Cite: Perliger, How Democracies Respond to Terrorism

 Perliger, Arie. “How Democracies Respond to Terrorism: Regime Characteristics, Symbolic Power and Counterterrorism.” Security Studies 21.3 (2012): 490-528.

 

URL: http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09636412.2012.706505

 

Abstract

While the academic study of counterterrorism has gained momentum in recent years, it still suffers from major theoretical weaknesses. One of the most prominent shortcomings is an absence of theories that can effectively explain the factors that shape the counterterrorism policies of democratic regimes. The present study attempts to fill this theoretical void in two ways. First, it proposes an analytical framework for a classification of counterterrorism policies. Second, it presents a theoretical framework that strives to uncover the factors that have influenced the struggle against domestic terrorism in democratic regimes. The analyses, which have used a unique and comprehensive dataset that documents counterterrorism policies in eighty-three democracies, show that the robustness of the regime’s democratic foundations as well as the symbolic effect of terrorism are major forces in shaping the democratic response to it, while the direct impact of terrorism is less influential than assumed in the literature.

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