U.S. “War On Terror” Has INCREASED Terrorism

Charts Show that U.S. Policy Has Increased Terror Attacks

The National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) Global Terrorism Database – part of a joint government-university program on terrorism –  is hosted at the University of Maryland.

START is the most comprehensive open source terrorism database, which can be viewed by journalists and civilians lacking national security clearance.

A quick review of charts from the START database show that terrorism has increased in the last 9 years since the U.S. started its “war on terror”.

This chart shows the number of terror attacks conducted in Iraq:


The Middle East:



Indeed, global terrorism had been falling from 1992 until 2004 … but has been skyrocketing since 2004:

Our Wars In the Middle East Have Created More Terrorists

Security experts – including both conservatives and liberals – agree that waging war in the Middle East weakens national security and increases terrorism. See this, this, this, this, this, this, this and this.


Killing innocent civilians is one of the main things which increases terrorism. As one of the top counter-terrorism experts (the former number 2 counter-terrorism expert at the State Department) told me, starting wars against states which do not pose an imminent threat to America’s national security increases the threat of terrorism because:

One of the principal causes of terrorism is injuries to people and families.

The Iraq war wasn’t even fought to combat terrorism. And Al Qaeda wasn’t even in Iraq until the U.S. invaded that country.

And top CIA officers say that drone strikes increase terrorism (and see this).

Furthermore, James K. Feldman – former professor of decision analysis and economics at the Air Force Institute of Technology and the School of Advanced Airpower Studies – and other experts say that foreign occupation is the main cause of terrorism

University of Chicago professor Robert A. Pape – who specializes in international security affairs – points out:

Extensive research into the causes of suicide terrorism proves Islam isn’t to blame — the root of the problem is foreign military occupations.


Each month, there are more suicide terrorists trying to kill Americans and their allies in Afghanistan, Iraq, and other Muslim countries than in all the years before 2001 combined.


New research provides strong evidence that suicide terrorism such as that of 9/11 is particularly sensitive to foreign military occupation, and not Islamic fundamentalism or any ideology independent of this crucial circumstance. Although this pattern began to emerge in the 1980s and 1990s, a wealth of new data presents a powerful picture.

More than 95 percent of all suicide attacks are in response to foreign occupation, according to extensive research [co-authored by James K. Feldman – former professor of decision analysis and economics at the Air Force Institute of Technology and the School of Advanced Airpower Studies] that we conducted at the University of Chicago’s Project on Security and Terrorism, where we examined every one of the over 2,200 suicide attacks across the world from 1980 to the present day. As the United States has occupied Afghanistan and Iraq, which have a combined population of about 60 million, total suicide attacks worldwide have risen dramatically — from about 300 from 1980 to 2003, to 1,800 from 2004 to 2009. Further, over 90 percent of suicide attacks worldwide are now anti-American. The vast majority of suicide terrorists hail from the local region threatened by foreign troops, which is why 90 percent of suicide attackers in Afghanistan are Afghans.

Israelis have their own narrative about terrorism, which holds that Arab fanatics seek to destroy the Jewish state because of what it is, not what it does. But since Israel withdrew its army from Lebanon in May 2000, there has not been a single Lebanese suicide attack. Similarly, since Israel withdrew from Gaza and large parts of the West Bank, Palestinian suicide attacks are down over 90 percent.


The first step is recognizing that occupations in the Muslim world don’t make Americans any safer — in fact, they are at the heart of the problem.

Our Program of Torture Created Terrorists

In addition, torture creates new terrorists:

  • A top counter-terrorism expert says torture increases the risk of terrorism (and see this).
  • One of the top military interrogators said that torture by Americans of innocent Iraqis is the main reason that foreign fighters started fighting against Americans in Iraq in the first place (and see this).
  • Former counter-terrorism czar Richard A. Clarke says that America’s indefinite detention without trial and abuse of prisoners is a leading Al Qaeda recruiting tool
  • A 30-year veteran of CIA’s operations directorate who rose to the most senior managerial ranks, says:

    Torture creates more terrorists and fosters more acts of terror than it could possibly neutralize.

“The administration’s policies concerning [torture] and the resulting controversies … strengthened the hand of our enemies.”

  • General Petraeus said that torture hurts our national security
  • And the reporter who broke Iran-Contra and other stories says that torture actually helped Al Qaeda, by giving false leads to the U.S. which diverted its military, intelligence and economic resources into wild goose chases

So the widespread program of torture under the Bush administration didn’t help.

Nice Job Creating More Terrorists, You Morons …

Additionally – in the name of fighting our enemies – the U.S. has directly been supporting Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups for the last decade. See this, this, this, this and this.

Why Have We Given Up Our Rights If the Government Can’t Keep Us Safe?

We have given up the fundamental rights which make us American.

The government insisted that – if we gave up our liberties – it would keep us safe.

It has failed to do so, and has instead squandered our national treasure, our resources and our troops on efforts which have only increased the risk of terrorism.

Wasted Defense Spending

A large amount of the homeland security spending has been wasted … producing “a bunch of crap”.

For example, spending money on zombie apocalypse training  or other silly programs is a bad investment which led to a false sense of security.

Spending defense money on a workshop called “Did Jesus die for Klingons too?” and DOD-run microbreweries is probably not helping stop terrorist attacks.

Moreover, using homeland security resources to spy on average Americans or crack down on peaceful protesters or government critics distracts from getting the actual bad guys.

At the same time, both the Bush and Obama administrations have slashed funding for programs which would actually help prevent terror attacks.

Heck of a job, guys …

The Real Agenda

Regime change was planned throughout the Middle East and North Africa were planned 20 years agolong before 9/11.

As just one example, U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, 4-Star General (and CENTCOM commander with responsibility for Iraq) John Abizaid, key war architect John Bolton,  a high-level National Security Council officer, President George W. Bush, Bush speech writer David Frum, Senator John McCain, Fed boss Alan Greenspan and Sarah Palin  all say that the Iraq war was about oil.   Documents from Britain show the same thing.

Much of the war on terror is really a fight for natural gas.  Or to force the last few hold-outs into dollars and private central banking.

Senior government officials have described terrorist attacks as a “small price to pay for being a superpower”.  And while politicians talk about ending the war on terror, endless war is a feature – not a bug – of our foreign policy.

Whatever the real agenda one thing is clear …  In the same way that NSA spying isn’t about preventing terrorism (proof here, here, here and here), the war on terror is cover for other shenanigans.

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  • jadan

    Anecdotal evidence suggests that shit attracts flies; but science now proves it!

  • Tonto

    This is a sign of overpopulation made possible by a scientific society.

    Humanity did not evolve logically-equipped to embrace the relatively new notions of tolerance and humanitarianism, and all these ideas entail in a complex society. These notions sound good, but their social enforcement imparts to all of us, a pent up desire to express our inner selves when we feel cornered. And right now, most everyone who is in debt or stressed due to the close proximity of so many desperate human souls, feels cornered.

    Do the right thing. What is the right thing at this moment in time? It’s certainly not public banking, or buying gold and endorsing a Libertarian scheme of kicking the can more frugally. Instead, we each should be looking to drag the system to the ground and completely extinguish scientific society.

    Will billions die? They certainly will, one way or the other, billions are going to die, either at the failing-hands of scientific society, or due to the end of scientific society. The question is, what will arise from the ashes? For the answer to that question, we have to ask, what is everyone learning from so many ubiquitous -FAILS-. I have learned, that while scientific promised many solutions, it has provided none that did not -as a byproduct- make human life incredibly more miserable. And the misery is spreading exponentially, and certainly faster than the population is growing, because tolerance is completely on the wane now.

    • I Disagree with Tonto up here.

      Air conditioning, the polio vaccine, solar energy, 4 season sleeping bags, electric guitars… I mean holy shit It’s difficult for me to even know which paragraph to start with.

      Tolerance and humanitarianism do not suppress our inner selves, saying that humanitarianism is a denial of humanity doesn’t even make sense. Perhaps you meant to say these notions suppress your inner self, because your argument is for bastards.

      I agree with the next paragraph completely, until the last two words. Scientific Society != Capitalism. Public banking is not aligned with the pursuit of knowledge, neither is libertarianism, nor buying gold. What those things do have in common is the pursuit of the accumulation of capital. Capitalism. Replace scientific society with capitalism.

      Yea yea, billions die, billions have died, billions will die. People die, and given that there are 7 billion people on the Earth, its pretty safe to bet that at least a billion of them will die eventually. You mention the word byproduct, which is a pretty sweet distinction, I like the idea of there being an unintended product of every reaction, but that you consider misery a universal unintended product of scientific society is just straight the fuck up ignorant. MRI machines, Prescription Bifocals, LSD, motherfucking blood types and the mapping of the human genome. A universal statement doesn’t require one goddamn example to be true, but it takes just one example to be proven false. So take your pick. Bionic limbs, bitch.

      Ok, I’m done being rude and I’m just about out of rage induced inspiration, so i’ll just make my piece quick. The real reason that everyone is angry, and scared, and stressed, is because of the militarization of capital accumulation. At some point, we forgot that the role of society is to increase the wellbeing of the planet. At some point we stopped using profit as a tool to increase wellbeing and started using the reduction of wellbeing as a tool to increase profit. At some point, the roles were reversed and economic growth became eroticized and the end in itself. In conclusion, the reason everyone is so miserable is not because of scientific society, but because the means became the end, and the end was done away with. We are now stuck in a society wired to grow that needs to be rewired to sustain.

      • Miles O’Keef

        that last paragraph sums up whats been milling about in my head. seems like nothing is off the table for being “weaponized”. very succinct, thank you

      • denisgr

        I think your on the right track…..Growth has become political…the reasons for this are complex but start with the left, needing resources in order to shift the balance of power…by reward not punishment….The right 1%-ers love the short term capital accumulation… importation of cheap labor as a means to that end. In-between is the middle class, left wondering why they have to dial 9 for english…stagnate wages and the cultural clashes..

        Most of the worlds problems go away by reducing the population…global warming, depletion of the oceans, sustainable agriculture, resource driven wars and the burden placed on nature….but all that conflicts with the growth model of the major power elite on both sides of the equation.

        I am actually glad I am a old man…I won’t be around to see the mess this is creating.

    • RalphFromMi

      Welcome to your crisi, Mr. Marx.

  • Dan1189

    There are risks that isolationism contributes to the growth of extremism as well. Failure to back a moderate client in Syria has contributed to the growth and popularity of more extremist elements such as Jabhat al-Nusra and Ahrar al-Sham (interesting and supportive of the above article, though, that the heavily-foreign ISIS extremist group is prompting a lot of organically Syrian backlash). Too much fear in intervention can result in pulling away from such issues entirely, which is almost equally harmful. A balance must be struck.

    • Mass

      What utter misguided pseudo reasoning.

      Why do you think America has gone from being one of the most admired countries in the world to one of the most resented and outright hated? The author is 100% spot-on. They resent us because we impose our will upon them. What gives us the right?

      “Back a more moderate client?” How about not backing the Iraqi army for all those years? How about not funding Bin Laden for all those years? How about not supporting virtually every oppressive Middle Eastern regime as long as they ‘play ball’ and supply us with cheap oil?

      How about minding our own f—ing business, and worrying about our problems. We’ve spent trillions on failed and pointless wars, when that same money could have been spent improving our own nation.

      We send our drones in to execute people who have not even attacked us. We detain indefinitely whoever we see fit. We operate massive, illegal spying programs on our own people.

      The “Federal” Reserve prints trillions of dollars of currency, which we must repay with interest, all the while borrowing hundreds of billions from China to finance a lifestyle we can’t afford, and then send it right back to them when we purchase their stuff since we no longer make stuff here anymore. We are building a prosperous China while our own country crumbles.

      How about using our military for what it was intended: national DEFENSE.

      The best way to be safe is to engender good will. The best way to spread democracy is by being a shining example of one. The best way to be prosperous is by investing in ourselves, not other nations.

      We don’t need to spend our own money, providing military services to our more-than-capable allies. If we continue on our current course, it will destroy our nation.

      • Thomas Barnes

        Right you are. I have been saying for several years that we have more of a terrorist threat along our southern border that we ever had in the Mid East. One that could be won and controlled with a lot less cost and loss of lives and limbs than were sacrificed in the Mid East.

  • erika

    blah blah blah