What freedoms should the American people sacrifice in their fight against domestic terrorism?
7 mins read

What freedoms should the American people sacrifice in their fight against domestic terrorism?

When we talk about citizen insecurity and the loss of civil liberties as a result of the rise of domestic terrorism, terrorist acts affect everyone equally, therefore we are all responsible for reporting and being vigilant against any terrorist act that can be prevented by reporting against people who are just like you.

When it comes to national security, you are not conservative or democratic, poor or rich, white or black, you are American. In some cases, the product of a national tragedy, the call for national unity is the first thing we hear from politicians to overcome the threat.

But what happens when such a national tragedy like the congress attack was sparked by far-right native terrorist groups, nationalists, anti-Jews, pro-white supremacy, and anti-immigrants? The call for national unity is just an impossibility in a nation like America, which right now is politically divided between philosophically different extremist groups.

No matter the counter-terrorist strategy, the first victims are the loss of privacy, but also the diminution of the most fundamental rights guaranteed in a democratic society.

“After the events of September 11, there were many civil liberties that the American people gave up in the name of national security, after the attack on the Capitol which liberties american would lose in the name of national security. Here is where you will see who really are Americans”.

The difference between the terrorist act of September 11 and the insurrection in Congress is the nationality of the terrorists, which makes the work of containment, prevention, intelligence, investigation, persecution and combat of any insurgent group born on American soil more difficult.

On September 11 the terrorists were mostly Arab foreigners, on the contrary in the attack on Congress the terrorists are white Americans which makes it more difficult to identify future terrorist attacks because they are American just like you.

How difficult is it to defeat domestic terrorism?

Fighting a terrorist born in America is more difficult than fighting a terrorist born in the Middle East and even more so when that terrorist is your friend, your brother, your husband, your son or your coworker.

It is one thing to apply the full weight of the law to a foreign terrorist you do not know, than to apply the entire law to a homegrown terrorist or domestic terrorism who thinks and acts like you.

Will the FBI put on the terrorist list all radical racist, anti-Semitic and anti-democratic groups born on American soil that threaten national security? It is a decision that will change the face of all the groups of the American extreme right that until now have abused the freedoms that the constitution grants to all American citizens.

Until this moment, the American people did not know what the real cost of living in a democracy that guarantees all the freedoms they enjoy up to this moment.

No one doubts that in the face of an act of terrorism, international or domestic, the anti-terrorist activities of the intelligence agencies of the federal government increase to prevent, investigate, and bring to justice those responsible for planning or being part of an act of terrorism.

Let’s talk about the loss of personal privacy when the fight against terrorism is declared a national emergency that threatens national security.

Each of the communication devices such as smartphones, tablets, personal computers, surveillance cameras, travel routes, and places where you visit or your geographical location are data collected by a government intelligence agency in secret, many times without your permission.

Without you wanting to, you are part of that social surveillance mechanism to combat terrorism under the expression “if you see something say something” you are working for the government without pay.

It is one thing to report terrorists who are not the same as you as the Arabs, considered as them and another thing is to report any activity considered suspicious when this individual is the same as you, because the alleged ones are considered as Homegrown terrorists.

Can the mob that attacked the congress be considered a domestic terrorist? Everything will depend on the change in attitudes of the FBI, the president of Joe Biden and the congress if they accept this as a reality, on the existence of extreme right groups which can be labeled as domestic terrorists.

Anti-terrorist measures which may or may not diminish the civil rights of the American people as a mechanism to prevent future attacks. According to an intelligence analyst, freedom is not really free and in the face of the threat of domestic terrorism, the loss of these freedoms is inevitable.

No one doubts right now, We are all being watched by the intelligence agencies who listen to phone calls, observe movements in airports and public transportation, also everything you do, write or say on social media

. In short, our activities are being monitored and analyzed by federal intelligence agencies and all in the name of national security, and all because radicalized far-right groups attacked the congress building in the name of freedom of speech and the right to bear arms.

Can the ideology that fuels domestic terrorism be defeated?

One of the great problems of domestic terrorism is determining the reason behind the motivations for acts considered terrorist within a democratic and capitalist system.

To understand the motivations we must first accept the existence of these extreme right-wing groups that use terrorism to impose their ideology. How do these groups operate? What is their purpose? and what feeds these groups? They are necessary responses to dismantle any terrorist activity promoted and carried out by these groups.

What feeds these groups that use terrorism as a mechanism to impose their ideology, country vision, belief system, and government policy change? The answers that are important to find the root of the problem. You cannot defeat a domestic terrorist, if you do not understand the genesis of the ideology that fuels it.

But, when the terrorist movements is the product of lies, false personal convictions, the manipulation of information, religious indoctrination, compiratory ideas, white supremacy ideas, nationalism, fascist aspirations, fear of change, distrust in government, it is much more difficult to stop their Criminal activities.

Let’s also talk about the cult of personality such as the case of pro Trump supporters, who allege a lack of economic inclusion, have anti-democratic ideas, use and want to impose ultra-nationalist ideology of the extreme right to seek solutions to the problems of the nation that only exists in their minds and in some cases is supported by false compiratory theories.

That is why I think it is extremely difficult in a nation divided between us and them to accept these ideas as validity. One thing is the acceptance or application of ideas using the democratic consensus and another thing is the imposition of an ideology by an autocratic government.

That is the dilemma that the American people will be facing in the future if they do not understand the origin of domestic terrorism. As long as there is an America that lives in reality and another that lives in fantasy, national unity to face domestic terrorism will not be a reality.

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