Written by Leanna Westerhof. Media by Kayla Morton.
The War on Terror is a familiar phrase since the attacks of 9/11 when Al-Qaeda sent the World Trade Center crashing to the ground. The War on Terror was the United States’ response to the attack on our homeland. We were devastated, terrified and angry that these Islam terrorists dared to do such a thing and so we retaliated. We hunted Al-Qaeda and eventually this led us to Iraq and Afghanistan in search of Saddam Hussein and to restore democracy in Afghanistan. This war has been called a “war without boundaries.” Why? Because this war has changed what the word “war” means. War is traditional, it usually has an enemy and a battleground. However, in this war our enemies are hidden and are numerous, the battleground is everywhere, though recently it was fought in Europe with the recent attacks on Paris and Brussels.
On Friday, November 15, 2015, Paris was attacked by terrorists. These attacks left 113 people dead and hundreds more wounded by bomb blasts and shootings happening at multiple sights. Recently, on March 22, Brussels was attacked by terrorists as well. In this attack, at least 31 people were killed when there were two explosions at the Brussels airport and metro station with more than 271 people wounded. ISIS has taken responsibility for these attacks. However, even if we only hear about the attacks that have been successful there have been many failed attempts as well, the attempts that we never hear about.
The real question is should we be involved and to what extent? I understand that after 9/11 people were scared, shocked and wanted answers. We found the ones we held responsible, but now we are still entrenched in a war that has gone on for the majority of our lives. Our generation doesn’t remember not being at war. Is that what our lives have become? Are we desensitized to war and news about shootings, and bombings and other terrible acts? During World War II everyone was instructed to help out with the war effort. Women, men and children helped out in any way that they could and nowadays we go about our daily lives as if we aren’t at war and the only people who seem to truly care are the ones who have loved ones in the military. War is different nowadays and we need to evaluate where we want to stand. Should we focus on our own borders and the problems we have here in the United States? Should we help our fellow humans with the monstrosities that they are facing in Europe and the Middle East?
I believe the government has a responsibility to the people of the United States to keep its citizens safe. With the transition that we are facing right now with the upcoming elections and the economic situation we find ourselves in, it is a period where I think we should offer help in supplies and intelligence but we should keep our troops and people out of it. This problem isn’t going to go away anytime soon and I do think that the nations need to be a united front for the cause of justice. But maybe the United States shouldn’t be the one leading the charge.