Were the 9/11 attacks justified?http://www.fas.org/irp/world/para/docs/980223-fatwa.htm http://english.aljazeera.net/archive/2004/11/200849163336457223.html...

Were the 9/11 attacks justified?





Analyze the plausibility - if there can be any - of the contention that there might have been a certain justification for the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack on the U.S. In your essay, compose an argument for - or against - an alleged pattern of American wrongdoing that could possibly merit such an attack. Whatever your position, support it with one theoretical assumption or hypothesis from the readings to date.

Expert Answers
scarletpimpernel eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The word "justify" is quite ambiguous and possesses religious implications. I certainly do not believe that the argument that any terrorist attack is deserved is valid, but if you are writing an essay for an argument class, you do need to consider the other side. So, if you take the position that the 9/11 attacks were unjustified, try to include a concession in your argument to demonstrate that you are logical. Your concession could focus on the religious connotation of "justify." If Al Qaeda and its members believed that the United States' culture had perverted their religious culture and that the United States was responsible for the deaths of innocent Muslims, then they could argue that their response (9/11) was just and valid in their eyes of God.

Again, I certainly don't believe that committing mass murder is ever justified, but if you are trying to present a convincing, logical argument, you must do as your assignment details and discuss both perspectives.

belarafon eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Justification for the 9/11 attacks stems directly out of the Radicalized Islamic teachings of Osama bin Laden and others. I am no Islamic scholar, and I do not pretend to know where these teachings differ from "real" Islam, but all the hints, motivations, and religious justifications exist in literature and lectures widely available. From our Western standpoint, there is no legitimate justification for the attacks, but for students of Radical Islam, they seem entirely straightforward. See these links for more information and research traditional vs. modern Islamic teachings.

stolperia eNotes educator| Certified Educator

My perception is that the individuals involved in planning and carrying out the attacks felt justified in doing so because they considered the United States as having been an agressor attacking their way of life and beliefs for so long and in such a blatant manner as to make drastic reprisal appropriate. I think this is a perversion of any type of logical or rational thought and that aggression is never an acceptable solution to any conflict.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I do not believe that there was a real pattern of American wrongdoing that could have made these attacks justified.  The US has clearly made mistakes at times in its dealings with Arab and Muslim nations.  However, I do not think that it is right to say that the US has ever deliberately caused the death of innocent people as a matter of official policy.  Therefore, I do not think that we "deserved" to be attacked in this way.

pacorz eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Alilon, I have no idea where you are getting your information, but there were NO plans to "Take down them towers anyway". The World Trade Center, like every other large public building in the US, was constantly being maintained and worked on; that's the nature of public buildings.

You really should check your facts before you post on here, particularly on sensitive topics.

lsumner eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Killing innocent people is never justified. On 9/11, innocent people lost their lives due to terroism. Terroists act in a cowardly manner. There is no justification whatsoever for all the innocent lives that were lost. The is no true understanding of how some terroists could be so cruel. Killing in the name of religion just makes it worse. 

rrteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

From the standpoint of international law and conventions, the attacks were clearly not justified. If the United States was indeed guilty of a pattern of transgressions, then international bodies exist that would allow for formal accusations. Revenge is not a valid justification for acts of violence, if indeed a justification is possible.

bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Cold-blooded murder is NEVER justified, no matter what excuses may be prevented for killing someone. The 9/11 attacks were targeted on innocent people who were unknown to their assassins, so the hijackers had no reasons whatsoever other than their own delusional interpretation of their religion and an overwhelming hatred for Americans.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I don't think it was an actual justification.  There is no justification for a terrorist attack on civilians, especially such a cowardly one.  The terrorist groups just have to justify their actions, so they seem to be in the right, so they can continue garnering support.  They need supporters to continue buying into their lies.

dano7744 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

No, I do not think these acts were justified. I believe these acts were nothing more than murder of innocent people. Who could possibly say these people deserved to die such an untimely death? Granted, the U.S. has arguably mistreated certain populations but that behavior is not justified either.

malakxavi | Student
In reply to #10: i totally agree with u.. what happnd can never b justified but at the same time, americans should think,, why that happnd.
ivana | Student

No! It is my view that the death of innocent people is never justified. I cannot think of an argument that could be in favour of any terroristic acitivity. Plus what is the result of 9/11? The attackers just gave justification to USA government to invade countries for its own goals and provided a good opportunity for Bush administration to stay in power. War after war... resulting in more deaths of the innocent. So, no I don't see how it could be justified. Whatever the politicians of some country have done is no excuse for killing people of that country.

alilion | Student

Alilon, I have no idea where you are getting your information, but there were NO plans to "Take down them towers anyway". The World Trade Center, like every other large public building in the US, was constantly being maintained and worked on; that's the nature of public buildings.

You really should check your facts before you post on here, particularly on sensitive topics.

i know it is sensitive topic...i don't intend to upset anyone.., if you do some research there were works going inside the towers before 9 11 happened, couple of days before

jillyfish | Student

We're the attacks just? No.

Was America blameless? Most definitely not.

The above answers seem to have made that classic student mistake of not reading the question properly. They merely offer shallow rejections of the attacks without considering America's attitude to Middle Eastern politics.

America supported/supports dictatorships in almost all Middle Eastern countries. It refuses to limit the violent oppression of the Palestinians by Israel. Arabs have been oppressed, humiliated, ignored, tortured and killed for three generations by bloody rulers who have been actively supported by America.

Ancient Arab communities were ethnically cleansed in order to create Israel and those people continue to live in refugee camps 60 years later and are often collectively punished by their America-armed, Jewish neighbor. Israel is allowed to do anything it likes thanks to Washington's blind support.

Throughout all this, the America people didn't/don't care. Most American people still haven't bothered to work out why 9/11 happened, preferring to believe childish simplicities such as, 'They hate freedom'.

The 9/11 attacks were an atrocity and can never be justified, but America seems almost wilfully determined to alienate Arabs. America's behavior in the Middle East has been a catalogue of casual brutality that is so oppressive and uncaring that it borders on institutional racism.