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Fighting Terrorism: How Democracies Can Defeat Domestic and International Terrorists

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In this innovative and concise work, Israeli politician Benjamin Netanyahu offers a compelling approach to understanding and fighting the increase in domestic and international terrorism throughout the world. Citing diverse examples from around the globe, Netanyahu demonstrates that domestic terrorist groups are usually no match for an advanced technological society which In this innovative and concise work, Israeli politician Benjamin Netanyahu offers a compelling approach to understanding and fighting the increase in domestic and international terrorism throughout the world. Citing diverse examples from around the globe, Netanyahu demonstrates that domestic terrorist groups are usually no match for an advanced technological society which can successfully roll back terror without any significant curtailment of civil liberties. But Netanyahu sees an even more potent threat from the new international terrorism which is increasingly the product of Islamic militants, who draw their inspiration and directives from Iran and its growing cadre of satellite states. The spread of fundamentalist Islamic terrorism, coupled with the possibility that Iran will acquire nuclear weapons, poses a more frightening threat from an adversary less rational and therefore less controllable than was Soviet Communism. How democracies can defend themselves against this new threat concludes this provocative book.


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In this innovative and concise work, Israeli politician Benjamin Netanyahu offers a compelling approach to understanding and fighting the increase in domestic and international terrorism throughout the world. Citing diverse examples from around the globe, Netanyahu demonstrates that domestic terrorist groups are usually no match for an advanced technological society which In this innovative and concise work, Israeli politician Benjamin Netanyahu offers a compelling approach to understanding and fighting the increase in domestic and international terrorism throughout the world. Citing diverse examples from around the globe, Netanyahu demonstrates that domestic terrorist groups are usually no match for an advanced technological society which can successfully roll back terror without any significant curtailment of civil liberties. But Netanyahu sees an even more potent threat from the new international terrorism which is increasingly the product of Islamic militants, who draw their inspiration and directives from Iran and its growing cadre of satellite states. The spread of fundamentalist Islamic terrorism, coupled with the possibility that Iran will acquire nuclear weapons, poses a more frightening threat from an adversary less rational and therefore less controllable than was Soviet Communism. How democracies can defend themselves against this new threat concludes this provocative book.

30 review for Fighting Terrorism: How Democracies Can Defeat Domestic and International Terrorists

  1. 4 out of 5

    Michael O'Brien

    This is an interesting view by a leader in one of the countries that has had to deal with it more profoundly and nearly constantly --- Israel --- on how to deal with international terrorism. Since Benjamin Netanyahu, whether one likes or hates him, has been a leading politician in Israel for 25 years, as well as one of its longest serving Prime Ministers --- and with personal experience in counter-terrorism operations, I was interested to read his thoughts on this topic and how to deal with it. This is an interesting view by a leader in one of the countries that has had to deal with it more profoundly and nearly constantly --- Israel --- on how to deal with international terrorism. Since Benjamin Netanyahu, whether one likes or hates him, has been a leading politician in Israel for 25 years, as well as one of its longest serving Prime Ministers --- and with personal experience in counter-terrorism operations, I was interested to read his thoughts on this topic and how to deal with it. Where Netanyahu's points and opinions are strongest are with Middle Eastern terrorism, which given his role in his nation and the threats it's had to deal with, is not surprising. However, he spends about a third of the book addressing domestic terrorism in the United States, and, indeed, his audience seems intended to be an American one. This book was written in 1995 --- so, at that time, with the formation of militias and the Oklahoma City bombing --- this did seem to be a growing threat. So Netanyahu likely felt any book written addressing terrorism must needs address the perceived threat of American anti-government extremists. However, in doing so, he shows little understanding of America and its citizens, despite having lived in America for many years, both in his youth as well as professionally as an adult. He seems to view constitutional liberties of American citizens as being expendable if the Government determines necessary to suspend in combating a domestic threat. For example, he maintains that constitutional rights are means by which to "ensuring the health and well-being of the citizens". No, civil rights --- at least in the United States --- are NOT means to health and well-being. --- dangerously fungible terms that could easily be justified as reasons by whichever political group holds sway to trample upon the rights of other citizens. America, perhaps, is unique in that, from its founding, liberties are ends --- not "means" --- in themselves, considered to be inalienable and self-evident and fundamental --- preexisting the Federal Government and even America itself. That is not to say that America has been perfect in upholding rights of all its citizens --- only to say, instead, that America has held these as ideals to achieve from its very beginning. We never have linked the collective's health and well-being to one's rights and freedoms. That these have happened is a collateral benefit of these, not the other way around as Netanyahu seems to understand them. Netanyahu seems to feel that if a group's freedom of assembly, or religion, or right to bear arms seem threats to "health and well-being" as the politicians in the Federal Government define them --- then such rights may be suspended. Indeed, he cites as evidence examples used in Western Europe during the 1970s and 80s to confront their own terrorist threats, but these are hardly as persuasive as he thinks. Moreover, for a man known for pragmatism and cynicism, he seems to naively believe that extraordinary and unconstitutional powers given to the U.S. Government would just be given up once the crisis is past. Given the abuses against American citizens by Federal law enforcement officials and the intelligence community over the last 60 years, including their most recent abuse of the FISA court processes, clearly, these are not unrealistic concerns. What salvages this book and makes it valuable are Netanyahu's views on combatting international terrorism --- particularly in the Middle East and with respect to Islamic terrorism. Indeed, many, if not most of the measures he calls for in his book, were subsequently adopted in the aftermath of 9/11 and were highly successful However, like many contemporary American neocons, he makes the mistake of going beyond this in calling for the Americans to remove Saddam Hussein, condemning America for failing to finish the job. As it turns out, America did follow this advice --- with disastrous results --- destabilizing the region and giving a huge boost to Iran --- very much the world's leading supporter of terrorist groups both then and now --- which, in this book, Netanyahu also condemns at length. I think that this book has historical value. It provides an insight into the mind of israel's current leader as well as providing an record of how, not just Netanyahu, but many political leaders in the 1990s viewed the international terrorist threat and how best to combat it. But is it a great book? No, but it is an interesting one.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ray

    No real surprises in this book. If you've followed Netanyahu's political career and policies, you probably already understand what this book will be about. This book is about more of the same, and not about creative solutions. The policies will make sense to readers who share his beliefs that the Arabs are anti-Israel, not because Palestinians lost their land to create a Jewish State, and not because of Israeli policies which impact the arab population, but because the Arabs and Muslims are by t No real surprises in this book. If you've followed Netanyahu's political career and policies, you probably already understand what this book will be about. This book is about more of the same, and not about creative solutions. The policies will make sense to readers who share his beliefs that the Arabs are anti-Israel, not because Palestinians lost their land to create a Jewish State, and not because of Israeli policies which impact the arab population, but because the Arabs and Muslims are by their nature anti-Jew and anti-West. Thus, the only answer for Israel and Western Nations is to deal with them from a position of strength and distrust until they see the light. I imagine that this is such an obvious truth to him, that to even consider the effects of alternate paths to peace such as by stopping continued 'illegal' settlements, or compromises leading to a Palestinian state, don't warrant any mention in this book at all.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Henken

    Really good and lucid account of the nature of terrorism and how to fight it. Written in 1995, the book is shockingly spot-on about the further development of Islamic terrorism and plausibly alarmist about nuclear proliferation to terrorists states. I just wish that the author would issue an updated edition taking into account the 20-years since the book was first published. I wonder if he is busy with something else.

  4. 4 out of 5

    N

    I got this book cheap as a discard from a local library. And once I read it I was very surprised that it was discarded. I can only assume that they simply looked at the pub. date (1995), say that it was about terrorism, and simply assumed that the info was obsolete. This is untrue with very few exceptions. It could easily be updated with more current cases, however, much of it seems like it could have been written yesterday. This is a highly relevant book from a very interesting perspective. Obv I got this book cheap as a discard from a local library. And once I read it I was very surprised that it was discarded. I can only assume that they simply looked at the pub. date (1995), say that it was about terrorism, and simply assumed that the info was obsolete. This is untrue with very few exceptions. It could easily be updated with more current cases, however, much of it seems like it could have been written yesterday. This is a highly relevant book from a very interesting perspective. Obviously, being written by an Israeli Prime Minister means that it is very biased when it comes to Palestinian- Israeli relations, but I have yet to see a source that is not. This book is well worth the read if you're interesting in learning about international terrorism.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Andre

    Great book. This book was written pre 9/11. We should have read it sooner.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Randal Schmidt

    "The citizens of free societies must be told again and again that terrorists are savage beasts of prey, and should be treated as such. Terrorism should be given no intellectual quarter." - excerpt from the book. Your reaction to this book will likely be decided based on your feelings towards the author, Benjamin Netanyahu, or towards Israel and the United States. As a pro-Western, pro-Israel American, I highly recommend this book! Although somewhat dated (1st edition was in 1995), there is now on "The citizens of free societies must be told again and again that terrorists are savage beasts of prey, and should be treated as such. Terrorism should be given no intellectual quarter." - excerpt from the book. Your reaction to this book will likely be decided based on your feelings towards the author, Benjamin Netanyahu, or towards Israel and the United States. As a pro-Western, pro-Israel American, I highly recommend this book! Although somewhat dated (1st edition was in 1995), there is now only more of an urgent need for the West to confront and stop the spread of terrorism. After almost twenty years in the Post-9/11 world, there is considerable fatigue in the West generally and in the US specifically among the average public in regards to fighting terrorism. This is unfortunate because the threat continues (and will continue until the major terrorist-sponsoring states are dismantled or rendered useless). In this light, this book is even more important now than when it was written in 1995. "The Western democracies are inherently very strong, precisely due to the nearly universal ideological ties which, beneath the cacophony of democratic politics, quietly unite their peoples."

  7. 4 out of 5

    Dawn

    Perhaps one feels as though they would know Benjamin Netanyahu’s mind when it comes to dealing with terrorists. This book may help dispel any of that mythology. He isn’t a George Bush clone. He has his own thoughts based on his training and study and his life spent in the defense of a perilous small nation surrounded by enemies. In this 2001 edition, President Netanyahu discusses domestic terrorism at length, in addition to international terrorism. He places no confidence in groups of citizens a Perhaps one feels as though they would know Benjamin Netanyahu’s mind when it comes to dealing with terrorists. This book may help dispel any of that mythology. He isn’t a George Bush clone. He has his own thoughts based on his training and study and his life spent in the defense of a perilous small nation surrounded by enemies. In this 2001 edition, President Netanyahu discusses domestic terrorism at length, in addition to international terrorism. He places no confidence in groups of citizens attempting to take the law into their own hands, for whatever reason. At the end of the book, he lists ten ways to combat terrorism in any form.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Martin Streetman

    Here is another book with a really old bookmark, all I need is a few more weeks of being snowed in and I will be through all of my started books pile. So this book was written in 1995 and one wonders if our leaders had bothered to read it how september of 2001 would have been different. One big supprise was that he is in favor of gun control, one would think that after the disarming of German Jews by the Nazi's prior to the Holocost he would have a strong position against gun control. I guess you Here is another book with a really old bookmark, all I need is a few more weeks of being snowed in and I will be through all of my started books pile. So this book was written in 1995 and one wonders if our leaders had bothered to read it how september of 2001 would have been different. One big supprise was that he is in favor of gun control, one would think that after the disarming of German Jews by the Nazi's prior to the Holocost he would have a strong position against gun control. I guess you learn someting new every day.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kendall

    I became interested in Netanyahu after hearing him on the Imus show. He's was incredibly articulate and comes off as a very intelligent man. I realize he has his detractors- but all that aside- he's got some important things to say. For example- this book- if taken as gospel by our government when it originally came out six years ago- could've prevented the terrorist attacks of 9/11. There's a lot of good background information on terrorists groups- their backers and the motives behind terrorism I became interested in Netanyahu after hearing him on the Imus show. He's was incredibly articulate and comes off as a very intelligent man. I realize he has his detractors- but all that aside- he's got some important things to say. For example- this book- if taken as gospel by our government when it originally came out six years ago- could've prevented the terrorist attacks of 9/11. There's a lot of good background information on terrorists groups- their backers and the motives behind terrorism in the book. I highlighted the most interesting bits in yellow.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Sandie

    This is a 2001 publication. I would like to know his opinion this year. I found it to be a helpful book to explain what is going on (in the terrorist world), and why, and what can be done. Natanyahu is easy to read and understand. Helpful to understand what is going on in the Middle East today.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Michael Connolly

    The main thing I learned from this book was that the Arab terrorism of the 1970s and 1980s received much support from the Soviet Union. Since the end of the Cold War, Iran has become the major state sponsor of terrorism.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Eyad

    Highly recommended for every person learning about deceitful means that pillaging enterprises use in recruiting support. Colonialism is about historical distortion and construction of unrooted narratives.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Shawn

    An how-to guide on fighting terrorism from the once and future prime minister of Israel.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Kathy Marler

    A view from someone who has lived the extreem effects of terrorism...where the U.S. is headed if we don't wake up and do something.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Amber

    I read this when I lived in Israel right before Netanyahu won his first election as Prime Minister of Israel.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Glenn

    Written over ten years ago by current (and two-time) Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, his insights into fighting international and domestic terrorism are just as relevant in 2009.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Douglas

  18. 4 out of 5

    Ján Kapusňak

  19. 5 out of 5

    Stephen

  20. 5 out of 5

    Louis

  21. 5 out of 5

    Michael

  22. 5 out of 5

    Josh

    Interesting. Gave the history of modern terrorism, which was new to me.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan Tennis

  24. 4 out of 5

    Katerina

  25. 4 out of 5

    Leo Russomanno

  26. 4 out of 5

    Betty

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jodi

  28. 4 out of 5

    Eric

  29. 5 out of 5

    Andrea

  30. 5 out of 5

    EcoDesk Pomona

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