NATO and Terrorism - Terrorism Essay Example

NATO and Terrorism

NATO

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The abbreviation of NATO is North Atlantic Treaty Organization. It was created to promote harmony among the member countries and throughout the world. The basic responsibilities of NATO soldiers were to remove the people whose lives were at stake near the borderline so that they could be accommodated too much safer places then those. In this regard, every member country was bound to follow all the instructions of this allied force in connection of the co-operation and peace among these countries. The history tells us that it was the unity of all the European nations, United States and Canada against the Soviet attack on their participating or friend nations.

“The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), as it often has been, is once again at the center of this debate. Today, NATO is once again a subject of concern and debate. Member states have put the organization through a major structural overhaul, but there continue to be doubts concerning its future in the absence of a threat.” [1]

NATO is said to be an allied force. One of its main responsibilities is to fight against terrorism. It is important to understand that when NATO is fighting against terrorism then terrorism may surely be affecting it in many ways.

The most favorable prove in this regard is the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center in the Washington District of the United States of America. “After the events of September 11 2001, a stunned US President George W. Bush declared that ‘night fell on a different world. There was indeed horror around much of the globe that a new and insidious precedent had been set for terror against states, making everyone vulnerable.” [2]

Significance of Issue – Terrorism

Less academic interest in the study of terrorism is one of the predictable reasons of the outrages happened on 9/11 in America. Several US research centers, institutes, and think tanks have now added this subject of terrorism to their research agendas even some have been newly established to specialize in this area and mushroomed it. In European countries, especially in Britain, the increase in interest has been seen over the years, some universities are now starting to recruit specialists in terrorism studies. They teach this subject as part of the curriculum of international relations or political science. Yet throughout European university circles there is still a firm unwillingness to recognize that studying terrorism as a weapon, whether by in the view of regimes or sub-state groups is a necessary and legitimate scholarly activity. [3]

Many standard British introductory texts on international relations and politics make no reference to the perception of terrorism, or if they do then it is only to throw it on the grounds that it is only a pejorative term for freedom fighting guerrilla warfare. It became impossible after 9/11 to deny the reality of terrorism, even for those who are the most sheltered towered academic. An estimated 3,000 civilians killed in the World Trade Center and Pentagon by the deliberate stroke of hijacked airliners. The attack was carried out by recruited people of al-Qaeda terrorist network, to pursuit the explicit aim of al-Qaeda’s leader, Osama bin Laden, and to terrorize American nation. [4]

About Terrorism

Terrorism is neither a movement nor apolitical philosophy, and it is not a synonym for political aggression in general. It is a special method or means of conflict which has been used by a broad variety of regimes and factions. It is systematic and premeditated, which aims to create an environment of extreme terror or fear. The modern word of terrorism and terror are derived from “terrere” and “deterre” Latin words, that means to cause to tremble and to frighten from respectively. The waord Terrorism and Terrorist practically did not use until the 1790s the period of the French Revolution. [5]

A key characteristic of terrorism is that it is aimed at a wider target or audience than the immediate victims. It is one of the first types of psychological warfare. The Sun Tzu an ancient Chinese strategist conveyed the core idea of the process when he wrote a book “kill one, frighten ten thousand”. Terrorism involves in attacks on symbolic and random targets which includes civilians to create an environment of extreme fear in the world. [6]

Whenever, any country or a nation is at a critical stage and it feels that someone might capture his homeland, and then he bears the courage to fight for his homeland as for the love of his country. There are special rules and principles according to which countrymen can protect their nation from enemies. An alliance was formed by the European countries and the US when they were facing attacks from the Soviet Nations. To fight for their land, they created an alliance which is called NATO.

NATO Planners

“For most of the 1990s, NATO planners and commentators have concentrated on non-Article 5 contingencies. These were the threats in the succession wars of the former Yugoslavia. However, as we were so suddenly reminded on September 11, 2001, the future of NATO is not going to be all about non-Article 5. Whether the means by which the “war on terrism” will be fought make any distinction between Article 5 and non-Article 5 planning and operations remains to be seen. Also, whether this new war will draw EU and NATO planning and decisions closer together is also not clear at this point. What is clear is that NATO as a collective defense organization still has different tasks from the EU, which has not (yet) assumed Article 5 of the Treaty of Brussels. Therefore, while the integration of NATO-EU crisis management should proceed as far as the “ideal model” described”. [7]

NATO Challenge

One of the first challenges in anti terrorist security maintenance of NATO was how to get rid of terrorist cells; those trained by the United States originally, and kept a watch by the alliance forces quiet often. Therefore in 1992, soon after the beginning of the war in Bosnia, numerous Afghan Arabs, those actually were mujahidin fighters from different Middle Eastern states journeyed to Afghanistan to put a fight against the Soviet hold. So they migrated to Bosnia hoping to help their Muslim brethren in a fight against Serbian and Croatian forces. As the underdog of the Bosnian Muslims within the Bosnian ethno religious triangle, they welcomed the assistance of the militarily of Afghan warriors. [8]

New Face of Terrorism

Subsequent activities of Al Qaeda and its allies after the terrorist attacks of Sep 11 have given vent to debate over the role and nature of international terrorism in the post Cold War globally. Al Qaeda is one of the examples of what world sees as a new form of modern international terrorist organization, which is not securely linked to any one particular nation or its patron.

Al Qaeda has proved to be a highly adaptive and remarkable international association of terrorist organizations. It has been capable of regrouping into a series of looser organizations since 11 September 2001 to launch a series of smaller terrorist attacks, one of the most spectacular of which happened in October 2002 the bombing in the island of Bali. The focus of Al Qaeda’s terrorist efforts has shifted is to smaller scale operations using new recruits in a large number. It has shown its capabilities of responding to the US campaign that brought down the Taliban command in Afghanistan, by depriving it from its major base of operations. [9]

“It would be foolish to try to assess the impact of the September 11 attacks without taking into account the responses of the USA, other major states, and the wider world. Yet it would also be wanting to ignore the ways in which al-Qaeda, the perpetrators, have changed the nature and severity of the terrosim threat itself.  Al-Qaeda, ‘the Base,’ a global terrorist network largely created by bin Laden, can justifiably be characterized as the archetype of the ‘New Terrorism’. Unlike the more traditional types of terrorist groups it is transnational in its fullest sense: it has a universalistic ideology aimed not only at forcing the USA to withdraw its forces from the Arabian peninsula and to stop supporting Israel, but also at toppling the governments of Arab and other Muslim states it accuses of collaborating with the USA and its allies, and its ultimate aim is to establish a pan-Islamic Caliphate. It is not dependent on any single regime or government for its survival and financial resources. It has a presence in at least fifty countries. Its activists are drawn from a wide range of Muslim countries, and some originate from the Muslim diaspora within Western societies”. [10]

Base of Terrorism

The United States provided weapons to most of the arrived mujahidin in Bosnia to fight against the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan during the 1980s. A large section of the Bosnian mujahidin was also closely associated with the most outstanding Afghan-Arab and Saudi Arabian born Osama Bin Laden, and his organization named Al-Qaeda. But after the Soviet forces were defeated by the mujahidin, and the withdrawal of the USSR, these forces felt neglected by the United States and annoyed when the United States military forces were entered into Saudi Arabia during the Gulf War I against Iraq in 1991. [11]

Terrorist Attacks – September 11, 2001

After the targeted attacks of Sep. 11, 2001, new phase opened in international relations, and the alliance faced new challenges with responsibilities to take united decision being multilateral organization. In fact, soon after the attacks in New York and Washington by the terrorist, NATO in which many authorized people had dismissed before their times by declaring it terminally ill alliance, promptly started to reorient its function in international security. [12]

Only after the incidence of September 11, 2001 that NATO Washington became fully awakened to the crisis generated by the support or benign political neglect of radical and extremist Muslim fighters within and outside the Balkans. Therefore, NATO adopted various actions to flush out terrorist cells all over Southeastern Europe by the end of 2001. But the new campaign against terrorism required urgent action and hard-headed realism. Records of NATO and Washington in choosing allies suggested that superior sensitivity be dedicated to the dangers of expanding local wars, and making convenient alliances with nasty political forces. So absolutist political definitions of friend and foe should not weaken action against terrorism that must be carried out by the international community. The alliance will need to look hard and take care of long term objective of its newest allies. For example they should consider Afghanistan’s Northern Alliance in the struggle against different forms of terrorism and radical Islamic violence. [13]

The September 11 attacks also effected the reputation and name of NATO. Within the 24 hours of the attack, NATO declared and proved that it was a plan to destroy the image of NATO and somewhere they have succeeded. But the real plan was to kill the soldiers of NATO. However, gradually the planes and aircrafts turned towards the WTC and bumped into the world’s highest building. Till then NATO has been trying to curb terrorism and is in fight of this fearful activity and its activists.

After the September 11, 2001 attacks, NATO has become more serious and effective in playing its complete role against terrorism. Now, the forces of NATO are removing people who are living near the terrorist camps especially in Afghanistan. The forces of NATO fear that these people might be victimized in their context so it would be better to remove and relocate them to a much safer place. NATO has been much supported and encouraged by its partners in regard of the fight against terrorism. The member countries are always present to help NATO manage voluntary camps and they also launch campaigns for the betterment of theses courageous soldiers. After these severe attacks, NATO became more terror and fear conscious and now it has started its operations in Afghanistan and the Ukraine Mediterranean area. However, besides all of this conflicts and situation, terrorism has always been a wall in the social and humanitarian services of NATO. Wherever NATO services try to spread peace and harmony, there is a bomb blast reported and same of every attack, the name and the blame comes directly on the allied force NATO.

Future of NATO

“Despite the activation of Article 5, an important political sign of unity and solidarity, the war on terrorism may accelerate some of the corrosive trends identified in this chapter. Political unity on fighting terrorism will not necessarily translate into support for NATO. Member states certainly will feel different levels of threat and display varying levels of engagement. There will be reluctance from many members to become entangled in Central Asia or the Middle East. Responses will be conducted by those countries with the capabilities to respond to the unique military challenges of counter-terrorism. Future U.S. actions may serve to alienate political support in Europe (and elsewhere). The United States is likely to continue to engage in a vast program of coalition-building, performed largely outside formal institutional arrangements. NATO will not fall apart or collapse as a result of September 11, but it may receive less attention, resources, and diplomatic energy, at precisely the time it needs more of all three”. [14]

Today, the plan, which is residing among the partner countries, comprises of the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council and NATO-Russia Council. These two comprise of the supporting countries that have been with NATO since its formation and have supported this alliance against terrorism in every positive means. Apart from its member countries, NATO is also sharing up its part with other international organizations and is taking and giving information to those organizations so that their law enforcement agencies could be proven helpful for NATO in finding fearful and wanted people. In accordance with all of the above statements it has been proved that NATO is trying its level best to curb the germ named terrorism but is continuously failing in it because the rising umber of crimes and criminals. However, a team like NATO should be within every country so that it could have a worldwide terror-curbing network.

It has been proved that what were the aims and objectives on which NATO was created. However, it is reminded again that when the US and UK colonies and European nations faced severe attacks from the sides of the Soviet Unions and Soviet nations, then they decided to create an allied force named NATO. NATO is supposed to be helpful in curbing the roots of terrorism and it is doing it as its prime duty but the greatest terrorist shock that rocked the whole world as well as NATO was the 9/11 attacks.

            “The September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States have made a smooth joint planning and coordination process even more urgent. While NATO invoked for the first time in its history its collective defense clause, it seems likely that the United States will coordinate its planned attacks on terrorist targets outside the European theater with individual allies rather than through the North Atlantic Council. As a result of the attacks, Washington will be reluctant to add more resources to Balkan peace management, at least in the short term”. [15]

Nowadays, NATO is working against terrorism in Afghanistan and is trying its level best to damage the hideouts of those jihad militants. NATO fully recognized its duties after the September 11 2001 attacks, which proved to be harmful for the works of NATO. After that they started an active participation in fight against terrorism and their first operation was chained outside Europe.

Recently, the 2006 attacks in Turkey by terrorist groups were highly condemned by NATO and at a conference held at the NAC0 the base commander declared his sympathy with the people of Turkey and strongly condemned the attitudes of the terrorist groups. The point is only that if these terrorist groups and their militants want us to move from their places then they should clearly come and fight with NATO’s allied forces, while in this way they are not opening the ways of sympathy for them but are creating an emotional of hate in the hearts and minds of the people. This conflict and war of terror between NATO and the terrorists have made the lives of people miserable. They do not care about who is living or who dies. The conflicting situation is continuously disturbing the lives of people, and is forcing them to kill themselves because of fear and terror but who cares because nobody would leave this war. Everyone should standby his conditions and all is well that end is well. People would die and last of the entire world would be free of us. Terrorist attacks in Algeria are also increasing but all are helpless in front of the terrorist forces.

Conclusion

To conclude this discussion, it is vital to understand and appreciate that NATO forces have been playing a pivotal role in eliminating terrorism from the world. They are especially working to protect the western interest in collaboration with the only supper power of the world, the United States. It must be understand to announce an increase in the security of the soldiers. In that, if anybody is severely injured or dies during the military operations, there should be special arrangements to remind those soldiers who contributed their part for the beloved country land. Moreover, these soldiers should be regarded as a part of an active and alive society so that the forth-coming generation could remind the services of the beloved ones who sacrificed their lives for the love for their country. In a sentence, NATO has been doing a great job in curtailing the terrorism and its role should be recognized and acknowledge at every platform.

Works Cited

Lenard J. Cohen, Alexander Moens, and Allen G. Sens. Praeger. NATO and European Security: Alliance Politics from the End of the Cold War to the Age of Terrorism. Westport, CT. Year: 2003

Mary Buckley and Rick Fawn. Global Responses to Terrorism: 9/11, Afghanistan and beyond. Routledge.  New York, Year: 2003

Paul B.Rich and Thomas R.Mockaitis. Grand Strategy in the War against Terrorism. Frank Cass. London. Year: 2003

[1] Lenard J. Cohen, Alexander Moens, and Allen G. Sens. Praeger. NATO and European Security: Alliance Politics from the End of the Cold War to the Age of Terrorism. Westport, CT. Year: 2003. Pg. 20

[2] Mary Buckley and Rick Fawn. Global Responses to Terrorism: 9/11, Afghanistan and beyond. Routledge.  New York, Year: 2003 Pg. 1

[3] Mary Buckley and Rick Fawn. Global Responses to Terrorism: 9/11, Afghanistan and beyond. Routledge.  New York, Year: 2003. Pg. 25

[4] Ibid

[5] Mary Buckley and Rick Fawn. Global Responses to Terrorism: 9/11, Afghanistan and beyond. Routledge.  New York, Year: 2003. Pg. 27

[6] Ibid

[7] Lenard J. Cohen, Alexander Moens, and Allen G. Sens. Praeger. NATO and European Security: Alliance Politics from the End of the Cold War to the Age of Terrorism. Westport, CT. Year: 2003. Pg. 79

[8] Lenard J. Cohen, Alexander Moens, and Allen G. Sens. Praeger. NATO and European Security: Alliance Politics from the End of the Cold War to the Age of Terrorism. Westport, CT. Year: 2003. Pg. xxiii

[9] Paul B.Rich and Thomas R.Mockaitis. Grand Strategy in the War against Terrorism. Frank Cass. London. Year: 2003. Pg. 1

[10] Mary Buckley and Rick Fawn. Global Responses to Terrorism: 9/11, Afghanistan and beyond. Routledge.  New York, Year: 2003 Pg. 33

[11] Lenard J. Cohen, Alexander Moens, and Allen G. Sens. Praeger. NATO and European Security: Alliance Politics from the End of the Cold War to the Age of Terrorism. Westport, CT. Year: 2003. Pg. xxiii

[12] Lenard J. Cohen, Alexander Moens, and Allen G. Sens. Praeger. NATO and European Security: Alliance Politics from the End of the Cold War to the Age of Terrorism. Westport, CT. Year: 2003. Pg. xxii

[13] Lenard J. Cohen, Alexander Moens, and Allen G. Sens. Praeger. NATO and European Security: Alliance Politics from the End of the Cold War to the Age of Terrorism. Westport, CT. Year: 2003. Pg. xxii

[14] Lenard J. Cohen, Alexander Moens, and Allen G. Sens. Praeger. NATO and European Security: Alliance Politics from the End of the Cold War to the Age of Terrorism. Westport, CT. Year: 2003. Pg. 30

[15] Lenard J. Cohen, Alexander Moens, and Allen G. Sens. Praeger. NATO and European Security: Alliance Politics from the End of the Cold War to the Age of Terrorism. Westport, CT. Year: 2003. Pg. 74

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