The wars against terror have begun, but it will take some time before the nature and composition of these wars is widely understood. The objective of these wars is not the conquest of territory, or the silencing of any particular ideology, but rather to secure the necessary environment for states to operate according to principles of consent and make it impossible for our enemies to impose or induce states of terror. "Terror and Consent" argues that, like so many states and civilizations in the past that suffered defeat, we are fighting the last war, with weapons and concepts that were useful to us then but have now been superseded.Philip Bobbitt argues that we need to reforge links that previous societies have made between law and strategy; to realize how the evolution of modern states has now produced a globally networked terrorism that will change as fast as we can identify it; to combine humanitarian interests with strategies of intervention; and, above all, to rethink what 'victory' in such a war, if it is a war, might look like - no occupied capitals, no treaties, no victory parades, but the preservation, protection and defence of states of consent.
This is one of the most challenging and wide-ranging books of any kind about our modern world.
Philip Bobbitt has served as a senior adviser at the White House, the Senate and the State Department in both Democratic and Republican administrations, and has held senior posts at the National Security Council, including Director for Intelligence Programs and Senior Director for Strategic Planning. He is currently Professor of Law and Director of the Center for National Security, Columbia University; and Senior Fellow, the Strauss Center for Law and International Security, the University of Texas. He has been Anderson Senior Research Fellow at Nuffield College, Oxford, where he was a member of the Oxford Modern History Faculty, and Marsh Christian Senior Fellow of War Studies at King's College, London. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and has written books on nuclear strategy, social choice and constitutional law, as well as the celebrated The Shield of Achilles (Allen Lane/Penguin 2002). He lives in Austin, New York and London.