Recent attacks on US landmarks tell us a rather sad story: no one is safe. Similar atrocities in the Balkans, Iraq and Palestine, to only name a few places, tell us a similar sad story: lives can easily perish under any form of devastation.
While terrorists should never go unpunished, the world is yet to address the very important question as to why some normal people decide to become wild terrorists. Evidently, some have just lost their minds. They might have been blinded by their political convictions or have simply been the victims of false interpretations of their own holy scriptures. Some others, however, must have had some genuine, real and objective grievances.
An equally important investigation is how to find ways to effectively deal with state terrorism and power politics. While some rogue states have made the grave error of sponsoring international terrorism, some well-defined super powers have allowed themselves, under the notions of democracy and human rights, to supervise other nations and, in the process, exterminate a large number of innocent civilians. In fact, political scientists are not even sure as to whether democracy and human rights are compatible with the construction of huge armies and the piling up of unlimited stocks of weapons of mass destruction.
There is yet another problem. Recent events in the US may well drag the world into another cycle of terrorism, war and power politics. Political scientists have long maintained that poor economic performance frequently brings international conflict in its wake. They argue that ‘an incumbent leader with an unfavorable economic performance record may initiate a conflict to force the learning of his conflict leadership abilities and thus salvage, with some probability, his reelection’.
In light of the Gulf War experiment, which eventually ended the 1990-91 US economic recession, and given the current bad shape of the world economy, such a proposition should never be underestimated.