The bombings of the Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City and of the World Trade Center in New York City have joined a long history of terrorists acts against the United States. In this newly updated edition of his book, Jeffrey Simon reaches back to the founding days of the Republic to tell a story that is both instructive and alarming. Simon uncovers the dynamics of a deadly conflict that affects all Americans. His in-depth interviews with terrorists and their victims, with reporters, government officials, and others bring to life a tale of presidents and terrorists, media and society, all entangled in a drama of international violence.
The Terrorist Trap traces the government response to terrorism from the days of Thomas Jefferson and the Barbary Pirates to William Jefferson Clinton's confrontation with homegrown terrorism. It explores the terrorist trap: the psychological, political, and social elements that make terrorism unlike any other conflict. With the end of the Cold War and the defeat of Saddam Hussein's army in the Gulf War, many believed that the threat of terrorism had been significantly reduced. But Simon shows how terrorism grows out of political, economic, and social grievances that can never be
fully resolved, as events in Israel and elsewhere continue to demonstrate. Living with terrorism will be an inescapable part of life in the twenty-first century. Simon calls on officials to move away from the useless rhetoric of defeating terrorism and to focus instead on achievable goals in combating this global problem.