2nd Edition

A Citizen's Guide to Terrorism and Counterterrorism

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after December 31, 2020
ISBN 9780367486501
December 31, 2020 Forthcoming by Routledge

USD $42.95

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Book Description

Written for the American citizen, this is a "brief" on the problem of terrorism and its newest developments, including the evolution of the Islamist threat and the rise of right-wing racism within our borders and overseas.  In a departure from other volumes written for a broad audience, Harmon also focuses on counterterrorism, closely surveying the major tools now in use—or recommended—for responding to terrorism today, such as intelligence, diplomacy with partner countries, policing, economic sanctions, and targeted force. A chapter on the published national strategy shows the continuity and change across presidential administrations.    

New to the Second Edition 

  • Adds coverage of the Islamic State, explained in terms of its character, rise, and relative collapse under Coalition pressures.   
  • Focuses on the growing right-wing terrorist threat, domestically as well as internationally. 
  • Covers additional schools of militancy including anarchism; variants of communism and especially Maoist insurgency; and the Iranian/Shia terrorist threat throughout the Middle East and Europe, among others. 
  • Analyzes  published White House strategy for countering terrorism.    

Table of Contents

Part I: The Threat. 

1. We Americans Remain Vulnerable to Terrorist Attack

2. The Nature of the Enemy Today. Part II: The Strategy.

3. Components of our Grand Strategy: Diplomacy, Intelligence, Economics, Law & Law-making, the Military. 

4. The Current Published Counterterrorism Strategy.

Part III: The Future.

5. What Needs to be Done.

6. What Citizens Can Do.

7. How Other Terrorist Groups Have Been Defeated. Additional Resources.

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Christopher C. Harmon wrote his dissertation on terrorism in Western Europe in the early 1980s and has been advancing terrorism studies with new publications ever since. He is the principal author or editor of six books, including Terrorism Today--which the Times Literary Supplement reviewed as "a masterly survey of the big picture of world violence."

Essays by Dr. Harmon have appeared in the geopolitics journal Orbis, Small Wars and Insurgencies, Terrorism & Political Violence, Marine Corps University Journal, Strategic Studies Quarterly, and the U.S. government periodical Combating Terrorism Exchange, a meeting place for professionals in the field. In 2018, with Navy Captain (ret.) Randall G. Bowdish, PhD, he published a volume for prestigious think-tank The Brookings Institution, titled The Terrorist Argument: Modern Advocacy and Propaganda. Harmon serves on editorial boards for two journals on terrorism and counterterrorism.

Opportunities to lecture overseas have taken Dr. Harmon to 15 countries and to U.S. military bases. In Lyon France at Interpol headquarters he addressed his primary research subject of the years 2003 – 2010, "How Terrorist Groups End." Chris has designed and taught terrorism courses at many American graduate schools, civilian and military, such as the Institute of World Politics (Washington, D.C.) and the Naval War College (Newport, RI). Harmon is the only person to have directed counterterrorism studies programs for foreign professionals at both the George C. Marshall European Center for Security Studies and the Daniel K. Inoue Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies, both managed by the U.S.

For many years a Professor of International Relations at Marine Corps University, Christopher C. Harmon is now back in Quantico Virginia, teaching and writing as a Bren Chair for the university, its Brute Krulak Center for Innovation and Creativity, and the Marine Corps University Foundation.


Praise for A Citizen’s Guide to Terrorism and Counterterrorism, Second Edition

This timely book from brilliant teacher-scholar Christopher C.Harmon offers a lot: a concise overview of the terrorist threat to the U.S., a detailed analysis of our counterterrorism strategy, a useful explanation of how terrorist groups have been defeated, and important recommendations for what needs to be done, and by whom (including citizens), to confront the threat of terrorism more successfully. Overall engaging, accessible and useful to a wide audience, this is highly recommended reading.

-- James Forest, University of Massachusetts Lowell and co-editor of the journal Perspectives on Terrorism.

Dr. Harmon has done it again. Having endorsed the first edition--which was so valuable to our citizenry--I can guarantee readers will find this new edition to have the very best qualities of a book on public affairs. We begin with a current and deeply informed account of terrorism today, inside America and beyond our borders. Then we see a rich description of America’s national strategy for fighting back, assessment of how it is going, and suggestions about what citizens can do to help."

Ambassador J. D. Crouch II, former Deputy National Security Advisor to the President

In a time when even the most basic of facts are disputed, understanding today’s terrorism seems an impossible task. Fortunately, this revised edition of Chris Harmon’s A Citizen’s Guide to Terrorism and Counterterrorism is as helpful as it is comprehensive. A masterful and heartfelt call for citizens everywhere to be better informed about the perennial threat of violent extremism.

--John Horgan, Georgia State University and editor of the journal Terrorism and Political Violence