Global War on Terrorism

The September 11, 2001, attacks on the United States focused the country and its leadership on the nature of terrorism and its real threat to American interests. The very label “Global War on Terrorism” became an embedded element of U.S. policy and the common lexicon for years. Subsequent large-scale terrorism against Spain, the United Kingdom, India, and a host of other nations reinforced a common understanding of the threat over the next decade. This entry discusses global terrorism from the Cold War era to the present, including the September 11, 2001, attacks, with a focus on U.S. policy.

Often lost in the immediate aftermath of September 11, 2001, is the lengthy history of terrorism in the modern age, particularly after World War II. Although relatively rare ...

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