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Hijacking Counterterrorism: The Rise of National Anti-Terrorism Laws After 9/11


In less than a decade 142 countries enacted or reformed more than 260 counterterrorism laws worldwide. The new laws, viewed as a whole, represent a broad expansion of state powers to investigate, detain, prosecute, and imprison individuals. This dissertation is the first effort to document the rise of counterterrorism laws worldwide and evaluate their impact on individual rights. Drawing on national legal data collected in collaboration with the Program on Terrorism and Counterterrorism at Human Rights Watch, the work reveals that counterterrorism develops out of a confluence of power politics and cultural ideas in world society. It also shows that state officials frequently use counterterrorism laws to secure their authority and cloak repressive enforcement tactics in rule of law.

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