Advancing a Free Society

The Best Defense

Thursday, April 15, 2010

After 9/11, President Bush announced that he would do whatever was necessary to prevent future terrorist attacks against the United States. Following the lead of several countries that had recently come to similar conclusions after their own bitter experiences—including India, Israel, Japan, Russia, Spain, and the United Kingdom—the United States tightened its immigration laws; increased the protection of its borders, ports, and infrastructure; criminalized the providing of “material support” for terrorist groups; and tore down the wall between the intelligence and law enforcement agencies that had crippled counterterrorist efforts for decades. Washington did not authorize preventive detention, as other countries had, but it used other measures to hold people against whom criminal charges could not be brought—thereby preventing terrorist attacks. The U.S. government also led or joined various international efforts aimed at warding off new dangers, such as the Proliferation Security Initiative, through which more than seventy states cooperate to interdict the movement of nuclear materials across international borders.

Continue reading this article in the Hoover Digest…