Winner of the 2007 Paul Guggenheim Prize! Today's terrorists possess unprecedented power, but the State still plays a crucial role in the success or failure of their plans. Terrorists count on governmental inaction, toleration or support. And citizens look to the State to protect them from the dangers that these terrorists pose. But the rules of international law that regulate State responsibility for preventing terrorism were crafted for a different age. They are open to abuse and poorly suited to hold States accountable for sponsoring or tolerating contemporary terrorist activity. It is time that these rules were reconceived. Tal Becker's incisive and ground-breaking book analyses the law of State responsibility for non-State violence and examines its relevance in a world coming to terms with the threat of catastrophic terrorism. The book sets out the legal duties of States to prevent, and abstain from supporting, terrorist activity and explores how to maximise State compliance with these obligations.
Drawing on a wealth of precedents and legal sources, the book offers an innovative approach to regulating State responsibility for terrorism, inspired by the principles and philosophy of causation. In so doing, it presents a new conceptual and legal framework for dealing with the complex interactions between State and non-State actors that make terrorism possible, and offers a way to harness international law to enhance human security in a post-9/11 world. black & white illustrations