Terrorist foes are not new to the United States. Two centuries before 9/11, our country sought to protect its citizens from a foe who held allegiance to no country, the Barbary pirates of North Africa. Capturing ships and demanding a ransom for the crew provided a steady income for the pirates. Many seamen became slaves when the ransom couldnt be paid. The newly elected president, Thomas Jefferson, was forced to confront the continued attacks. Many wished to avoid conflict at any cost. Jefferson believed that continued payment to the terrorist pirates would only encourage more demands, so he refused to pay. The U.S. Navy was formed during 4 years of war in the Mediterranean. Our naval victories in 1815 led to treaties which ended all tribute money paid by the United States.