The “First War on Terrorism?”: Recommended Reading

September 30, 2014

WOTR contributor Bill Rosenau of the CNA Corporation’s Center for Strategic Studies has an exciting new report on “the forgotten history of counterterrorism in the United States during the 1970s and early 1980s.” It is called The “First War on Terrorism?” U.S. Domestic Counterterrorism During the 1970s and Early 1980s.

Lest you think this report will be a dry read, it contains the phrase “topless blackjack dealer in a San Francisco nightclub” in reference to a member of the Symbionese Liberation Army. Yes, this is when terrorists had a bit more sex appeal than today’s glum fanatics who envelop themselves in black while wreaking havoc across the Middle East. Lurid descriptions aside, Rosenau is one of the more thoughtful and serious analysts I’ve ever known. He offers, in this report, a serious and historically informed assessment of a period that has more relevance to our current counter-terrorism efforts than you might think.

Read the report here.


Image: FBI, PBS