The terrorists’ ploy is to assault the honor of their adversaries.
9/11/2001 was just such an assault, and the Cheney administration took the bait hook, line and sinker. Al Qaeda suckered the US into an honor-bound battle because
- al Qaeda knew the Cheney administration was inclined to fighting a battle in the out-moded terms of honor which al Qaeda preferred; and
- in so getting the Cheney administration to fight the battle on those terms al Qaeda was getting the West to fight its fight on al Qaeda's own terms rather than on those of the West's.