In grappling with the terrorist threat, states, together with security agencies and governmental bodies rely upon neo-Orientalist constructions of Islam to detect symptoms of the 'known' terrorist that legitimate counter-radicalization policies. Drawing on a governmentality perspective, the thesis unpacks the genealogy of terrorism to elucidate how the terms 'radical' and 'radicalization' have both rendered operative the social construction of risk encircling violence. The thesis argues that the emerging practice of counter-radicalization as a technology of risk has resulted in a permanent state of insecurity. Consequently, in the alleged War on Terror, certain groups are protected and 'Others' subject to scrutiny and stigmatization, particularly Muslims. The thesis analyzes counter-radicalization in the emerging War on Terror, arguing that its pre-emptive logic legitimates the managing of risks based on future threats. It is posited that a shift from a pre-emptive approach to happening or substantively-developed threats might eschew managing future risks.