U.S. Terrorist List System Constrains Peacebuilding Efforts

The Supreme Court’s recent ruling on Holder v. Humanitarian Law Project tightens the straightjacket that our current terrorist list system has placed on American diplomats and social scientists. In a 6-3 decision, the court ruled that the First Amendment does not protect groups or individuals who provide “expert advice or assistance” or “training” for pacific means to proscribed terrorist groups. For non-governmental peacebuilding groups that conduct workshops and promote dialogue as critical elements of their work, this decision is catastrophic. Now, even individuals who, through direct communication, urge proscribed terrorist groups to disarm and participate in negotiations are vulnerable to […]

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