How Terrorist Campaigns End: Evil or Error

What conclusions can be drawn from the long history of terrorist and counter-terrorist campaigns, particularly about how they end?

The World Today
Published 1 March 2005 Updated 15 October 2020 6 minute READ

Adam Roberts

What directions does this suggest for the ongoing United States-led ‘war’ on terror? The answers to these questions may indicate that in Britain, and Europe more generally, a distinctive and historically informed approach to terrorism and counter-terrorism is needed.

President George Bush won the US presidential election partly on the basis of his clear and forthright line on terrorism. While it has merits, the approach is also deeply flawed – nowhere more so than in its neglect of history and restricted vision of how terrorist campaigns end.

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