You might have noticed that at this point, the global “war on terror” is going about as well as the “war on drugs.” That is, governments appear to be losing.
Then again, much like the war on drugs, it’s impossible for the public to know what “losing” actually means.
One might have thought, for instance, that the US was “losing” the war against crack cocaine in the early 80s, but as it turns out, transforming African Americans in Los Angeles into drug addicted zombies was part and parcel of the CIA’s plan to funnel money to the Contras.
Similarly, it might appear to the uninitiated (and by “uninitiated” we mean “general public”) that the West is “losing” the war on terror. But once you begin to understand what’s actually been going on in Syria for the last five years, it turns out that while the bloody civil war may have helped al-Qaeda remain relevant (via al-Nusra) and may have spawned a group of CIA-backed, Nike-wearing, desert barbarians, all that terror had until recently been exceptionally effective at destabilizing the Assad government.
So who knows what “winning” and “losing” actually means in the grand scheme of things, but at the micro level (that is, at the civilian level) victory and defeat are easy to separate. For the clueless masses, “defeat” is when more innocent people are blown apart by a suicide bomber or hit with Kalashnikov fire while eating dinner than they were last year.
On that note, we bring you the following rather shocking statistics from the latest Global Terrorism Index (via the Institute For Economics & Peace) which show that not only did terrorism reach its highest level ever in 2014, it was up 80% from the previous year.