I feel that an important aspect of my article last week was not fully explained enough and is worth further elaborating on. That aspect is how the terrorists won.
Yes, in the end one suspect was killed and the other was apprehended but that does not mean that the terrorists lost. The terrorists were able to accomplish their goal and the reaction to their original bombing further amplified their success.
Terrorists do not kill people “for no reason at all.” Terrorism is rather, merely an extension of politics. Terrorism is used to create fear and bring the terrorist’s issues into the mainstream dialogue so that changes can be made.
The more attention people give to terrorists the greater the success they achieve. Whether it was from morbid curiosity to see the blood spattered streets and grisly wounds, fear, or true concern for what was going on millions tuned in; whatever the motivations of the viewers, the terrorists achieved notoriety.
Terrorists however do not only wish to cause fear, they wish to cause actual damage as well. There are two ways in which they can accomplish this.
The first method is by regular physical destruction. While the original bombing did tragically result in several deaths it did not result in widespread damage or carnage.
While no buildings were destroyed there was plenty of damage done. The massive manhunt consumed vast quantities of limited resources and resulted in the entire Boston area economy coming to a stop.
In my article last week my mention of the monetary cost of this seemed to be misunderstood to mean that I cared more about money than people. However, that is not what I was saying. My point is that the more money that is spent and the more the economy is disrupted, the more tempting it will be for terrorists to strike in the future.
The terrorists surely received a thousand fold return on their investment when it comes to how much the bombing cost them versus how many resources were spent and lost in the hunt to apprehend them. What terrorist in their right mind would pass up such a lucrative investment opportunity?
The more resources are used and lost as a response to a terrorist act the more the terrorists succeed and that is something that needs to be considered as the more terrorists succeed the more others shall be incentivized to attack in the future.
The other way in which terrorists seek to cause damage is by destroying the culture and fundamental things that are part of our society. I can think of few things more Un-American than militarized police roaming around and instituting what amounts to martial law.
If we allow for terrorists to make us give up on the core principles of our society what is there left to defend? To live free means that you may not be perfectly secure.
Some people will still maintain that security is still worth giving up liberty. To those people I say that I, an anarchist who does not believe in the US, am more patriotic than you which is a disturbing thought.
I leave you with the words of the great Bostonian Samuel Adams. “If ye love wealth better than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsels or arms. Crouch down and lick the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.”