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Peter S. Henne

blog post on religious freedom and counterterrorism/media blurb/UVM orientation

Posted: July 6th, 2017 by phenne

Summer’s been pretty busy, so I am a bit late on updating things.

First, I had a blog post as part of the Religious Freedom Institute’s Cornerstone Blog series on religious freedom and counterterrorism. I drew from my book to discuss how differing levels of religious freedom affected counterterrorism, arguing there are some trade-offs in the short-term but in the long-term promoting religious freedom will help undermine terrorism. Two other experts in this subject also weighed in, so check out their posts too.

I also talked with a reporter from the Associated Press about T.E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia). Lawrence had a famous Rolls Royce he used to drive into Damascus in 1918, and a military historian thought he discovered some of its secrets. I weighed in about Lawrence’s legacy for the Middle East. You can find the story here.

Finally, I helped out with the UVM’s summer orientation for incoming first-year students, working with new Political Science majors as they registered for classes. It was exciting to meet some of my new students, and I’m looking forward to teaching them in the fall.

new blog post on the UAE and the Qatar crisis

Posted: June 13th, 2017 by phenne

I recently published a blog post on Medium about the currently expanding Qatar crisis. Drawing on my book, I discuss some of the UAE’s potential motivations for its role in the crisis, and how this can help us resolve tensions. You can read it here. Comments are welcome.

new blog post on Syria air strikes and just war

Posted: April 7th, 2017 by phenne

I have a new blog post out today on Trump’s air strikes against Syria, in which I discuss these strikes in the context of just war theory. You can find it here.

new podcast discussing my work on religious conflict

Posted: April 4th, 2017 by phenne

I have an article forthcoming in the Journal of Conflict Resolution co-authored with Jason Klocek, a doctoral candidate at UC-Berkeley. The article combines our research programs, and looks at how religious conflict influences religious repression using a quantitative analysis. We find that earlier religious conflict increases regime’s sense of threat from religious groups, so they respond by limiting the freedom of religion broadly in society. I’ll post a link to the article once it is out.

My co-author spoke recently with Research on Religion, and excellent podcast series that presents discussions of new work in the study of religion. Jason had a good conversation with Tony Gill, a professor at the University of Washington who hosts the program. You can listen here.


new piece on foreign aid and counterterrorism

Posted: March 21st, 2017 by phenne

I had a blog post today on Political Violence at a Glance’s “Denver Dialogues” forum. This is an effort to connect policymakers and academics working on different areas of political violence. My post argues that cuts to foreign aid may undermine US counterterrorism efforts, based on findings from my book.

my book on religion and counterterrorism is now out

Posted: March 6th, 2017 by phenne

My first book, Islamic Politics, Muslim States and Counterterrorism Tensionshas just been released by Cambridge University Press. I look at how Islamic politics influenced Muslim states’ relationships with the United States on counterterrorism through a statistical analysis of all majority-Muslim states and in-depth case studies of Pakistan, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.

I find that religion did influence the extent to which Muslim states cooperated with America on counterterrorism, but it did so in a subtle way. Religion mattered through interaction with differing political institutions. When Islam and the state were closely intertwined, Muslim states were less able to ignore domestic Islamic opposition to working with the United States. Looking across all majority-Muslim states, this religion-state relationship mattered more  than many other potential explanations for cooperation with America–like a history of conflict or aid from the United States.

The book can expand our understanding of how religion influences international relations, by pointing to the important interaction between institutional ties to the state and religious contention. It also contributes to work on counterterrorism policy and the history of the US Global War on Terrorism.

Additionally, in the book’s conclusion I apply my argument to the events of the Arab Spring, the fight against the Islamic State terrorist group, and political changes in Turkey. This can help extend my findings to current events of crucial importance to policymakers.

The book is available through the publishers, as well as through Amazon (including a Kindle version).

heading to ISA

Posted: February 21st, 2017 by phenne

I’m flying to Baltimore, MD this week to attend the International Studies Association annual meeting. I’ll be presenting new research on Saturday, which looks at the ways states’ policies towards religion influence terrorist targeting. I found that states favoring a certain religion over others leads terrorist groups to launch more attacks against religious sites, as these sites become politicized and the focus on debates in society. This is my part of broader research on religion and political violence.

I will also be attending events held by the Religion and International Relations section (of which I am the secretary). We’ll be having our business meeting, a roundtable honoring our distinguished scholar award, and our reception on Friday.

new blog post on Yemen

Posted: February 7th, 2017 by phenne

I wrote a new blog post on the Huffington Post about US policy towards Yemen. This is an area I’ve been following for some time. The post discusses some of my thoughts on why we should be wary of expanded involvement in the country. You can read more here.

Spring 2017 Registration

Posted: November 17th, 2016 by phenne

Registration for Spring 2017 courses is currently ongoing (information can be found here). I will be teaching one large section of Introduction to International Relations in the spring; you can find more information on the course here . Any students who have issues registering should feel free to contact me.

Undeclared Week at UVM CAS

Posted: October 7th, 2016 by phenne

Undeclared week is coming up at UVM College of Arts and Sciences. During the week of 10/31, the University is hosting lots of great events for undeclared students to help them figure out which major or majors to choose. This includes the opportunity to sit in on 100-level classes to get a sense for the major. There are some great Political Science courses open for undeclared students to visit, including my course on the International Politics of the Middle East. I’m looking forward to meeting some undeclared students and helping them learn about the study of Political Science.

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