This chapter explains how the 'war on terrorism' consists of both practice and language, or discourse. Then, it suggests that discourses form the foundation for the practice by establishing the underlying assumptions, beliefs and knowledge. There are important and unambiguous connections between the language and the practice of counter-terrorism; critical discourse analysis permits people to analyse both the specific features of the language and the deeper relationship between discourse and the exercise of power. The chapter explores how the discourse affects the practice of the 'war on terrorism', particularly, how the language of counter-terrorism has consequences for the moral community, for democratic participation and for the practice of counter-terrorism. Additionally, the 'war on terrorism' as a geo-political and strategic project is as much driven by the internal logic and effect of the discourse as it is by concrete political events.
This chapter shows how hegemonic attempts to define and solidify Australian national identity have always been contested and unstable. It elucidates how Australian national conflict has been linked with tangible conflicts over land, injustice and power, and how they have been closely intertwined with anxieties about insecurity. The chapter argues that such a politics forestalls the achievement of a holistic and non-militarized security based upon the emancipation of human beings. It also argues that the operation of security politics gravely distorts Australian defence and foreign policy and directly endangers both others and the state's own citizens. The chapter suggests a range of ways in which the practices and conceptualizations of security, identity and sovereignty in Australia need to be refigured if Australian defence and security policy is to be rebalanced. It is important to place systems and processes of representation in security affairs, and politics more generally, under critical scrutiny.
On November 8, 2001, just days before the federal election, Prime Minister John Howard was making the customary leader's appearance at the National Press Club. This chapter exposes dilemmas about the role of intelligence in democratic politics, one that was to become a major issue in Howard's next term of government as he committed Australia to go to war against Iraq. Intelligence agencies had done much to dispel the suspicions and criticisms occasioned by the partisan conflicts in which they had sometimes been embroiled during the Cold War, and especially during the long period of conservative rule. As the long countdown to the Iraq war began, Australia's intelligence apparatus seemed to be stable and harmonious, and more professional than it had ever been, but there were undercurrents of tension.
A dialogue with Islam as a pattern of conflict resolution and a security approach vis-à-vis Islamism
In this chapter Islamism is viewed as a variety of religious fundamentalism. The religion of Islam must be differentiated from the many varieties of Islamism as political ideology. In view of the developments in the post-bipolar Middle East, there is a clear connection between fundamentalism and security. Domestic and regional stability in the southern Mediterranean is needed, and the Islamization of politics is viewed as a security threat to peace in this region. Samuel Huntington recognizes what is termed the 'cultural turn' in seeing how cultures and civilizations play an increasingly important role in international politics. The major problem with his approach is that he believes civilizations can engage in world political conflicts. The chapter focuses on the attitudes of Islamic fundamentalists vis-a-vis the Arab-Israeli peace process. It examines the impact of the working hypothesis on the negative connection between peace and Islamism in the case of the Maghreb.
This chapter examines the concept of security through discursive contestation at the leadership level in a critical Middle Eastern case, that of Israel. It examines the specific discourses of security employed by opposing political groups during key periods in the history of the Arab-Israeli conflict. The chapter argues that failure to resolve the fundamental dispute among Palestinians and Israelis stems directly from the victory during the 1950s of the more hard-line militaristic Israeli approach towards state security and development. It discusses the shortcomings of a systemic or structural realist approach to the question of the Palestinian-Israeli peace. The chapter establishes a historical basis for the dispute between Israeli militarism and moderation with a focus on the critical period of the early to mid-1950s. It assesses the contemporary implications of the doctrines of militarism and moderation with regard to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict during the 1990s.