Ten years since 9/11
By Messenger Staff
Monday, September 12Ten years have passed since the tragic events of 9/11 in the United States. What happened on that day changed the world. Historic days in the recent past promised to usher in greater peace and stability such as the day the Berlin wall was brought down in 1989, and the day the red flag of the Soviet Union was finally lowered from over the Kremlin, 9/11 however signified the beginning of a bloody battle against world terrorism.
As a direct result of 9/11, dictatorial regimes in Iraq and Afghanistan were overthrown through military intervention. Yet solid results are still to be seen - these two countries remain a potential source of international terrorism. On the other hand, the terrorist network behind the events of 9/11, al-Qaeda, has suffered big losses from the blows dealt by the international community and the USA in particular – Osama Bin Laden was killed as well as several important leaders. Yet the war on this front is also still not over. The 10th anniversary of 9/11 was met worldwide with the utmost caution. Many officials in the USA were expressing their concern about a possible repeat of that tragic day ten years ago.
The war on terrorism has also come at a cost. In total, according to a rough estimation, the USA has spent around USD 3 trillion in combating terrorism – money that could have been spent on improving lives not only in the US but across the entire world.
While the USA was involved in anti-terrorism activities it could not attend to other pressing problems and other countries could take advantage. For instance, Russia welcomed the USA's new pre-occupation with terrorism, supporting the rhetoric of anti-terrorism and stepping up its activities in fighting with separatists on its own territory. In reality, the Kremlin used the pretext of terrorism to further strengthen its position over the post-Soviet space, quelling unrest in Chechnya, bombing Georgian territory in 2002, and then with the USA militarily overstretched around the world, attacking Georgia and occupying two of its territories in 2008.
Georgia, meanwhile, is actively participating in anti-terrorism operations around the world, first in Iraq and now in Afghanistan. This small country has the third largest contingent serving in Afghanistan. Georgia has already paid dearly for this. Ten of its soldiers lost their lives while on international missions. For the Georgian people, Georgian soldiers fighting abroad is something of a controversy. While people may believe that the country should fulfill its international obligations, Georgians feel that their country should receive some benefits in return and the world should assist Georgia in recovering its lost territories from Russia.
The tenth anniversary of 9/11 comes at a time of monumental change in the Arab world. Authoritarian regimes are collapsing but it is still unclear what will come instead. Will the Arab world move towards democratic development or will it plunge back into Islamic fundamentalism, which has proved to be a serious source of terrorism? While all eyes are drawn to the 9/11 commemorations in New York, the answer to this question might tell us whether the world will again witness such a horrific spectacle as that which transpired ten years ago.