ON SEPTEMBER 19, 2001, CIA officers collected cardboard packing containers crammed with $3 million in nonsequential $100 payments to purchase off Afghan warlords, starting America’s martial response to the 9/11 assaults.
A day later, President George W. Bush stood earlier than Congress and declared a “warfare on terror” that will “not finish till each terrorist group of worldwide attain has been discovered, stopped, and defeated.”
Over the following 20-plus years, the tab on that battle, which started in Afghanistan however unfold throughout the globe to Burkina Faso, Iraq, Libya, Mali, Niger, Pakistan, Somalia, Syria, Tunisia, and Yemen, has ballooned to greater than $6 trillion.
The payoff has been dismal: So far, the warfare has killed round 900,000 individuals, together with greater than 350,000 civilians; displaced as many as 60 million; and led to humanitarian catastrophes and the worst U.S. army defeat for the reason that Vietnam Struggle.
American money has constructed armies which have collapsed or evaporated when challenged; in the meantime, the variety of overseas terrorist teams all over the world has greater than doubled from 32 to 69.
“Counterterrorism methods which handle the foundation causes of terrorism, somewhat than the organizations and people who commit it, would possibly finish the waves of terrorist violence.”