Terror is defined as a “state of intense or overwhelming fear.”
In the early 1990s, America knew the concept of terror. The buzz bombs that Hitler launched over England were designed to invoke terror. The 1983 massive bomb that killed our Marines in Beirut was a message to American “invaders.” The 1993 bombing of the World Trade Center by Islamic extremists was designed to cause widespread terror, but it mostly fizzled. Few foreign policy experts saw terror as a particularly effective geo-political weapon before 2001, when terror was a localized weapon used to control people or put fear into an opposing force.
That changed on Sept. 11, 2001.
What happens to America affects the world. Nine days after 9/11, President George W. Bush appointed Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge as the first director of the new Department of Homeland Security. The agency’s name alone served as a wake-up call to most Americans. We were an island, surrounded by friends who…