Why The 'War On Terrorism' Really Shouldn't Be Seen As A War

Why The 'War On Terrorism' Really Shouldn't Be Seen As A War

Counter-terrorism strategies under the war framework are ineffective.

After the terrorist attacks of September 11th, 2001, a joint resolution was passed by the Senate and Congress. It provided the President with the broad brush powers to take "all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons .” Very much commissioning terrorism as war framework that is in line with the succeeding actions and policies adopted and undertaken by the Bush administration.

The passage of the USA Patriot Act, the lowering of the FISA wall, Warrants, Pen Registers, Trap and Trace, National Security Letters and Warrantless NSA Wiretapping, including PRISM, MARINA, and MAINWAY, fell in line with this model due to the curtailment of civil liberties of American citizens that these programs authorized. Many argue that these curtailments are nothing new, but rather powers of the executive that it has used countless times during periods of national emergency. This kind of shift of power and limiting of civil liberties has also been embedded into the US constitution in times of emergency. Using examples such as Lincoln’s raising an army, withdrawing money and launching a blockade without congressional approval, the declaration of war in places like Korea, Kosovo, and Libya, and FDR's interception of communications both internationally and domestically before the Pearl Harbor attack.

However, there are two main argument points for why this analogous understanding would not apply and hence terrorism as war would not fall in line. The biggest and most concerning difference is that while other instances of war would eventually end, US history had limited scope in terms of time. Thus, there is no foreseeable end to the 'war on terrorism.' In these historical examples that are often synonymized, there was an understandable and probable end. The curtailment of these civil liberties could be understood as temporary, but in the current 'war' against terrorism, there is no definitive end, as the war is not against a state or even just one concrete group.

Even if it is accepted that the security ramifications are far too high and the United States is better safe than sorry, this argument too falls flat due to the ineffective nature of these programs. Take the case of Omar Mateen, for example, whose shooting rampage at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida left 49 dead; James B. Comey, the director of the FBI, had a file on Mateen, but he also had files on hundreds of thousands of other individuals across the nation. He compared finding suspects and preventing attacks to “looking for needles in a nationwide haystack.” These far-reaching surveillance programs simply do not work, as intelligence agencies are bombarded with hundreds of thousands of possible leads and suspects; far too many, most of whom never commit a violent attack. To be able to reasonably keep an eye on all of them, analysis of these programs found no evidence that these programs have even prevented an attack.

Cover Image Credit: UX Gun / Unsplash

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I'm Sick Of Politics Taking Over The Entertainment Industry

Leave the political analysis to the reporters.

People watch the news to learn about current events and form political opinions, then they watch talk shows and other forms of entertainment to relax and enjoy the program. Mixing these two worlds is, quite frankly, annoying. I understand that there are shows such as "The Today Show," and "The View" which I enjoy very much.

These programs flirt with the lines of mixing current events and entertainment. However, what I don't want is to turn on Jimmy Kimmel and feel like I'm watching CNN.

With our country being as polarized as it has been, we should not be making it worse by having politics shoved down our throats every time we try to watch a current show or movie. This is especially true since Hollywood is overwhelmingly liberal. Even in the cable news cycles, there are options; for each political ideology for late-night television and even modern sitcom, there is only one ideology and that is LIBERAL LEFT.

This is not to say that one side is better or worse than the other, however, if the entertainment industry is attempting to take on politics too, then shouldn't there be some sort of ideological diversity?

In times of political and social hostility, some people enjoy a safe haven away from politics. It would be nice to get away from the partisan news cycles for a few hours and watch a movie, or binge your favorite sitcom, however, with Hollywood's agenda that is simply not possible anymore.

I don't understand the push for having a political undertone in everything that is aired recently. It is not relevant and it is making our country more hostile towards one and other because not only are viewers getting upset over conflicting opinions on sensitive topics but, we are also being forced to hear about it at every point of the day. The average person should be able to choose if they want to watch the news or entertainment television.

I am the type of person who watches the news daily. I enjoy knowing what is going on, however, even I need a break every now and then. The entertainment industry should stick to entertaining and leave the political analysis to the reporters.

Cover Image Credit: SNL Facebook

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10 Ridiculous Quotes From Politicians

10 silly things politicians have said.

I’m sure we have all watched the news or read an article, especially in the last couple of years, where we were shocked about what someone has said. The first thing that comes to my mind are the several crazy things said by President Trump. Anyone remember him talking about how sexy his daughter is and that he’d sleep with her if she wasn’t his daughter? I do! There are plenty of other crazy things politicians have said over the years. Let’s check them out!

1.) “I mean, you got the first mainstream African-American who is articulate and bright and clean and a nice-looking guy. I mean, that’s a storybook, man.”-Then Senator Joe Biden on then Senator Barak Obama when first running for president

2.) “We did not have a terrorist attack on our country during President Bush’s term.”-former White House Press Secretary Dana Perini

3.) “I think that gay marriage should be between a man and a woman.”-California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger

4.) “These broads are millionaires, lionized on TV and in articles about them, reveling in their status as celebrities and stalked by griefparrazies. I have never seen people enjoying their husband’s death so much.”-Conservative pundit Ann Coulter, on 9/11 widows who were critical of the Bush administration

5.) “When the President does it, that means it’s not illegal.”-Richard Nixon, in a 1977 interview with David Frost

6.) “The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.”-2012 tweet by President Donald Trump

7.) “A lot of people who go into prison straight-and when they come out, they’re gay.”-Ben Carson

8.) “Outside of the killings, DC has one of the lowest crime rates in the country.”-former mayor of Washington, D.C. Marion Barry, 1989

9.) “By integrating women into particularly military institutes, it cripples the readiness of our defense.”-Delaware GOP Senate nominee Christine O’Donnell, 1995

10.) “I would hope that when a woman goes in to a physician with a rape issue, that physician will indeed ask her about perhaps her marriage, was this pregnancy caused by normal relations in a marriage or was it truly caused by a rape.”-Idaho Senator Chuck Winder, 2012

Sometimes it’s funny to hear about the ridiculous things politicians say. However, pay close attention to exactly what they are talking about because they may be more than just stupid words. Words have meaning and the people who say them could have a huge effect on what can happen afterwards. Politician or not, you should always be careful when speaking. You could offend someone, say something you don’t mean, or cause a chain reaction that could lead to some unwanted consequences.

Cover Image Credit: The Job Radio

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