Latest Terrorism News
Although it has faced grave national security threats in the past, the United States has been transformed as never before by the threat of terrorism since the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on New York, Pennsylvania and Washington, DC.
The threat of new attacks on American soil and new - albeit widely debated - imperatives in U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East, have the led the nation into costly wars in Afghanistan and Iraq lasting nearly a decade. At home, the country has reconceived its approach to security, creating a new cabinet-level department, the Department of Homeland Security, and granting sweeping new powers to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Central Intelligence Agency and other arms of the national security complex.
The declared enemy in this fight is al Qaeda, a stateless organization founded in the late 1980s and motivated by a radical interpretation of Sunni Islam. Al Qaeda is led by Osama bin Laden, the son of a prominent Saudi family, and operates from bases concentrated in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and North Africa.
Critics of the so-called "War on Terror" say that the threat of terrorism - vague and impossible to ever fully extinguish - had been used to justify costly wars (both in terms of deficit expansion and human lives) and abuses of human rights including torture and indefinite detention without trial for alleged enemies believed but not proven to have committed terrorist acts.
Still, the American populace has broadly assented to the changes of the last 10 years, expressing willingness to trade personal liberties and national resources for a sense of safety.
Certainly, the U.S. has not been alone in contending with Islamist terrorism. Al Qaeda and associated groups have killed civilians in attacks in England and Spain and a significant number of attempted attacks on airliners, airports and other sites have either been foiled by authorities while still in planning stages or interrupted in the attempt (as in the case of the attempted Christmas Day, 2009 bombing of a Detroit-bound jet and a man's attempt to set off a car bomb in Times Square, New York in May, 2010).
- Play CBS Video 6/18: Officials say NSA stopped over 50 potential terror attacks; Hi-tech giant creates next generation of Edisons
- Play CBS Video Afghan military officially takes control of country's security
- Play CBS Video President Obama defends decisions on surveillance and Syria
- Play CBS Video David Coleman Headley: Terror sleeper agent foiled by NSA
- Play CBS Video Obama: Afghan-Taliban talks "important first step"
- Play CBS Video 6/15: Wildfire continues to burn in Colorado; Teen's impact on fighting poverty
- Play CBS Video Egypt cuts diplomatic ties with Syrian regime
- Play CBS Video 6/12: Winds feed wildfires in Colorado; 10-year-old gets an adult lung transplant
- Play CBS Video NSA director says agency is "trying to protect Americans"
- U.N. office in Mogadishu attacked by al Qaeda-linked Somalia militants
- Why Obama needs to explain America's national interest in Syria
- Drug traffickers' vehicle of choice
- Officials: NSA programs broke terror plots in 20 nations
- Al Qaeda has feared weapon, Mali documents suggest
- Police: Vandals cut locks leading to Boston water supply
- Here's what the feds have on you: Everything
- Susan Rice and her attackers
- London mosque torched, far-right group's initials found at scene in wake of soldier's brutal murder
- U.S. puts bounties on al Qaeda, West African terror suspects
- Afghanistan suicide blast targeting NATO patrol kills 2 troops, 9 school kids
- Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula warns Americans to "mind your own internal affairs"
- Ben Stein: Declaring end to War on Terror is surrender
- Cuba denounces continued inclusion on U.S. terror list
- State Dept.: Iran support for global terror surged in 2012
A device that adds GPR features to a standard metal detector is the latest tech advance in the search for buried explosives.
News organizations rushed Thursday to cover the U.S. air strike that killed al-Qaida leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi.
Soldiers in Iraq, filmmaker in U.S. use inexpensive camcorders and constant stream of IMs and e-mail to create award-winning documentary.