Why are we still at ‘war’ with terror 16 years after 9/11? This book will discuss what we have collectively done well, what we have done poorly, what we have yet to try and how we get to the point where terrorism does not dominate public discourse and cause disproportionate fear around the world.
This book looks at a variety of approaches and responses to international Islamist extremism, ranging from military and security/law enforcement action to government policies, community measures and religious efforts, with a goal to determining what has worked and what has not. The examples are drawn largely from the West but the book’s scope is global.
- Written in a clear, non-academic style
- Uses recent events to explain terrorism
- Is wide-ranging and ‘ex-practitioner’ based
Chapter One: Why we Should Not See Terrorism Primarily as ‘War’
Chapter Two: Intelligence and Law Enforcement Role in Counter Terrorism
Chapter Three: Governments: Laws, Policies and Outreach Programmes
Chapter Four: Community Engagement: From Academics to Religious Leaders to Technology Companies to Citizens
Chapter Five: The Problem with Counter Narratives
Chapter Six: Does Islam Have a ‘Problem’? Does the Islamic World?
Chapter Seven: Conclusion: How Does Terrorism End?
Phil Gurski served for more than 30 years as an analyst in the Canadian intelligence community. In 2001 he joined CSIS where he was a strategic analyst, specializing in homegrown Al Qaeda-inspired terrorism and radicalization to violence. In 2013 he moved to Public Safety Canada as a Senior Strategic Advisor on Canada’s Countering Violent Extremism policy.
Phil Gurski has studied and countered terrorism for most of his adult life, first as a Canadian intelligence official, now as an esteemed commentator. In this book he condenses his knowledge and expresses his views, without pulling punches but in a constructive way, over two decades of War on Terror. Highly informed common sense for experts and laypeople alike.
Gurski is sketching a realistic path to end the war on terrorism. Amidst the abundance of literature on (counter)terrorism, Gurski is adding a rare but insightful piece to the debate: personal experiences of counterterrorism professionals. Reading Gurski means learning to defeat concrete threats and to accept the phenomenon of terrorism as part of civilisation.
In this small book, Phil Gurski provides a concise and incisive discussion of the big issues in the “war on terrorism”. Drawing on his long service as an analyst and a sound appreciation of scholarship, he provides a highly accessible, realistic, and informative survey of the strengths and weaknesses of the diverse responses to the threat by Western states.