlefield, and the weapons come in all shapes and sizes. Nonetheless, there has still been death.
Starting on September 11, 2001, the War on Terror has been waged for many years and has included many groups of people. On September 11, 2001, hijacked planes crashed in to the World Trade Center in New York City. Known as the Twin Towers, the World Trade Center is symbolic of the United State’s “economic power and military might” (Rahman). Immediately following the attacks, President Bush named Osama Bin Laden at fault and declared the War Against Terrorism. United States Congress had allocated billions of dollars and authorized President Bush to take any measures necessary (Moore). This war, however, is different from a typical war. President Bush told people to “go about their daily lives” unlike during World War II where 90% of Americans helped the war effort in some way. The war on terror is a war “without boundaries…directed against multiple enemies, not just one adversary” (Raz). The United States government has defined the war on terrorism against those who are declared “terrorists” or anyone accused of “harboring terrorists” (Rahman).
Once declared, the war on terror has led to many policies, actions, and governmental bodies to help fight the cause. The Bush administration asked states to join the fight against the terrorists and stated that they were “either with [the U.S.], or with the terrorists” (Moore). The causes of this war on terrorism, however, are unclear. The causes are being ignored which can aggravate the situation instead of helping it. Retaliations and reactions would become harsher and with the introduction of nuclear weapons, a war without boundaries could lead to a threat to the entirety of existence (Rahman). Post-September 11th, President Bush persuaded NATO to declare the attack on the U.S. an attack on all. Bush also had $40 billion to do whatever was needed to help the war effort (Moore). Immediately following the events of September 11, the U.S. invaded Afghanistan and Iraq in order to defeat Al-Qaeda. Osama Bin Laden founded al-Qaeda and he was accused of the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon (Vertigans). Another act taken by the Bush administration after 9/11 was the creation of the Department of Homeland Security. The Department of Homeland Security is responsible for responding to terrorist attacks, man-made accidents, and natural disasters. Homeland Security is focused at airports and is in charge of the screening at customs. Their main job is to make sure that potential terrorists and their weapons do not infiltrate into the United States and they gather intelligence on known terrorists outside of the U.S. (Vertigans). Congress also wrote and signed the USA Patriot Act. The USA Patriot Act stands for: Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act of 2001. In May of 2011, Barack Obama signed the PATRIOT Sunsets Extension Act of 2011, which is a four-year extension of the three key provisions in the original act. The three key provisions are roving wiretaps, searches of business records, and conducting of surveillance of individuals suspected of terrorist-related activities not linked to terrorist groups (Raz). The United States has men in Afghanistan and Iraq as well as in the home front in order to combat the terrorism that is occurring. Overseas, troops invaded Afghanistan and Iraq in order to take over their regime and create a democracy. In Iraq, the U.S. military took over Saddam Hussein and is trying to implement a democracy. This is a challenge, however, because...
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Chang, Andrew. "What 's Involved in a 'War on Terrorism '" ABC News. ABC News Network, n.d. Web. 12 Dec. 2013.
Moore, Richard K. "War on Terror: The Police State Agenda." New Dawn Magazine n.d.: n. pag. Web. .
Rahman, K. "Conflict and Security." Www.eldis.org. Institute of Policy Studies, Pakistan, 2001. Web. 11 Dec. 2013.
Raz, Guy, and Melody Joy Kramer. "Defining the War on Terror." NPR. NPR, 1 Nov. 2011. Web. 11 Dec. 2013.
Vertigans, S. "Culture, Crisis and America 's War on Terror." Crime, Media, Culture 3.2 (2007): 247-49. Print.
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