Terrorizing Ourselves: Why U.S. Counterterrorism Policy Is Failing and How to Fix It

Book Forum
May 24, 2010 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM EDT


Featuring Benjamin Friedman, Research Fellow in Defense and Homeland Security Studies, Cato Institute; Rick “Ozzie” Nelson, Director of the Homeland Security and Counterterrorism Program, Center for Strategic and International Studies; and Jim Harper, Director of Information Policy Studies, Cato Institute; moderated by Christopher Preble, Director of Foreign Policy Studies, Cato Institute.

U.S. policymakers too often manipulate and exaggerate the threat of terrorism. The result is a public that believes what terrorists want people to think: that they are global supervillains who can wreck American society unless we submit to their demands. The attempted bombing in Times Square demonstrates again the tensions between media and political demands to ratchet up fears and the focused, methodical, investigatory work that counters terrorism. In Terrorizing Ourselves: How U.S. Counterterrorism Policy Is Failing and How to Fix It, leading scholars and analysts dismantle much of the flawed thinking that dominates U.S. counterterrorism policy today. They demonstrate that polices inspired by the specter of indomitable terrorists are self‐​defeating, leading to needless war, wasted wealth, and diminished freedoms. The authors offer alternative counterterrorism and homeland security strategies, ones that play to American confidence rather than fear, while making us safer. Please join us for a lively discussion of these timely ideas and how to implement them.

Join the conversation on Twitter using #CatoEvents. Follow @CatoEvents on Twitter to get future event updates, live streams, and videos from the Cato Institute.