How America’s Political and Media ‘Fear Industry’ Helps the Islamic State

How America’s Political and Media ‘Fear Industry’ Helps the Islamic State
Republican Presidential Candidate Donald Trump speaks during the final day of the Republican National Convention, Cleveland, July 21, 2016 (AP photo by Carolyn Kaster).

Despite a historically unprecedented degree of national security, many Americans are worried about defeat at the hands of a motley group of violent extremists, particularly the so-called Islamic State. This climate of fear has been building steadily since the 9/11 attacks on the United States, which taught many political leaders as well as much of the military and intelligence community that it was safer to overinflate threats than to underestimate them. People are rarely ever held accountable for dire warnings that prove to be wrong, but they often are for failing to prevent an attack. The result, as Michael Cohen […]

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