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International

Place to discuss every international news/issue.

Manav garg , Aug, 17 2016

Even now, America is not Safe


As the threat of radical Islamic terrorism continues to dominate the news, do Americans still feel safe at home? Just a third of likely voters now think the United States is safer than before the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the lowest level of confidence in nearly five years. Voters are now also just as likely to say the terrorists are winning the War on Terror as to say the United States and its allies are winning. While that’s more confidence in the United States than February’s all-time low of 19%, it’s still significantly lower than in previous years.
Since 9/11, the United States has spent $1 trillion to defend against al-Qaeda and ISIL, dirty bombs and lone wolves, bioterror and cyberterror. Has it worked?

As the threat of radical Islamic terrorism continues to dominate the news, do Americans still feel safe at home? Just a third of likely voters now think the United States is safer than before the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, the lowest level of confidence in nearly five years. Voters are now also just as likely to say the terrorists are winning the War on Terror as to say the United States and its allies are winning. While that’s more confidence in the United States than February’s all-time low of 19%, it’s still significantly lower than in previous years. Since 9/11, the United States has spent $1 trillion to defend against al-Qaeda and ISIL, dirty bombs and lone wolves, bioterror and cyberterror. Has it worked?

Alice , Aug, 17 2016


I believe our fear of terrorism should be held in proportion with all of the other things that may kill us in any given day. Every year just in the U.S. 500,000 die from smoking, 300,000 die from obesity, 250,000 die from medical errors, 90,000 die from abusing alcohol, 30,000 die from gun violence, and 30,000 die from car accidents. Including 9/11, cumulative U.S. deaths from terrorists represent a minuscule fraction of these other causes. Some years, we have even been more likely to be shot by a toddler or crushed by furniture. Of course losing our sense of proportion is the whole point of terrorism. However doing so following 9/11 led us to a failed war in Iraq that was justified with false information obtained using torture; a war that killed 4,491 U.S. soldiers and 500,000 Iraqi civilians, and cost over $2 trillion. Losing a sense of proportion when responding to a threat can inflict magnitudes of harm and suffering greater than the inciting incident.

I believe our fear of terrorism should be held in proportion with all of the other things that may kill us in any given day. Every year just in the U.S. 500,000 die from smoking, 300,000 die from obesity, 250,000 die from medical errors, 90,000 die from abusing alcohol, 30,000 die from gun violence,


Albert , Jack of none but master of all Aug, 17 2016


Of course, we are safer for reasons that have absolutely nothing to do with a trillion dollars wasted on security theatre but a lot with technical and medical progress and something less with the general trend of violent crime to go down, for reasons not fully understood. The best illustrative vignettes of these are the cases where the theatrical nature of the security theatre did get exposed, with airports being an obvious example. The first generation of porn machines apparently gave some indication of male and female assets, but could not reliably detect even a full-size service pistol carried in an open holster without the slightest attempt at concealment, since the machines would only look from front and back and didn't get a good view from the side. There also was a fraud case where someone sold supposedly fully trained bomb sniffing dogs to some government agency, and it turned out they were merely trained to put their noses on the ground, but never got any training identifying explosives.

Of course, we are safer for reasons that have absolutely nothing to do with a trillion dollars wasted on security theatre but a lot with technical and medical progress and something less with the general trend of violent crime to go down, for reasons not fully understood. The best illustrative vigne


Mayank , Aug, 17 2016


US's intelligence professionals and homeland security officials have done a great job in keeping us safe. Other than lone wolves amassing arsenals from the NRA there isn't much of a threat anymore. However the media has absolutely failed in its responsibility. Their emphasis on sensationalism and fear mongering has created this vision of a dystopian America beset by terror and shadows.

US's intelligence professionals and homeland security officials have done a great job in keeping us safe. Other than lone wolves amassing arsenals from the NRA there isn't much of a threat anymore. However the media has absolutely failed in its responsibility. Their emphasis on sensationalism and fe


Vijay Arur , Aug, 17 2016


It's impossible to stop all terrorist attacks. They will happen and when they do we need the guts to handle it reasonably, as the Brits did during the blitz, as the Israelis do habitually. The purpose of terrorism is to terrorise. We need to take that away from them. We need to protect, and accept among us, those who have been really persecuted in the areas of the world most horribly affected by IS, et al. The refugees are just people, just people, the vast, vast, majority, hairdressers and sheetmetal workers, students, parents. They just want a life, what you and I want. When we take them in we certainly accept more risk, but it's the right thing to do. By being so pitifully afraid we give the terrorists their victory. But we need to take a stand here and that doesn't mean hiding in the basement or turning our back on those fleeing obscene violence and upheaval. It means not submitting to terror. It means standing up and saying we're not going to be intimidated. It means not playing into their hands. It means sticking to our values. It means continuing to live our lives until this atrocious thing plays itself out.

It's impossible to stop all terrorist attacks. They will happen and when they do we need the guts to handle it reasonably, as the Brits did during the blitz, as the Israelis do habitually. The purpose of terrorism is to terrorise. We need to take that away from them. We need to protect, and accept a


John , Aug, 17 2016


Classic counterterrorism is inadequate for stopping individual Muslim terrorists like Omar Mateen who was able to murder 49 people at a nightclub in Orlando or closely related duos like the Tsarnaev brothers in Boston or the husband and wife team who carried out the San Bernardino terrorist attack which took the lives of 14 people. Even the standard technique of planting informants into mosques, deeply opposed by the Islamic lobby in the United States, fails when individuals decide to act alone or only trust their wives or brothers to be in on the plot with them. If an individual Islamic terrorist fails to let his plans slip, either online or to an FBI informant, stopping him can be extremely difficult if not entirely impossible without a stroke of luck.

Classic counterterrorism is inadequate for stopping individual Muslim terrorists like Omar Mateen who was able to murder 49 people at a nightclub in Orlando or closely related duos like the Tsarnaev brothers in Boston or the husband and wife team who carried out the San Bernardino terrorist attack w