Few people have the advantages that Alain Bauer possesses in providing an overview of the current world security crisis. He is the ultimate example of “been there, done that”. Welcome in the inner circles of a half dozen countries, his opinions are eagerly sought as the efforts to cope with terrorism at times seem like chasing an escalating train that is all too rapidly pulling away from the station. With a wry humor he has avoided the temptation to say that he told us so, considerably in advance of the current pandemonium. But he did tell us so, and this nuanced consideration of how the current and progressively worsening situation should be viewed at least gives us a start on rethinking the solutions.Those who know him also know that he is an ecumenical and tolerant thinker who balances the demands of protection with the tradition of civil rights. He is not an alarmist but a realist. This essay then provides a trusted overview of a dilemma, how to react to one of the most serious threats to Western democracy in living memory. The French experience has much we can appreciate. It’s examination could not come at a more needed time, and deserves the widest possible circulation and a permanent place is the literature of the unhappy challenges we now face. Paul Rich President, Policy Studies Organization
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