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Repressive Efforts are Consistently Counterproductive in Reducing al-Qaeda-Inspired Violence Against Canadians


The Canadian government has increased its counterterrorism activities with regard to Al Qaeda-inspired extremism significantly since 9/11. Such activities have included repressive actions such as deployment of armed forces to Afghanistan to support the NATO-led mission there, proscriptions against various terror groups, increased surveillance and criminal justice activities at home, and defensive measures such as increased border protections and airline security procedures. However, Canada has also initiated conciliatory actions that are only indirectly related to terrorism, such as providing economic assistance in Somalia, Afghanistan, and the Palestinian Territories, providing community programs to increase tolerance and awareness of the benefits of multiculturalism, apologies to innocents affected by repressive action, and acquittals of suspected terrorists on civil rights grounds. Which of these measures are more effective in preventing Al Qaeda-inspired terror attacks? We find that repressive actions have been consistently counterproductive in reducing such incidents against Canadians. When the Canadian government has employed repressive measures against Muslims both at home and abroad, Al Qaeda-inspired extremist incidents have increased in subsequent months.

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Chenoweth, Erica and Laura Dugan. "Repressive Efforts are Consistently Counterproductive in Reducing al Qaeda-Inspired Violence Against Canadians." Sie Cheou-Kang Center for International Security and Diplomacy and the University of Denver Josef Korbel School of International Studies. (August): http://www.du.edu/korbel/sie/media/documents/quickfacts-and-policy-briefs/chenoweth-dugan-pb.pdf

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