The Origins of Terrorism and Jihad Essay

The Origins of Terrorism and Jihad Essay

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   America is at war. But who is the enemy that America is fighting? This enemy, known generally as terrorism, lives in a different world than the American superpower.

Terrorism is the child of decades of religious disputes, histories of deep national pride, and what is seen as infringement upon Islamic holy grounds. Islamic fundamentalists in the Middle East view America's presence in Saudi Arabia as blasphemous and intolerable . The preservation of face and appearance of strength are key elements in the world of the Middle East that evidence themselves in various ways. Extreme humiliation and oppression are two of the factors involved in inciting desperate people who feel shamed and weak to violent actions such as terrorism. Also, Arab nations feel that they must appear to have the superior position when taking part in foreign diplomatic negotiations. The domestic climate of an Arab nation plays a role in negotiations as well. Arab regimes must be constantly aware of their domestic situations and must be sensitive to this political climate to prevent restlessness and maintain internal stability. This world seems to be so very different than the one the United States has been living in for so long. The attacks on September 11 have brought the United States out of her own little world and into a much more complex one. Yes, America is at war, but with whom? America is at war with a much more dangerous force that does not play by conventional rules. America is in an unwelcome position; she must learn to fight a war against an enemy that she does not understand.

This essay will make an attempt to begin to understand this enemy by understanding the surrounding environment. Out of necessity, the present actions and policie...

... middle of paper ...

...o very different than the one the United States has been living in for so long. The attack on September 11, however, has brought the United States out of her own little world and into a much more complex one. Yes, America is at war, but with whom? America is at war with a much more dangerous force that does not play by conventional rules. America has been thrown into a world that she does not understand, and learning how to fight a war that she has never been a part of will be the challenge she will face.


1. Martin Kramer, September 16, 2014.

2. Harakat al-Muqawamah al-Islamiyya

3. Israel Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem

4. Nizar Qabbani  "I Am With Terrorism"

5. Reuren Paz, May 2, 2014

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