War on terrorism
The phrase war on terrorism is used to justify a wide variety of actions in many countries. In Israel it is used to justify bombing apartment buildings in Gaza. In Russia it has been used to justify oppressive measures in Chechnya. In Canada it has been used to justify oppressive search measures contrary to privacy laws. In the United States it specifically refers to the perpetual, global War on terrorism seemingly invented by US Deputy Secretary of Defense Paul Wolfowitz as a rhetorical device to justify the (eventual) 2003 invasion of Iraq by The Coalition, another fictional construct.
This perpetual war has been promulgated by U.S. President George W. Bush as a reaction to the events of September 11, 2001, which incorporates or replaces the long-standing permanent failure of the "war on drugs" which, likewise, has many meanings in different countries.
"The Pentagon has assigned the task of tracking down and eliminating Osama bin Laden, Saddam Hussein and other high-profile targets to Army Lt. Gen. William G. "Jerry" Boykin who sees the war on terrorism as a clash between Judeo-Christian values and Satan."
The abbreviation War on terror was also used by President Bush, leading some to observe that it is impossible to carry out what is defined as "war" against an abstract noun. When various members of Monty Python began to make fun of this term and point out its implications in pieces published in prominent UK newspapers, the term disappeared from official coverage. Also, seemingly, it has the unfortunate resonance of sounding like a "war on Terra", that is, on Earth itself. In sympathy with this, some ecotage promoters began to call themselves terrists, in part to make fun of Bush's Texas accent, in which this term is indistinguishable from "terrorist".
This does not, however, modify the fundamental insensibility of it, nor serve to hold allies together. While Canada and Germany were full participants in the 2001 invasion of Afghanistan, for instance, they were steadfast opponents of invading Iraq - Canadian naval forces even refused to cooperate with US forces when the former, stationed in the Gulf, were asked to interdict Iraqi traffic during the war. Canada did not join "The Coalition," whatever that is, nor did it interpret the war on terrorism as having anything to do with an attack on Iraq - nor for that matter Syria or Iran.
In another view  "Reviewing the background to US sponsored Argentinian and Israeli terrorism reveals how the fictional "war on terror" is just another pretext for the pillage of Latin America by the US government and its favoured multinational corporations."
Consistent with the duplicitous nature of the Junior Bush Regime, a United Nations commissioned study, the Arab Human Development Report 2003 finds that the "war on terrorism" has actually pushed radical political groups to seek change by violence.  The "war on terrorism" is actually creating terrorism, not reducing it.
"With the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the U.S. lost the pretext of 'communism' for its intervention in Latin America and the Caribbean - other than Cuba - and it quickly assumed the 'war on drugs' as an excuse for military presence. And after 9/11, the pretext for intervention became the 'war on terrorism', notes long-time independent researcher and Latin America expert GeorgeAnn Potter, a professor at the Catholic University of Bolivia. 
OAKLAND, CA - August 26, 2003 - What do the "war on terrorism" and "free trade" have in common? According to a new report by Food First/Institute for Food and Development Policy, they are the two formidable pillars of U.S. foreign policy, custom-fit to help privatize the world's resources for its corporations and a matter of growing concern with the upcoming World Trade Organization (WTO) Ministerial in Cancun, Mexico.,
Also see Food First article The War On Terrorism, Labor And Democratic Rights published June 29, 2002.
Other Related SourceWatch Resources
- Americans for Victory Over Terrorism
- Bush doctrine
- Department of Homeland Security
- Funding terrorism
- Gilmore Commission
- Homeland defense
- Homeland security
- Illegal immigration
- Loose Cannon Pentagon
- Military-industrial complex
- National Threat Assessment
- Oklahoma City National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism
- Patterns of Global Terrorism 2001
- Proactive Preemptive Operations Group
- Public Report on the Vice President's Task Force on Combatting Terrorism
- Report of the National Commission on Terrorism
- Terrorism as propaganda
- Terrorism Information Awareness
- Terrorist cult
- weapons of mass deception
- weapons of mass destruction
- weapons of mass destruction investigation
- Background and Threat Assessments catalogued at the Federation of American Scientists, Intelligence Resource Program
An internet search specific to "war on terrorism" will result in an endless listing of sources, opinions, and articles, some of which are listed below.
U.S. Government-Related Links
- The War on Terrorism, CIA, Director of Central Intelligence George J. Tenet's online page. Includes numerous CIA articles and links.
- America Responds, FirstGov.gov, The U.S. Government's Official Web Portal.
- War on Terrorism, Federal Bureau of Investigation/FBI online page.
- Defend America, U.S. Department of Defense News About the War on Terrorism.
- "What is the War on Terrorism?", answered by White House (.gov) FAQ
- "National Security", White House online page from President George W. Bush.
- Allison R. Hayward, Daniel Kelly, and Michael F. Williams, The War on Terrorism and the Commander in Chief Clause: Delegation of the President's Command Authority, Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies. National Security White Papers, 2002.
- The Rule of Law: War on Terrorism, U.S. Department of State International Information Programs.
- Global War on Terrorism, USAF Counterproliferation Center, U.S. Department of the Air Force.
- War on Terrorism: U.S. Gov Info and Resources, About.com.
- How Should the United States Respond to Terrorism? (video and transcript), Cato Institute, November 27, 2000. Featuring Anthony H. Cordesman, Center for Strategic and International Studies; John Parachini, Monterey Institute of International Studies; Bruce Hoffman, RAND Corporation; Ivan Eland, Cato Institute.
- Letter to President George Walker Bush from The Project for the New American Century, September 20, 2001.
- Narco News 2001: War on Terrorism: a Recipe for Disaster. Washington and the U.S. Press Declare War (Again) without Defining the Enemy, Narco.News.com, September 28, 2001.
- John Pilger, There is no war on terrorism. If there was, the SAS would be storming the beaches of Florida, New Statesman (London), October 29, 2001.
- Jim Lobe and Lora Lumpe, An Enron War On Terrorism, CommonDreams.org, February 12, 2002.
- Pratrap Chatterjee, The War on Terrorism's Gravy Train. Cheney's Former Company Wins Afghanistan War Contracts, CorpWatch.org, May 2, 2002.
- Michel Chossudovsky, Hidden Agenda behind the "War on Terrorism": US Bombing of Afghanistan restores Trade in Narcotics, Centre for Research on Globalisation, May 20, 2002.
- Charting the War on Terrorism, Amnesty Now: "From Australia to Zimbabwe, using new laws and old-fashioned brute force, governments are sacrificing human rights on the altar of antiterrorism."
- Special Coverage: War on Terrorism, Findlaw.com. Includes up-to-date news articles and other media links.
- America's War Against Terrorism, University of Michigan Documents Center.
- War Against Terror, CNN.com Specials.
- America's War on Terrorism, Federation of American Scientists. Includes links and news articles.
- War on Terrorism, NewsMax.com; includes "World's Most Wanted" State Sponsors of Terrorism.
- Alternative Resources on the U.S. "War on Terrorism", "Alternative Resources on the U.S. "War Against Terrorism", International Responsibilities Task Force of the American Library Association's Social Responsibilities Round Table.
- Jane's Analysis: War on Terrorism, Janes.com.
- War on Terrorism, GuerillaNewsNetwork.
- War on Terrorism, PollingReport.com by Polling Report, Inc..
- The New War, "The War on Terrorism: The First War of the 21st Century", StrategyPage.com.
- Global SpecOps, Operation Enduring Freedom Terrorism Portal with links to numerous articles.
- The War on Terror, American Enterprise Institute's up-to-date articles.
- War on Terrorism, TerrorismFiles.org's up-to-date articles.
- War on Terrorism, The Atlantic Monthly articles with links. Robert Kaplan, Supremacy by Stealth, July/August 2003.
- Drug Policy News: War on Terrorism Increasingly Used in War on Drugs, Drug Policy Alliance, July 22, 2003.
- Drug Policy News: Using Terrorism Fears to Boost the Drug War, Drug Policy Alliance, August 27, 2003.
- Karel Glastra van Loon and Jan Marijnissen, [http://www.spectrezine.org/war/humanitarian.htm The Doctrine of
Humanitarian War], spectrezine.org, no date: "Although the 'fight against evil' has found a new theatre in Iraq, it does not seem likely that the situation in Bosnia, Serbia, Kosovo or Afghanistan will substantially improve. The negative consequences of these 'rightful wars' threaten to become bigger than the positive effects that provided the pretext for action in the first place. ... They tend to form a fruitful base for extremism and terrorism. In the meanwhile the war industry may become the only economic sector that can keep showing positive growth figures."
- 2 May 2002: "Poking the hornets' nest is ill-advised" by Ivan Eland, USA Today. Re "provoking terrorist groups."
- 17 March 2003: "Endgame", a Buzzflash Editorial: "It's the endgame of a mad, politically calculated war."
- 26 August 2003: "Bush, Speaking to Veterans, Says Iraq May Not Be Last Strike" by David Stout, The New York Times: "President Bush defended his policy on Iraq today, declaring that the United States had struck a blow against terrorism in overthrowing the government of Saddam Hussein. And Mr. Bush said the United States might carry out other pre-emptive strikes."
- 28 August 2003: "US troops quit Saudi Arabia" filed by John R. Bradley in Jeddah, news.telegraph.co.uk: "America no longer needs Saudi Arabia militarily and oil from Iraq and the Caspian Sea will eventually reduce Saudi influence in Opec. Some in the Bush administration want more co-operation from the House of Saud in the war on terrorism.... The FBI and the US Internal Revenue Service are going to Saudi Arabia to start a joint US-Saudi effort to trace terrorist financing there."
- 28 August 2003: "Iraq set to swallow up countless billions as costs soar, US admits" by Suzanne Goldenberg in Washington and Jamie Wilson in Baghdad, The Guardian .
- 28 Sep 2003: Feds Use Terror Law in Unrelated Cases, Atlanta Journal-Constitution
- 20 October 2003: "The 'war on terror' is being used as an excuse to further US energy interests in the Caspian", by Lutz Kleveman, The Guardian
- 21 November 2003: "Bush Says Turkey New Front in 'War on Terror'" by Brian Williams, Reuters.
- 2 December 2003: "It's the Incompetence, Stupid!", Buzzflash editorial.
- 7 December 2003: "From Tommy R. Franks, a doomsday scenario" by Robyn E. Blumner, St. Petersberg Times.
- 10 December 2003: "Professors publish report on terrorism" by Laura Vilim, The Observer (Notre Dame).
- 15 December 2003: "Dissent in the Bunker. Newt Gingrich, a quiet Rumsfeld confidant, thinks the U.S. went 'off a cliff' in Iraq" by John Barry and Evan Thomas, Newsweek.