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The Assault on Liberty


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Polemic on the state of civil liberties and human rights in Britain today from 42 day detention to ASBOs. From 42 days detention to ASBOs, as citizens of modern Britain we are seeing some of our fundamental freedoms being pawned off cheaply in the name of security. At the same time, a whole range of novel, and comparatively trivial, rights are being handed out like sweets. Why? In the last 10 years the government has launched an unprecedented assault on our civil liberties. The loss of basic liberties has been replaced by a litany of new rights and the emergence of a new rights culture without any meaningful democratic oversight. This assault, and the parallel proliferation of rights, has warped the moral compass that guided the idea of fundamental rights throughout British history. But in whose name and to what end? In The Assault on Liberty, a radical polemic on the state of the nation, Dominic Raab, Chief of Staff to the Shadow Home Secretary, asks whether we can really defend our freedom by sacrificing it. The risks to Britain are real and likely to grow unless unchecked. Raab argues that the long-term risk is that the current approach will undermine the credibility of, and public support for, the very idea of fundamental rights in this country. He concludes that it is only a modern Bill of Rights that would offer a precious opportunity to review and repair our approach to rights, one of the pillars of our liberal democracy and would place these fundamental liberties in the correct context of the challenges facing Britain and its citizens in the 21st century. / international and very well connected author /Far-reaching polemic on the state of civil liberties in Britain today. / First book to look in detail at the state of civil liberties and right in 21st century Britain / Guaranteed newspaper, radio and TV coverage with media storm on publication. / Competition: The Breaking of Nations Robert Cooper) Paradise and Power by Robert Kagan What's Left by Nick Cohen The Triumph of the Political Class by Peter Oborne

About the Author

Dominic Raab was formerly Chief of Staff to David Davis, before he resigned as Shadow Home Secretary and MP to contest his seat on principle over the 42 day detention bill. He studied law at Oxford and international law at Cambridge, where he was awarded the Clive-Parry Prize for International Law. In 1998, he studied the Arab-Israeli peace process on the West Bank and worked for one of the negotiators of the Oslo peace process. He was seconded to Liberty, as the Human Rights Act entered into force, and advised on human rights test cases in the UK and at the European Court of Human Rights. He has also advised on EU law, including on secondment to Brussels. He currently runs the Office of the Shadow Home Secretary and advises on all areas of Home Affairs policy, including crime, policing, immigration, counter-terrorism and human rights.


A clear-headed and important contribution to our contemporary predicament from one of the most brilliant young political minds of our time. Dominic Raab has disentangled what the idea of rights means, and what it does not mean. This book will reframe the analysis and discussion in this vital area. Peter Oborne

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