The Threat of Islamic Terrorism
With the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990's and the cold war over, the international community seemed to be on the threshold of an era of unprecedented peace and prosperity. Instead, a new series of problems was created, like ethnic conflicts, weapons proliferation, environmental problems, population growth, drug trafficking, and terrorism. Terrorism, as defined by Title 22 of the United States code, section 2656f(d), is the "pre-meditated, politically motivated violence perpetrated against noncombatant targets by subnational groups or clandestine agents, usually intended to influence and audience." Islamic terrorism is a serious problem for the United States because of the threat to national security, the safety of innocent civilians, and the foundations of democratic societies throughout the world (1997 Global Terrorism: NP).
Most of the Islamic world views the West, especially the United States, as the foremost corrupting influence on the Islamic world today.
The Hizballah have taken this further by labeling the Unites States as "the Great Satan" (Sinha. "Pakistan-The Chief Patron-Promoter of Islamic Militancy and Terrorism": NP). This growing animosity the Islamic nations feel toward the Western world has been continually demonstrated by the increase in international terrorism. However, Muslims do not view their actions as acts of terrorism, but self-defense and their religious duty. The Islamic radical movements main success or failure has been their ability to gain legitimacy from the general public or from the greater part of it in each Muslim country (Paz 1998: NP). During the past two decades, they have had enormous success with their ability to present themselves to the Arab and Muslim world as the true bearers of Islam. They appeal to the lower class due to the shared resentment of wealthy westerners while the middle class and intellectuals are drawn...