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America’s War On Terrorism Essay

2447 words - 10 pages

America’s War on Terrorism

The world has been changed forever since the tragic attack on September 11, 2001. An observer described the atrocity by saying, "It just went 'bam,' like a bomb went off. It was like holy hell (CNN 1). " The new world will be different from what any American has known before. A new war has arisen, not against a foreign country or a major region of the world, but rather against a select group of people who have the capabilities to destroy the lives of so many. The war against terrorism which the United States is now forced to wage will not be an easily won battle. This war will not be fought solely on scattered battlefields in certain countries. It will instead permeate through every aspect of life as we know it. "The attack of September 11 will be the precipitating moment of a new kind of war that will define a new century. This war will be fought in shadows, and the adversary will continue to target the innocent and defenseless ("The Terrorism Research Center"). " The unconventional methods of terrorism make these terrorists the first formidable opponent the United States has faced in years, since the ending of the Cold War.

Due to its victory in the Cold War, the United States is now the last remaining superpower in the world, and along with that supremacy comes an inherent responsibility. The responsibility of a superpower can be interpreted in two distinctly different ways. One of these is for a country to become semi-isolationist. The other is the opposite, in the sense that it deals with a country imposing its authority on other countries, thus not being in any way isolationist. Both of theses have their benefits while at the same time, their disadvantages.

The first possible responsibility is that a superpower can allow all other nations to be autonomous and not impose its authority outside of its own borders. It respects less developed nations' independence. In this way, the superpower becomes somewhat isolationist, because a superpower usually has the ability to be self-reliant if needs be. Indeed, it follows that if the superpower does in fact simply preside over itself, it will eventually become isolationist. A major problem with this approach is that it may cause a superpower to consume its resources, so then when it attempts to regain its authority over the rest of the world after being isolationist for so long and now having limited resources, it is no longer an intimidating force, and thus loses its superpower supremacy. The original empire of China was technologically superior to the rest of the world at that time, but it was isolationist and eventually overtaken as the rest of the world advanced (Further information located in Encarta Encyclopedia for Windows).

The second approach that a superpower may believe its responsibility to be is to aid those countries that are less developed by inflicting their rule over such countries. Aiding countries can be achieved in many ways. There can...

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