(Name of Student)
Should the attacks on 9/11 have been prevented?
The attack on 9/11 came as a shock but was not a surprise (National Commission, 2004). Based on this fact, we can conclude that with proper preparation, the attack would have been prevented. Before the attack on the world trade center on September 11th, there has been multiple attacks targeting the center. There were also increased attacks throughout America by Islamist extremists. Following the increased threat and multiple efforts to kill Americans in mass killings, the nation should have been prepared for a large scale attack. This is following a direct threat by Bin Laden himself to bring havoc on the American soil (National Commission, 2004). Following the threat, the national defense team should have taken measures to uncover any people associated with the extremists. Using the national intelligence and previous history with the Islamic extremists, they should have determined the threat eminent. With proper preparation and intelligence, the attack on the world trade center would have been prevented.
The U.S. intelligence following reports intercepted broke up some al Qaeda cells. This was one of the major errors that were made. The intelligence unit targeted followers instead of following their leader Bin Laden. Despite breaking up some of the cells, the intelligence failed to penetrate to their core leader and this resulted in the execution of the terror attacks. Another error that was made was that the intelligence unit did not make a connection when Moussaoui was arrested when trying to learn how to pilot big fuel jets. When the officers failed to make the connection, they failed to predict that the project of piloting fuel jets was a part of the terror attack (Eichenwald, 2012). Another error that was made was that by them, the airways did not have a contingency plan on suicide hijacking. When the 19 hijackers penetrated the airport security and hijacked four planes, the crew had no plan to defend themselves.
What should have been done to prevent these attacks?
The intelligence unit should have been more persistent in their interpretation of the attacks and taken the threats with more weight. In my opinion, the U.S. intelligence should have closely monitored their borders following smaller scale attacks and the threats (Eichenwald, 2012). Many Islamic extremists accessed the country through the airports and the 19 hijackers gained access to the four flights by beating the airport security. Through heightened security measures, the 19 hijackers would have been arrested at the airport and thus the attack would not have been executed. Also, the U.S. intelligence should have focused on targeting the core of Bin Laden’s organization rather than targeting extremist who was already incarcerated. Airplanes should have been equipped with security strategies to help the crew defend themselves in case of any incidence.
Since the terror attacks carried out on the American soil, many lessons can be drawn from various responses that were made. The first lesson is to avoid having disgruntled immigrants on the American soil. This can be achieved by improving community relations. This will oversee that immigrant from marginalized communities are well integrated within the community and this will ensure there are no underground terrorism movements. Another lesson is that it is important to involve the community in bringing terrorists to justice (Hurlburt & Lamond, 2011). The police force cannot cover every person and thus, community policing should be encouraged. Subsequent attempts to carry out terror attacks on America were stopped in time due to people reporting unusual behavior. Also, a country should have a fair and transparent justice system that can be used to try terrorist attacks. A nation should also place more responses in programs that can help people defend themselves from terrorists.
Eichenwald, K. (2012). The Deafness before the Storm. New York Times. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/11/opinion/the-bush-white-house-was-deaf-to-9-11-warnings.html?_r=0
Hurlburt, H & Lamond, J. (2011). Lesson in Counterterrorism Ten Years After 9/11: What Works and What Doesn’t. http://spi.typepad.com/files/lessons-in-counterterrorism-ten-years-after-9-11.pdf
National Commission. (2004). The 9/11 Commission Report: Final Report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States. http://govinfo.library.unt.edu/911/report/911Report_Exec.htm