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Growth and Uncertainty: The Impact of 9/11 on Intelligence and National Security Studies

  • Joseph FitsanakisEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

It can be argued that few academic disciplines have been affected by the dramatic events of 9/11 as directly as Intelligence and National Security Studies (INSS). The latter used to be a strictly graduate endeavor, with much of the relevant instruction hidden under thick layers of classification. However, the insecurity fears resulting from the 9/11 attacks prompted an unprecedented growth in the field and accelerated its development in the undergraduate domain. Ironically, the remarkable academic vibrancy of INSS in our century has been overshadowed by the marginalization of the field in the realm of government. There is mounting evidence that the role of intelligence in national decision-making has reached unprecedented lows. At the same time, the intense post-9/11 scholarly preoccupation with Islamic-inspired extremism appears to have developed at the expense of other notable threats to the homeland. There are reasons to believe that the tacit association of terrorism with foreigners, and Muslims in particular, may be distracting American INSS scholars from studying the growth of domestic far-right militancy. Also ignored are security threats posed by the increasingly unregulated domestic gun market, which are statistically far more dangerous than the phenomenon of Islamic extremism in the domestic field. Finally, this chapter argues that INSS scholars were caught unprepared by the post-9/11 emergence of a wholesale model of mass surveillance—both domestic and international—that is slowly changing the relationship between state and civil society in America and is affecting America’s relations with its foreign allies.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Coastal Carolina UniversityConwayUSA

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