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The Challenge of Talking about Terrorism: The EU and the Arab Debate on the Causes of Islamist Terrorism

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Hartmut Behr, Dr Lars Berger


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The Arab "hegemonic debate" on the causes of Islamist terrorism nurtures (pan-) Arab, anti-Western sentiments and delegitimizes criticism of the political status quo. The European Union's emphasis on multilateral means of conflict resolution and trade promotion leads to official pronouncements that barely address the Arab world's domestic problems, instead referring to international tensions such as the Arab-Israeli conflict as a particular cause of Islamist terrorism and the need for cooperation with Arab governments. By failing to challenge the official narratives of authoritarian Arab regimes the EU obstructs interests in the democratization of the region and the delegitimization of Islamist violence. © Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Behr H, Berger L

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Terrorism and Political Violence

Year: 2009

Volume: 21

Issue: 4

Pages: 539-557

Online publication date: 11/09/2009

ISSN (print): 0954-6553

ISSN (electronic): 1556-1836

Publisher: Routledge


DOI: 10.1080/09546550903153001


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