In impressive and often fascinating detail, she documents that the boundaries between war and peace have grown so hazy as to undermine hard-won global gains in human rights and the rule of law ... Brooks writes with clarity and epigrammatic wit, but the random oscillations of her views may annoy some readers. Can’t she make up her mind? Of course, she can. She is not one of those best who lack all conviction. Her honesty in the admission of second and third thoughts is a rebuke to the multitudes who can no longer remember that the Iraq war they denounce is the one they endorsed.
...lively, informed, and insightful new book … Brooks has made a fresh and useful argument, but she carries it too far. I would not give up on the basic distinction between war and law enforcement, because to a very significant extent, at least under Obama, that argument was won in favor of the requirements of law enforcement, which are more protective of rights … But it may still be worth using Brooks’s argument to secure whatever additional safeguards we can from those who would continue to rely on war standards to counter terrorism. I would rephrase her argument not as a substitute for the ‘category problem’ she identifies of distinguishing between war and peace but as a supplement to it.