Name of the of the Concerned Professor Subject 1 August 2011 Is the War on Terrorism a Lost Cause? The War on terror initiated by the Bush administration is an issue that tends to solicit a mixed response from Americans. Instinctively, people do harbor a gut feeling that the cause for which this war is being waged is just and right…
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It is imperative, before coming to a valid conclusion, to take an appraisal of a few facts. When it comes to the loss of manpower and resources, the statistics pertaining to the War on terror are disheartening. Since 2 January 2009, nearly 4,219 US army personnel have lost life in Iraq (Huffpost World 1). As per the National Priorities Project, roughly speaking, till now, $ 585 Billion have been spent by America on this war (Huffpost World 1). The sunny side of the issue is that since 9/11, primarily attributed to the War on terror, no major terrorist strike has taken place in the United States. First and foremost, the War on terror is fundamentally a great success because it is being waged to support a just and moral cause. In his article published in ‘International Affairs’, Anthony Burke declares the War on terror to be a just war preferable to an ethical but impotent peace (Burke 330). It is true that America is an economic and capitalist success. Yet, it is also true that Americans do have the capacity to stand for and fight for the values and morals that they essentially uphold and believe in. There is no denying the fact that terrorism is a sinister evil that intends to destroy and demolish the very fundamentals of the contemporary civilized world. The people who attacked the American lives and property on 9/11 were evil people and what they did do deserves to be checked and attacked. So from a strictly moralistic perspective, any act and war initiated and carried on to annihilate terrorism is just and positive, irrespective of the mixed results and costs it comes with. This war needs to be evaluated on the basis of the extent to which it has diluted the jihadist networks. The War on terror is somewhat different from the conventional wars in the sense that considering the deceptively undefined and segregated nature of the pursued enemy, it is not bound to have clear losers and winners. The War on Terror is not primarily about winning, but about achieving the desirable tactical and strategic objectives, which it certainly has succeeded in achieving (Martin 15). The jihadist and terrorist elements affiliated to Al Qaeda have safe havens in Iraq, Afghanistan and other Middle East nations. If left to themselves, they do have the potential to regroup and plan and to execute terrorist attacks against the US and other nations from these safe havens. Isn’t the elimination of Osama Bin Laden, the poster boy of international terrorism, by US forces in Pakistan and the dilution of many top Al Qaeda terrorists by the American forces in varied parts of the world, a sign of great success (Partlow 2)? What the War of terror has done and is doing it to keep the jihadist elements flustered and harassed in their safe heavens, while significantly eliminating their cadre and top leadership. The continuation of the War on terror is also essential to protect and safeguard the finite oil resources of the world. Many say that America is fighting this war to capture oil (The Debate 1). Even if this aspersion is true, what is wrong with it? Oil is the lifeblood of not only the American economy, but also of most of the other developed and developing economies. One could definitely imagine the havoc that will be let lose, if the international community allows the jihadist elements a complete sway over this region rich in oil wealth. It is also clear what these terrorist groups will do with the wealth amassed from
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