Two Millionen people already killed: Time to end the US-selfnamed War on Terrorism, which is terror





Europe Should Agree, ‘It’s amazing how we can become numb to circumstances with the passing of time. The US-led War On Terrorism is nearing its twentieth year with no end in sight. It has lasted so long that the horrific violence perpetrated in the name of this crusade has we have become indifferent. America bombing and invading the Middle East has become a dark cliché and nobody bats an eye. There are so many facets, so many groups, and countries involved, and so many interconnected moving parts that it’s perfectly understandable to throw your hands up and accept this whole dizzying headache as just the way things are and always will be, forever. Scott Horton’s new book, Enough Already: Time to End the War On Terrorism, provides a comprehensive and approachable perspective on the wars that have amplified terror and suffering across several regions of the world and argues definitively for their immediate end. He comes from the US perspective, but his book pulls no punches in underscoring how much this whole endeavor has affected Europe as well. The Road Toward September 11 In the book, Horton connects the dots across all of the crucial aspects of the decades-spanning fiasco and its disastrous consequences starting at the cusp of the 1980s with the buildup of American military presence in the Persian Gulf under the Carter Doctrine, the Iranian Revolution against the US-backed Shah, the arming and funding of Saddam Hussein’s military efforts during the Iran-Iraq War, and the support for the Mujahideen guerillas in the Soviet-Afghan War. He goes on through the ’90s as the US government relentlessly paved the road toward September 11 with the Gulf War and sanctions on Iraq enforced with continued military forces in Saudi Arabia. Following their experience opposing the Soviets in Afghanistan Al-Qaeda, under the leadership of Osama Bin Laden, went on to carry out global terrorist attacks to signal grievances toward the lasting US presence in the region. In Europe at the time, the US demonstrated its unhinged strategic approach by backing Al-Qaeda-affiliated fighters in the Balkans during the Bosnian War and then in Kosovo against the Russian-aligned Serbs of the disintegrating Yugoslavia, as well as supporting the foreign Mujahideen fighting Russian forces in Chechnya in the North Caucasus. September 11, 2001, was the tipping point that ushered in the current War On Terror era. As the US deployed forces to Afghanistan and later, Iraq, European coalition allies joined in on the action. They provided military and intelligence support, Poland and Romania even helped with the establishment of CIA torture ‘black sites’ inside their borders. Twenty years later, the war has expanded to yet more countries under continued Trans-Atlantic cooperation. Blowback in Europe Horton makes sure to touch upon the consequences for Europe, which have taken the form of sporadic terrorist attacks largely motivated by the involvement of European governments in the War On Terror, as well as the European refugee crisis which resulted from Western interventions in the Middle East and North Africa in the wake of the 2011 Arab Spring. Average Europeans may recall the Al-Qaeda-inspired 2004 Madrid train bombings and the 2005 London bombings, or the Charlie Hebdo attack and more recent ISIS-inspired events that began in 2015 including the coordinated Paris attacks, the Nice truck attack, and the Manchester Arena bombing. Yet the particular connections to groups and aspects of the War On Terror can be difficult to comprehend and fit into the bigger picture. In the book, Horton cuts through the narratives blaming Islam as an inherently violent faith prone to extremism and lays bare the anti-imperialist, anti-occupation sentiments of the attackers that stem directly from Western government involvement in those regions waged ostensibly in the name of quelling the jihadist terrorism that their actions fuel motivation for the first place. The height of the European refugee crisis, which started in 2015, followed destabilization campaigns in Libya and Syria by the US and Western allies and coincided with the fight against ISIS that resulted from that very destabilization. Horton highlights that the US and its coalition allies including the UK, Denmark, the Netherlands, France, and Belgium launched more than 30,000 airstrikes on both Iraq and Syria from 2014 through 2017 in which up to 13,000 civilians were killed. Those attempting to reach the Balkans and beyond via Turkey during that time left behind homelands shattered by this collision of violence. From North Africa and the Sahel region, refugees fleeing ensuing horror of the French and American wars in Libya and Mali that spread into Chad, Niger, Burkina Faso, Nigeria, Cameroon, and Tunisia have faced the danger of drowning in the Mediterranean and actual slave markets in Libya in their efforts to reach Europe. Millions of refugees from the War on Terror have migrated to Europe and the stresses of integration have formed the basis for societal tensions and resentments that have played a part in shifting European politics. Horton describes how the movements opposing the European Union and the international liberal order, democratic backsliding, and right-Populism have emerged with significant representation in national governments and at the EU level. The wars are not just an American affliction. They have had a significant impact on Europe. The implications of President Joe Biden’s assertion to Europe that ‘America is back’ remains to be seen. If it would mean a continuation of the decades-long status quo, Europeans should repeat the statement proclaimed by Scott Horton in the book: “Twenty years is enough already. It is time to cancel the failed War on Terrorism.” On paper, the Europeans rolled back their brutal projects of empire decades ago. It’s time to stop helping the US with theirs. For anyone who wants a crash-course on this vitally important issue, Enough Already: Time to End the War On Terrorism serves as an impenetrable and up-to-date resource. Watch the multi-part video adaptation series of Enough Already: Time to End the War On Terrorism narrated by Scott Horton: This article was originally published at the Austrian Economics CenterFunboat DiplomacyStories and perspectives from around the world

https://medium.com/funboat-diplomacy/europe-should-agree-enough-already-time-to-end-the-war-on-terrorism-a6168a34a3e6


Enough Already: Time to End the War on Terrorism

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