Fresh Perspectives on the ‘War on Terror’

Fresh Perspectives on the ‘War on Terror’

Edited by: Miriam Gani, Penelope Mathew

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On 20 September 2001, in an address to a Joint Session of Congress and the American people, President George W Bush declared a ‘war on terror’. The concept of the ‘war on terror’ has proven to be both an attractive and a potent rhetorical device. It has been adopted and elaborated upon by political leaders around the world, particularly in the context of military action in Afghanistan and Iraq. But use of the rhetoric has not been confined to the military context. The ‘war on terror’ is a domestic one, also, and the phrase has been used to account for broad criminal legislation, sweeping agency powers and potential human rights abuses throughout much of the world.

This collection seeks both to draw on and to engage critically with the metaphor of war in the context of terrorism. It brings together a group of experts from Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, France and Germany who write about terrorism from a variety of disciplinary perspectives including international law and international relations, public and constitutional law, criminal law and criminology, legal theory, and psychology and law.


ISBN (print):
ISBN (online):
Publication date:
Jul 2008
ANU Press
Law; Science: Psychology; Social Sciences: Politics & International Studies, Social Policy & Administration
Australia; Europe: France, Germany, United Kingdom; North America: Canada

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Fresh Perspectives on the ‘War on Terror’ »

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  1. Introduction: Letters from the Front (PDF, 124KB)Miriam Gani and Penelope Mathew doi

Part One — Identifying the Threat and Choosing the Weapons

  1. Islam and the Politics of Terrorism: Aspects of the British Experience (PDF, 188KB)John Strawson doi
  2. Another Modest Proposal: In Defence of the Prohibition against Torture (PDF, 196KB)Desmond Manderson doi
  3. Protecting Constitutionalism in Treacherous Times: Why ‘Rights’ Don’t Matter (PDF, 191KB)W Wesley Pue doi

Part Two — Preparing the Ground: Balance, Proportionality, and Public Perceptions

  1. Balancing Security and Liberty: Critical Perspectives on Terrorism Law Reform (PDF, 206KB)Simon Bronitt doi
  2. Lay Perceptions of Terrorist Acts and Counter-Terrorism Responses: Role of Motive, Offence Construal, Siege Mentality and Human Rights (PDF, 1.3MB)Mark Nolan doi
  3. The Proportionality Principle in the Context of Anti-Terrorism Laws: An Inquiry into the Boundaries between Human Rights Law and Public Policy (PDF, 244KB)Christopher Michaelsen doi

Part Three — Rules of Engagement: Beyond the Limits of the Law

  1. More Law or Less Law? The Resilience of Human Rights Law and Institutions in the ‘War on Terror’ (PDF, 279KB)Andrew Byrnes doi
  2. Black Holes, White Holes and Worm Holes: Pre-emptive Detention in the ‘War on Terror’ (PDF, 262KB)Penelope Mathew doi
  3. Forgiving Terrorism: Trading Justice for Peace, or Imperiling the Peace? (PDF, 197KB)Ben Saul doi

Part Four — Reports from Two Theatres of War: Legislation, Sanctions and Prosecutions in Europe and Australia

  1. The European Union as a Collective Actor in the Fight against Post-9/11 Terrorism: Progress and Problems of a Primarily Cooperative Approach (PDF, 227KB)Jörg Monar doi
  2. The European Union, Counter-Terrorism Sanctions against Individuals and Human Rights Protection (PDF, 323KB)Gabriele Porretto doi
  3. How Does it End? Reflections on Completed Prosecutions under Australia’s Anti-Terrorism Legislation (PDF, 268KB)Miriam Gani doi
  4. Executive Proscription of Terrorist Organisations in Australia: Exploring the Shifting Border between Crime and Politics (PDF, 230KB)Russell Hogg doi

Part Five — Calling a Halt: The Role of Bills of Rights

  1. Strapped to the Mast: The Siren Song of Dreadful Necessity, the United Kingdom Human Rights Act and the Terrorist Threat (PDF, 305KB)Colm O’Cinneide doi
  2. The ACT Human Rights Act 2004 and the Commonwealth Anti-Terrorism Act (No 2) 2005: A Triumph for Federalism or a Federal Triumph? (PDF, 197KB)Andrew Byrnes and Gabrielle McKinnon doi

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