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Running head: THE EVOLUTION OF DOMESTIC TERRORISM1The Evolution of Domestic Terrorism: A Comparison of Pre and Post 9/11 Terrorist EventsFelicia HudsonColumbia Southern University
THE EVOLUTION OF DOMESTIC TERRORISM 2The Evolution of Domestic Terrorism: A Comparison of Pre and Post 9/11 Terrorist EventsDomestic terrorism is an increasing threat to the national security of the United States. Terrorist often use conventional and innovative ways to cause fear, chaos, and disrupt the public’s way of life. However, over the last few decades, there has been changes to the methods and motives of terrorist attacks. To demonstrate how terrorist activities have changed, this research paper will be comparing and contrasting a pre-9/11 terrorist event- the Olympic Centennial Park Bombing with a post-9/11 terrorist event-the Orlando, Florida Pulse Night Club Shooting. Both events share a few similarities and differences. Prior to 9/11, lone wolf terrorist Eric Rudolph detonated a shrapnel bomb at 1:20 a.m. on July 27, 1996 in Olympic-Centennial Park; the bomb was concealed in a military backpack undera park bench, killing two (one actually died of a heart attack) and injuring 111 others (Atlanta Olympics, 2006). The park was crowded with thousands of spectators attending a rock concert. Rudolph called 911 warning there was a bomb set to detonate in the park; security immediately began evacuation procedures. Rudolph used his survivalist skills to evade law enforcement for five years; he was captured on May 31, 2003 in Murphy, North Carolina. Rudolph’s motive for the bombing was to bring shame on the federal government because of its legalization of abortions, protest global socialism, and force the cancellation of the Olympic Games; this was detailed in a lengthy statement released April 13, 2005 (Atlanta Olympics, 2006). After the 9/11 terrorist attacks, Omar Mateen choose the use of firearms to carry out his act of domestic terrorism. On June 12, 2016, Mateen walked into the gay nightclub Pulse and began shooting patrons with an AR-15 assault rifle and hand gun (Americas, 2016). A total of 49people was killed, and 53 others were wounded; this was considered the worst act of domestic terrorism since 9/11. The club was packed with people celebrating Gay Pride Month as the shots
THE EVOLUTION OF DOMESTIC TERRORISM 3rang out. Mateen placed a call to 911 accepting responsibility for the attack and his support of the radical terrorist group, the Islamic State (Americas, 2016). After a four-hour hostage stand-off, Mateen was killed by police as he exited the club’s bathroom. The possible motives for Mateen’s attack was he anger toward the homosexual community because he saw two men kissing and his support for the radical Islamic extremism. Pre-9/11 Terrorist Event: Olympic Centennial Park BombingThe 1996 Summer Olympic Games took place more than one year after the Oklahoma City bombing; security was already on high alert at the stadium providing more than 30,000 local, state, federal law enforcement and private security protecting the Olympic Games (Spaaij and Hamm, 2015).