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The Military's Role in Counterterrorism: Examples and Implications for Liberal Democracies

The Military's Role in Counterterrorism: Examples and Implications for Liberal Democracies

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The author examines historical and contemporary examples of military involvement in counterterrorism, outlining the specific roles which the armed forces of liberal democracies have performed in combating terrorism, both in a domestic and international context. He describes the political, strategic, conceptual, diplomatic, and ethical problems that can arise when a state’s armed forces become engaged in counterterrorism, and argues that military power can only be employed as part of a coordinated counterterrorist strategy aimed at the containment and frustration—rather than the physical elimination—of the terrorist group(s) concerned.
The author examines historical and contemporary examples of military involvement in counterterrorism, outlining the specific roles which the armed forces of liberal democracies have performed in combating terrorism, both in a domestic and international context. He describes the political, strategic, conceptual, diplomatic, and ethical problems that can arise when a state’s armed forces become engaged in counterterrorism, and argues that military power can only be employed as part of a coordinated counterterrorist strategy aimed at the containment and frustration—rather than the physical elimination—of the terrorist group(s) concerned.

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05/12/2013

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Strategic Studies InstituteU.S. Army War College, Carlisle, PA
The Military’s Role inCounterterrorism:Examples and Implicationsfor Liberal Democracies
Geraint Hughes
L
etort
The Papers
Visit our website for other free publicationdownloadshttp://www.StrategicStudiesInstitute.army.mil/
 
TheLetort Papers
 
In the early 18th century, James Letort, an explorerand fur trader, was instrumental in opening up theCumberland Valley to settlement. By 1752, there wasa garrison on Letort Creek at what is today CarlisleBarracks, Pennsylvania. In those days, Carlisle Barrackslay at the western edge of the American colonies. It wasa bastion for the protection of settlers and a departurepoint for further exploration. Today, as was the caseover two centuries ago, Carlisle Barracks, as the home ofthe U.S. Army War College, is a place of transition andtransformation.In the same spirit of bold curiosity that compelled themen and women who, like Letort, settled the AmericanWest, the Strategic Studies Institute (SSI) presents
TheLetort Papers
. This series allows SSI to publish papers,retrospectives, speeches, or essays of interest to thedefense academic community which may not correspondwith our mainstream policy-oriented publications.If you think you may have a subject amenable topublication in our
Letort Paper 
series, or if you wishto comment on a particular paper, please contact Dr.Antulio J. Echevarria II, Director of Research, U.S. ArmyWar College, Strategic Studies Institute, 632 Wright Ave,Carlisle, PA 17013-5046. The phone number is (717) 245-4058; e-mail address is
antulio.echevarria@us.army.mil
.We look forward to hearing from you.
 
Letort PaperTHE MILITARY’S ROLE INCOUNTERTERRORISM:EXAMPLES AND IMPLICATIONSFOR LIBERAL DEMOCRACIESGeraint HughesMay 2011
The views expressed in this report are those of the author and do
not necessarily reect the ofcial policy or position of the Joint
Services Command and Staff College, the United Kingdom (UK)Ministry of Defence, or any other UK government agency, theU.S. Department of the Army, the U.S. Department of Defense,or the U.S. Government. Authors of Strategic Studies Institute(SSI) publications enjoy full academic freedom, provided they do
not disclose classied information, jeopardize operations secu
-
rity, or misrepresent ofcial U.S. policy. Such academic freedom
empowers them to offer new and sometimes controversial per-spectives in the interest of furthering debate on key issues. Thisreport is cleared for public release; distribution is unlimited.*****This publication is subject to Title 17, United States Code, Sec-tions 101 and 105. It is in the public domain and may not be copy-righted.

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