The Union, the World and Counter-Terrorism: How to Normalize the Extreme?
Epilogue to: Laura Ferreira-Pereira and Bruno Oliveira Martins (eds.), The EU’s Fight Against Terrorism: The CFSP and Beyond (Routledge, 2013)
5 Pages Posted: 18 Feb 2014
Date Written: February 17, 2014
Since roughly 2008, the debate surrounding counter-terrorist measures has slowly been moving from furious prioritization of containment to a greater focus on long-term strategy and human rights protection. President Obama was elected as a change maker to move the US ‘beyond the politics of fear’ (Klaidman, 2012). In Europe, Governments of the EU Member States and consequently their representatives in the Council are not the same as during the 9/11 attacks and the following containment period. The realization has been gaining ground, both in public opinion and amongst judges and politicians, that many counter-terrorist policies have become normality. They have been in place for more than a decade and many are here to stay, either because the threat continues to exist or simply because they are difficult to repeal. Today’s students do not remember a pre-9/11 world and the share of politicians and scholars without a pre-9/11 consciousness is growing. The two recent legal milestones in the area of counter-terrorist policies, the Lisbon Treaty and the Stockholm Programme (both 2009), have emphasized respect for fundamental rights (e.g. Article 75 TFEU and p. 3 of the Stockholm Programme). Counter-terrorism research should take account of the ‘normality’ of their field – whether this normality is normatively desirable or not. In the following, I will highlight five aspects that I believe to deserve attention in future counter-terrorism research.
Keywords: European Union; Counter-Terrorism; Normality
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