The modern world continually faces threats in the form of terrorist attacks. Terrorism can be rightly considered a constant companion of humankind, which is among the most dangerous and difficult to predict phenomena. It is a significant challenge as it takes on more and more diverse forms and threats. The effect of terrorism is most appalling: it causes massive loss of life, exerts severe psychological pressure on people, and oppresses cultural values. Since terrorism, as a phenomenon, is a conflict between two sides, the attacking party has its motives and views. This essay aims to discuss the phenomenon of terrorism through the prism of two opposing sources, including a speech by the U.S. President and a letter from Osama bin Laden.
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The consequences of terrorist acts are shocking, and the results are terrifying in their magnitude, cruelty, and inhumanity. Quite often, television reports new cases of destroyed homes and historic buildings exploded planes, and multiple corpses of innocent people. These are dire consequences, but a much more dangerous result of terrorist attacks is the prolonged effect (Sanyal 1). Inhuman bloodshed deforms public consciousness, destroys values that will take many decades to recreate. On this basis, other, even more, terrible social deformations emerge, the most prominent forms of which are religious and ethnic intolerance. In the message to the nation on November 8th, 2001, President Bush urged Americans to give up expressing chauvinism because terrorism has no nationality (Bush). This letter was an open manifestation of the cultural agenda of the early 21st century. At the same time, it is interesting to note that in his speech two days earlier, the American head of state described the ideology of terrorists in some detail, emphasizing similarity with Muslims (“This Great Nation Will Never Be Intimidated”). Nevertheless, there is still a noticeable nationalist connotation in terrorism.
In recent decades, the planet has experienced a peculiar phenomenon called globalization. As a result of migrations, free access to the World Wide Web, and traveling, the world is changing towards the unity of cultures. While some worldviews are more peaceful, others allow cultural representatives to openly declare wars and hatred of peoples. As a result, the oppressed sides refuse to accept pressure by declaring a battle. The same is true of the terrorist community of Osama Bin Laden, who lost his patience and declared war on the U.S. in 1996 (The Ladenese Epistle: Declaration of War). This letter is of incredible historical value, as it officially revealed the position of the Islamic leader towards the American government. Since then, terrorism has become more commonplace in the world.
Laden and his associates are terrorists who killed thousands of people in the 9/11 attack. Their actions cannot be justified, as the militants have appropriated the right to take other people’s lives and break their families. However, there is usually a reason behind any action. In his letter, Bin Laden stated that the factors that had prompted him to go to war were the spread of Western influence on Muslim countries. George W. Bush said on the day of the terract on the World Trade Center that the attack was intended to frighten the American population (“Statement by the President”). The U.S. president’s message was not the first open statement of position, but at a difficult moment for the world, it helped people to calm down a little and believe in their power, whose future decisions will be aimed at eliminating al-Qaeda.
Nevertheless, it is a mistake to say that the main motive of the terrorist was to intimidate the nation, as there is little effect in the long term. Osama Bin Laden’s real aim was most likely to attempt to destroy the economy of such a powerful country (Gaibulloev and Sandler 290). In the letter, he wrote about the problems of ordinary citizens drowning in thousands of dollars in debt because of deliberate mistakes by the authorities. From this point of view, the terrorist succeeded, as the consequences of the catastrophe resulted in multi-billion-dollar damage to U.S. economic policy.
Terrorism exists not only in response to economic oppression. On the contrary, people do not agree to accept the religious beliefs of others, so they express their position by force. According to official data, September 11th is closely associated with radical Islam (Gaibulloev and Sandler 275). It is not so important what religion the person who hijacked the passenger plane and sent it to the Tower had. What is more essential is that in the minds of modern Americans, as in much of the world, terrorism is closely associated with countries where political forces are governed by religion. The critical question in this regard is to determine what exactly should motivate an Islamist to commit suicide, which results in the death of hundreds of people. The answer most likely lies in the lines of the Koran calling on Muslims to fight the infidels. As a result, such a battle leads to a global political crisis and a corresponding reaction from members of the world community.
The answer to the question about the potential cessation of terrorist attacks in the world of the future calls into issue the phenomenon of human culture. History knows many wars, battles, and armed conflicts between dissenting parties. It may even seem that the desire to fight is in human blood. It is possible that globalization will contribute to the development of a society where terrorist acts will only be considered in history textbooks, but current geopolitical trends suggest the opposite.
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Bush, George. United States of America. UN, 2001. Web.
Gaibulloev, Khusrav, and Todd Sandler. “What we have learned about terrorism since 9/11.” Journal of Economic Literature, vol. 57, no. 2, 2019, pp. 275-328.
Sanyal, Shubhra. Sociological and Psychological Impact of Terrorism. Lenin Media, 2018.
“Statement by the President in His Address to the Nation.” The White House, 2001. Web.
The Ladenese Epistle: Declaration of War. 1996. Web.
“This Great Nation Will Never Be Intimidated.” Los Angeles Times, 2001. Web.