The 9/11 Attacks shook the nation, if you were not old enough to remember that fatal day in 2001 you have heard about it. But how far has our safety increased as US citizens? How is our we as Americans affected because of it? Are we truly safer? In the light of all the recent attacks, I am beginning to doubt we are.
The thought of a terrorist attack has Americans on edge since 9/11. To understand how and what the government is doing to prevent terrorism, we need to know how they define it. FBI.gov separates Terrorism into two groups International and Domestic.
“International terrorism is perpetrated by individuals and/or groups inspired by or associated with designated foreign terrorist organizations or nations.”
“Domestic terrorism is perpetrated by individuals and/or groups inspired by or associated with primarily U.S.-based movements that espouse extremist ideologies of a political, religious, social, racial or environmental nature.”
Since 9/11 there has been around 70 classified Terror attacks including but not limited to: the Capitol Hill Massacre March 26 2006, Boston Marathon Bombing April 15 2014, The Pulse Nightclub Shooting June 12 2016 and New York City Attack October 31st. These 70 events killing around 192 people combined.
There have been many cases, but the US is trying to step in to help by preventing future events like these from happening. The have implemented higher security with metal detectors and body searches at airports and federal buildings, Higher Surveillance and the started specialized groups like TSC, TSA and DHS.
TSC is the Terrorist Screening Center. Developed in 2003 “to share terrorism information with those in the counterterrorism community responsible for protecting the homeland” States FBI.gov. Also known as, Watch List this group holds the identities of those suspected of having connections with terrorist activities. They keep a watch on any suspicious activity of those individuals.
TSA is the Transportation Security Administration. Established in November of 2001. I am sure you have or have heard someone complain about this group. Airport security is highly complained about because of how extensive it is and how long it takes.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) job is to secure the nation from and threats and make it safe. DHS and its many partners have worked since 9/11 to better defend against threats, minimize risk and maximize the ability to respond and recover from attacks and disasters.
Some counter-terrorism prevention has worked because Heritage.org reported, “At least 30 terrorist plots against the U.S. have been foiled since 9/11.” Thought that is still a far cry from 70.
I believe in some aspects like planes and federal buildings we are safer, but as Americans, we still have some work to do. We will never truly be able to control all terrorism, especially if we want to keep our freedom and privacy intact. Though I do not feel like we should be on the edge of our seat 24/7 I do believe we still have to be cautious of the people and events happening around us.