Society has changed immensely from the historical readings throughout this course. The world has transformed from scattered countries and villages with their own cultures, to a high tech, global community. This new societal structure, deemed Globalism, is defined as “the promotion of interdependence of cultures and peoples in all parts of the world”. (Fiero, 2011) The beginning of this futuristic world came with the origin of digital technology. Communication, to anywhere in the world is immediate, information can be found and passed with just a few keystrokes, and travel is faster and cheaper than ever imagined. This new fantastic knowledge, coupled with major historical events such as the disintegration of Soviet Communism, the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the conclusion of the Cold War, together ushered in this new reality of a world community. (Fiero, 2011)
Globalism, with its countless advantages in technology and integration, still holds many challenges. Many feel it difficult, with such a combination of influences from all over the world, to retain their individual ethnicity and traditions. With the creation of television, not only were important events and news being featured, but western consumerism and culture was also being endorsed. (Fiero, 2011) This westernization took hold without resistance in some parts of the world, but in others it has created immense resentment and hate. As a result, a recent growth in political movements has been witnessed that seek to strengthen the “collective sense of uniqueness”. (Ericksen, 1999) They usually accomplish this by targeting globalization processes, in that they deem this as a threat to “local distinctiveness and self-determination”. (Ericksen, 1999) This has been deemed by some as identity politics, whose main goal is the “restoration of rooted tradition, religious fervor and/or a commitment to ethnic or national identities.” (Ericksen, 1999)
Because of globalism, identity politics has significantly been on the up rise in the last several decades. With the world changing from small groups of distinct cultures to a single integrated society, many fear the loss of their ancestry. This anxiety to hold onto the past can surface in a broad spectrum of ways, from simple nationalism and pride in your heritage to extreme hatred and resentment to all those that you feel are trying to threaten your culture. Those that experience this latter emotion are the small group of individuals that form the foundation of terrorist groups. Terrorism is one of the most significant issues our world faces today.
Terrorist attacks just in the United Stated alone can be seen as early as 1920, where a bomb was planted in New York City in a horse drawn carriage. The blast killed 35 individuals and was never solved. In more recent years, with the advancement of technology, the attacks have become more deadly. While researching this topic it becomes unbearably apparent that this is a terrifying horror that plaques our existence today. The number of attacks that happen daily all over the world is staggering and almost leave you breathless. Attacks on the U.S. have alone been too numerous to mention. Full listing of terrorist attacks in the U.S. or to Americans: http://www.infoplease.com/ipa/A0001454.html
Many of the attacks that have taken place in recent years have been the doing of one particular extremist group called al-Qaeda. They are a global Islamic militant group founded by Osama bin Laden in the late 1980s. Among the beliefs attributed to Al-Qaeda members is the view that a Christian–Jewish alliance is collaborating to destroy Islam. They believe that the killing of civilians is religiously endorsed, and they ignore any facet of religious scripture which might be interpreted as forbidding the murder of civilians. Al-Qaeda also opposes man-made laws, and wants a strict form of sharia law to replace them. Specific practices...