The war on terror has created trepidation among the champions of human rights, international law and ‘non-state actors’ (such as international organizations and non-governmental organizations, or NGOs). They fear that their past political gains are now being rolled back by a reinvigorated politics of state security, based on military conquest, the trampling of human rights and the subversion of international law and cooperation. One of the leading proponents of global civil society, Mary Kaldor, has poignantly expressed this sentiment:

Will we look back on the last decade as the ‘happy Nineties’? Was it an interregnum between global conflicts when utopian ideas like global civil society, human rights, a global rule of law, or global social justice seemed possible? Or was it, on another interpretation, the moment when global civil society came of age?1