Sidebar: Bin Laden's Faith Is a Pretext for Violence
The October 2002 bombing of a nightclub in Indonesia's popular resort island of Bali, which killed more than 190 people—mostly tourists and many Westerners—is a grim example of the new Arab way of war. Planning and educating the agents in bomb making and holy-war doctrine took place over months in several locations. The planners of this bombing and others have been linked to the Jemaah Islamiya Southeast Asia terror network as well as Al Qaeda.
The first great struggles between the Middle East and Europe to be recorded fully were the campaigns of Salamis and Plataea in 480-479 B.C. The Greeks triumphed, and for the next several hundred years Western civilization slowly advanced east. In the 7th century A.D. this was reversed sharply when the Bedouins emerged from Arabia, defeated the Persian and eastern Roman empires, and conquered the Middle East, North Africa, and Spain. The invaders eventually were stopped in the east in 718 at the city walls of Constantinople, and in the west in 732 some 200 miles from Paris. There were to be another thousand years of see-saw wars on sea and land before the last Middle Eastern attack on a major European city, Vienna, was repulsed in 1683. It was not until the attacks by Arabians on New York in 2001 that a major Western city again came under assault from the Middle East.