A Crusade Gone Wrong

Published date01 January 2015
Date01 January 2015
Subject MatterArticles
A Crusade Gone Wrong:
George W. Bush and the
War on Terror in Asia
Saumyajit Ray1
President George W. Bush regarded the war on terror he unleashed in
Afghanistan and Iraq as a war of ideas just as it was a war of arms. With evan-
gelical zeal and through his policy of regime change, he wanted to introduce
Western-type liberal democracy in both countries but failed in the attempt.
Though “democratically”-elected governments took office in Kabul and Baghdad,
the American occupation was strongly resisted in both places, leading to the
emergence of new insurgencies (Iraq) and the gradual regrouping of militants
dislodged from power (Afghanistan). Not only did the United States under Bush
fail to prevent Pakistan from aiding Afghan militants, it helped Shi’ite Iran in gain-
ing an unprecedented foothold in the affairs of the new Shia-led dispensation
in Iraq. George W. Bush’s surge for democracy through military intervention
in Afghanistan and Iraq resulted in a new wave of anti-Americanism in those
regions and provided a fresh lease of life to Islamic fundamentalism. His crusade
had indeed gone wrong.
Regime change, al-Qaeda, Islamic fundamentalism, war on terror, Taliban,
When two hijacked airplanes rammed into the Twin Towers of the World Trade
Center at New York City on 11 September 2001, the USA suddenly found itself
faced with a formidable enemy, the like of which it had seldom seen before. It was
something that after Pearl Harbor, no one, not even the Soviet Union, had dared
to do—attack America on American soil. In fact, there was no formidable enemy
for 10 long years; the Soviet Union fell apart in 1991, but America’s decade as the
lone superpower was not without problems.
International Studies
52(1–4) 12–26
2017 Jawaharlal Nehru University
SAGE Publications
DOI: 10.1177/0020881717718018
1 Assistant Professor in United States Studies, Centre for Canadian, US & Latin American Studies,
School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India.
Corresponding author:
Saumyajit Ray, Centre for Canadian, US & Latin American Studies, School of International Studies,
Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi-110 067, India.
E-mail: ray.saumyajit@gmail.com

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT