September 11 2021 — Has the U.S. war on terror made the world a safer place? Former President Bush says he’s “comfortable” with the decisions he made after 9/11. Not everyone is convinced. Follow us on Twitter: @INTEL_TODAY
RELATED POST: Afghanistan — America’s war ends in humiliating debacle
Colin Powell’s former chief of staff Lawrence Wilkerson disagrees with the idea that the U.S. is safer now than 20 years ago, saying “I think we’ve created more terrorists in the world.”
“Rumsfeld asked the good question. ‘Tell me how we are winning if every time we kill one of them, we create ten more?’ And that is what we have done.”
What do you think? Has the U.S. war on terror made the world a safer place?
Flashback — On September 9, 2001, Ahmad Shah Massoud was assassinated by two al-Qaeda assassins during a suicide bombing. The operation had been ordered personally by the al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden himself as a prelude to the 9/11 attacks.
The killers claimed to be Belgian journalists. In fact, they transited through the municipality of Molenbeek in Bruxelles and they used stolen Belgian passports.
Fast forward — This week, the trial of the 2015 Paris terror attacks has begun. The mastermind of both the Paris and Brussels terror attacks is widely believed to be Oussama Atar, a Belgian citizen who grew up in Molenbeek.
In a piece titled “The Islamic State of Molenbeek” published by the New York Times on April 11 2016, Roger Cohen — a former journalist who worked for Reuters in Brussels — wrote:
“A jihadi loves a vacuum, as Syria demonstrates. Belgium as a state, and Belgium as the heart of the European Union are as close to a vacuum as Europe offers these days. (…) There is a vacuum. Vacuums are dangerous.”
Twenty years ago, Molenbeek was a sanctuary for jihadists. Nothing has changed. If anything, Molenbeek is more dangerous than ever.
In Molenbeek, the madrassas and the radical clerics have already recruited and trained the next generation of terrorists.
America has been fighting in Afghanistan for 20 years. It has spent more than $2 trillions on the war.
In the end, they only succeeded to provide a psychological and morale boost to extremists already here. The ‘war on terror’ may be over in Washington, but here in Brussels, it is only the beginning.
What We’ve Lost: A September 11th Special
Mehdi Hasan explores all that was lost on September 11th and the twenty years since, including how the ensuing domestic and foreign policy decisions reshaped global relations.
WHAT TO DO? A GLOBAL STRATEGY — The National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States
20 Years Ago — 9/11 and the Rumsfeld Test