Fear of Muslims is the biggest effect of 9/11 on American society: American scholar

TEHRAN (IQNA) — An American academic names the “fear of Muslims” one of the biggest changes in American society after the September 11 attacks.

The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 not only caused major changes in the foreign policy and international relations of the United States, but also led to the division of the history of international relations into two periods before and after September 11 .

As a result of the policies adopted after the attack, the concept of the “war on terror” officially entered the world’s political literature. This fight against terrorism and extremism has also led to the targeting of certain religious minorities, especially Muslims, for attacks and harassment in the United States as well as in other states.

To discuss the matter further, IQNA reached out to Mildred Elizabeth Sanders, professor of government at Cornell University.

Professor Sanders’ main research interests are in American political development and grassroots politics. His other research and teaching interests include the rise (and fall) of America’s institutions of economic regulation, the executive branch in general, foreign policy, social movements, urban ecology and sustainability, and struggles for democratize governance processes.

Here is the full text of the interview:

IQNA: More than twenty years have passed since the terrorist attacks of September 11. What do you think is the biggest change in the domestic and foreign policy of the United States of America after these events?

Sanders: At this point, I think the changes are slight. After decades of big military spending and failure to accomplish anything useful, I predict fewer uses of the military…. especially since we may now be entering another cold war with great powers and have huge new domestic spending. Donald Trump could be credited with taking a strong stance against invasions from other countries. And President Biden followed his lead in Afghanistan.

IQNA: Some believe that the September 11 attacks put more pressure on minorities in American society, such as Muslims. What do you think was the reason for this pressure?

Sanders: Terrorism creates hostility towards the cultures that sponsor it. But this hostility has greatly diminished since 9/11. There are several Muslims in Congress and a sharp increase in Muslim candidacies in the United States in recent years.

IQNA: What do you think was the biggest change in American society after the September 11 attacks?

Sanders: One could speak of “fear of Muslims” and growing skepticism towards Saudi Arabia (although this has not been visible with Presidents Trump or Biden. The Saudis are credited – both by Trump and Biden – for their more positive relations with Israel.

IQNA: Why are 9/11 conspiracy theories still published and accepted by some people?

Sanders: With social media, there are now conspiracy theories about everything. And the national government’s reluctance to release data on the perpetrators of 9/11 adds to the skepticism.

IQNA: Why do you think that despite the death of people like Osama bin Laden or the defeat of the Islamic State in the Middle East, terrorism still exists as a major security problem in the world?

Sanders: Yes, clearly it still exists in Africa, the Middle East and sometimes in the West. I cannot explain why so much violence exists. In the United States, Muslims obviously face far less prejudice than non-Muslims (or non-Sunnis) in the Middle East.

Interview with Mohammad Hassan Goodarzi

The views and opinions expressed in this interview are solely those of the interviewee and do not necessarily reflect the views of International Quran News Agency.

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