Terrorism in the United States: Pre and Post 9/11
Background of the Study:
Since the end of the great wars – World War I, II and the Cold War, the United States of America has been considered the most powerful nation in the world. It became the role model of many developing nations, and supported advocacies that would usher peace and democracy in the 21st century. Its military power is unrivalled and allowed the country to intervene in many critical situations around the globe. Many considered the US a fortress that cannot be threatened and even if there were threats, the US can easily put a stop on it even before these threats can be put into action. However, on September 11, 2001, America’s invincible front had been shattered and brought fear back to the people who thought they were safe in the US. International terrorists affiliated to the Al Qaeda had managed to bypass the ‘flawless’ American security network and brought down the iconic World Trade Center. Immediately after the tragedy, many questions have immediately been raised with regards to the possible complacency of the American government over the threat of terrorism and what can be done to prevent it.
Statement of the Problem:
It is undeniable that America’s political, economic, social and military prowress has no equal around the globe and even if it is threatened, the US would definitely be able to stand back and fight back. However, it is a question as to whether or not the US became too cocky over their supposed invincibility that permitted 9/11 to occur or there were other factors that caused 9/11 to have a significant impact in the country. It is also a question if the 9/11 attack did change America despite America’s power even in peacetime. With these points in mind, the main problems this study would aim to solve are “why was the US somehow immune from international terrorism before 9/11 and how much did 9/11 change America’s mindset and policies to prevent terrorism?”
This study would argue that the reason why America was safe from international terrorism prior to 9/11 was due to the possibility of a full American assault should any party try to threaten America and America’s active presence around the globe had served as a deterrent for possible threats. However, when the vulnerabilities of their policies have been seen after 9/11, the country had immediately reformed many of its policies and programs to ensure that terrorism would be prevented from spreading chaos in the country.
Significance of the Study:
The events of 9/11 has greatly shook the entire globe, especially the US as it revealed that despite the country’s overall influence, it still fell victim to terrorism. This study would enable the researcher to understand why terrorism had only made its impact in the US in 9/11 and determine if there were efforts done prior to 9/11 that the US or other countries should consider to prevent the onset of terrorism.
In order to complete this study and answer the research questions raised, the researcher would be using data coming from books, journal articles, news articles and independent reports from various organizations and the US government. If there is time, this researcher would also use data from surveys and interviews to get the pulse of the public with their perceptions on Pre and Post-9/11 America.
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Terrorism. Santa Monica: RAND Corporation.
Pearlstein, D. (2014). Prosecuting a Pre-9/11 Terrorist: The Legal Limits of Military
Commissions. The Federalist , 2 (1), 145-155.