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'Shock and awe' response to 9/11 helped jihad's spread: analysts

The Twin Towers of the World Trade Center burning after two planes crashed into each building in New York on September 11, 2001While 9/11 failed to bring America to its knees as Al-Qaeda hoped, it ushered in an era of instability, especially in the Middle East, that Islamic extremists have skilfully exploited, analysts say. By reacting with a doctrine of “Shock and Awe” and invading Iraq in 2003, the US committed a series of missteps that indirectly helped foment jihadism, say critics. Founded in the 1980s, Al-Qaeda was gravely weakened after being expelled from Afghanistan in 2001 by the US-led invasion of the country that had harboured the terror group’s leader Osama bin Laden.

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