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Abstract for 2008 Honors Colloquium

Michael Woolslayer

International Relations

"Liberal Democracies' Previous Experience with Counterterrorism"

On September 11, 2001, Liberal democracies the world over awoke to the threat of Jihadi terrorism.  Thus, countries have been forced to react to this threat.  Policymakers almost universally describe this reaction in terms of striking a new balance between rights and security, in favor of security.  I hypothesize that those liberal democracies with significant previous experience combating  domestic terrorism will have a smaller deviation from the societal equilibrium on September 11 than those without such experience.  In order to test this hypothesis, I look at the cases of the United Kingdom, Spain, the United States, and Australia.