Last week's tragic and deadly terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India, serve, sadly, as just the most recent reminder of the impact global terrorism has had on every continent and nation around the world. While the face of terror often carries a different banner and agenda, the symbolic, emotional and fatal impact it can have on a civilian population is undeniable.
Over seven years removed from the terror attacks of September 11, 2001, the incident in Mumbai increasingly resembles a bookend of sorts in the chronology of global terrorism. Much like the cosmopolitan city of Mumbai, New York City represented not only a logistically ideal, civilian-dense target right on America's coastline, but a symbolic strike against American capitalism and finance. Much like New York City, Mumbai stands as a symbol of diversity and freedom in a country often plagued by sectarian divisions and strife. Crown jewels in two of the world's largest and most prosperous democracies.
There have been far too many terrorist attacks since 9/11, and to limit such a list to only five was no easy task. Many lives have been lost; relics, buildings and temples of worship left in rubble. Our goal at RealClearWorld was to avoid a list exclusively based on casualties, and instead accounted for other important factors in these attacks: Symbolism, strategic significance and domestic political impact were also considered alongside the carnage and bloodshed produced by these attacks.
With that criteria in mind, here are our five selections:
No. 5 Mumbai, 2006