After becoming the face of Jihad in 2014, Abu Bakr Al- Baghdadi committed suicide on the 27th October 2019, during a US special forces raid on his hideout in Syria.
The irony in Baghdadi’s death compared with his apparently extreme (to say the least) morals on pride, strength and fighting for what you believe in, speaks for itself. President Trump even stated; “He died like a dog. He died like a coward”.
“The 9/11 attacks not only drastically changed the world we live in, but transformed air-travel forever”
Baghdadi may be dead, but this doesn’t mean the death of Isis, for a new leader has already been published through the terrorist group’s media wing. There is still much unrest. In fact, as you’re reading this, there are anti-government protests blocking the main roads in Iraq’s capital, Baghdad.
But what does this mean for travel? It seems only right to start at the birth of the mass fear of terrorism that has festered and grown for the last 18 years: the 11th of September 2001. The 9/11 attacks not only drastically changed the world we live in, but transformed air-travel forever.
From the birth of the TSA, to full body scans and no bottles or liquids on the plane, 9/11 has influenced flying in countless ways. Not only were the rules regarding travel altered, but opinions and prejudices were significantly spiked. And this has hardly improved; those from ethnic minorities are up to 42 times more likely than white people to be stopped by the police or airport security.
“In reality, an attack is far less likely to happen twice in the same place”
9/11 was the death of an era and the birth of a new one. In fact, it could be argued that the rise of Trump and his ideals may have never been thought of if it wasn’t for the wave of prejudice the attacks provoked across both America and the rest of the world.
Due to rational human fear, we can all agree that after hearing about a terrorist attack at a location, for example Nice, it is not then going to be our number one holiday destination. We may have an inkling to stay clear. However, in reality, an attack is far less likely to happen twice in the same place, as the attackers normally flee and more security is enforced in the area afterwards.
Dave Maddeb, an analyst at CMC Markets UK stated that “When events like this happen, traders wonder will there be a negative impact on tourism, and companies in the travel and leisure sector feel the pressure”.
“After the Paris attacks in 2015, the capital city and the region had a whopping 1.5 million fewer tourists in 2016 compared to 2015”
So what impact do terrorist attacks have on the economy of the city? Well, in Barcelona in 2015, a van ploughed into a heavy tourism district, killing 13 people, and injuring around 100. Post attack, stock markets in Europe fell. Shares in airlines, hotels and travel companies took the hardest blow.
Yet this isn’t the only example. After the Paris attacks in 2015, the capital city and the region had a whopping 1.5 million fewer tourists in 2016 compared to 2015, a year after the attack. This seemingly minute 0.8 percent decrease cost the region around 1.3 billion euros.
But what has the Islamic state meant for immigration? The best place to start with this is Donald Trump – who may actually have the phrase ‘Build the wall!’ tattooed multiple times over his body, considering the amount of times the phrase is uttered from his mouth.
“Children and adults detained for illegally crossing the border from Mexico were kept in tightly confined cages”
Trump’s administration introduced the RAISE act in 2017, which aims to reduce levels of legal immigration to the US by 50%. This is done by heavily decreasing the number of green cards that are issued.
However, in 2018, media reports surfaced regarding the almost sub-human treatment of immigrants at a Texas facility known as Ursula, also referred to as La Perrera (meaning dog kennel in Spanish). Children and adults detained for illegally crossing the border from Mexico were kept in tightly confined cages simply for trying to escape the turmoil of their country and make a better life for themselves.
“Arguably, a collective social perspective has shifted as a result of the Islamic state and their conflicts”
It was reported that there was up to 20 children in one cage. But does all of this stem from prejudice of ethnic minorities, which terrorism works as a catalyst for?
In light of Baghdadi’s death, it is important to reflect on the Islamic State’s impact globally. Both immigration and tourism have been drastically affected and arguably, a collective social perspective has shifted as a result of the Islamic state and their conflicts. What will they change next?
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