Daisy Banks interviewed international terror expert Jessica Stern on why terror appeals to some:
War simplifies life. So does terrorism. There is an enemy. The enemy is evil, and we are good. There is a reason for living and all the ordinary confusion of life falls away. The adrenaline becomes addictive. ... It’s ironic that the mission of [Al Qaeda] shifts so regularly and is so highly dependent on the audience they are trying to reach that you do question the extent to which bin Laden believes his own rhetoric.
Bin Laden started out with the goal of forcing Soviet troops out of Afghanistan. Next he aimed to force US troops out of Saudi Arabia. Next he claims to be representing the interests of all the world’s oppressed. At one point Zawahiri tried recruiting African-Americans with messages referring to Malcolm X. Now al Qaeda claims to be fighting global warming and is urging followers to help those suffering from the floods in Pakistan.
So you think al Qaeda has gone too far in trying to be all things to all people?
Yes, I do.