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Terrorism and the Constitution:
Sacrificing Civil Liberties In The Name Of National Security

by David Cole, James X. Dempsey

ISBN 1565847822 / 9781565847828 / 1-56584-782-2
Publisher New Press, The
Language English
Edition Softcover
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Book summary

A chilling analysis of the constitutional costs of the new war on terrorism, from two leading experts.

In a vivid and important critique of our government's response to threatsreal and perceivedfrom communists in the 1950s, Central American activists in the 1980s, Palestinians in the 1990s, and now Islamic terrorists in the twenty-first century, two leading constitutional scholars warn that many of our government's anti-terrorism efforts sacrifice civil liberties without effectively protecting national security.

James X. Dempsey, former assistant counsel to the U.S. House Judiciary Subcommittee on Civil and Constitutional Rights, and David Cole, a law professor and leading civil liberties lawyer, contend that in its response to the attacks of September 11, the Bush administration has already repeated many of the worst mistakes of the past, and is unlikely to make Americans more secure. By comparing recent anti-terrorism measures to law enforcement abuses of the past, the authors make a compelling case against the 1996 and 2001 Anti-Terrorism Acts, both of which offer the FBI far more latitude than is necessary or desirable in a free society.

The book concludes with a detailed blueprint that shows how we can fight terrorism without indulging in guilt by association, political spying, and unchecked federal powers, and how we will be safer in the long run if we adhere to these restraints. [via]