Selling the War on Terror
Foreign Policy Discourses after 9/11
By Jack Holland
Routledge – 2013 – 248 pages
This book uses a comparative analysis to examine foreign policy discourses and the dynamics of the ‘War on Terror'.
The book considers the three principal members of the Coalition of the Willing in Afghanistan and Iraq: the United States, Britain and Australia. Despite significant cultural, historical and political overlap, the War on Terror was nevertheless rendered possible in these contexts in distinct ways, drawing on different discourses and narratives of foreign policy and identity.
This volume explores these differences and their origins, arguing that they have important implications for the way we understand foreign policy and political possibility. The author rejects prevalent interpretations of a War on Terror foreign policy discourse, in the singular, highlighting that coalition states both demonstrated and relied upon divergent policy framings to make the War on Terror possible. The book thus contributes to our understanding of political possibility, in the process correcting a tendency to view the War on Terror as a universal and monolithic political discourse.
This book will be of much interest to students of foreign policy, critical security studies, terrorism studies, discourse analysis, and IR in general.
"The book is essential for students of international relations, politics, terrorism and security studies, and for anybody wishing to gain a broader understanding of the rhetoric, truths, and discourses that constructed, and continue to construct, the War on Terror. By constructing replacement discourses, Holland provides a new and intriguing space for perceiving and realising the persistent War on Terror." - James Hume, Macquarie University, Australia
Introduction 1. Language and Legitimacy: Foreign Policy as Culturally Embedded Discourse 2. Agency, Audience and Alternative: Foreign Policy and Political Possibility 3. Before 9/11 4. From Void to Crisis: From September 11th 2001 to 9/11 5. Response: Afghanistan 6. Translation: Iraq Conclusion
Jack Holland is Lecturer in International Relations in the Department of Politics at the University of Surrey, and has a PhD in International Relations from the University of Warwick.