• Terrorism & social mediaUsing social media to weaken impact of terrorist attacks

    Governments and police forces around the world need to beware of the harm caused by mass and social media following terror events. In a new report, leading counter-terrorism experts from around the world offer guidance to authorities to better manage the impacts of terror attacks by harnessing media communication. “People only know what they see or read, so the immediate panic social media – and then on the news – perpetuates rumors and creates fear. This is exactly what terrorists want,” says one expert.

  • Chemical weaponsPreventing chemical weapons as sciences advance and converge

    Revolutionary advances in science and technology are threatening the ability of the Chemical Weapons Convention to prevent the development, possession and potential use of chemical weapons. Scientists warn of this increased chemical weapons risk, which is the result of rapid scientific change. Alarming examples of the dangers from chemical weapons have been seen recently in the use of industrial chemicals and the nerve agent sarin against civilians in Syria, and in the targeted assassination operations using VX nerve agent in Malaysia and novichok nerve agent in the U.K.

  • HateRussian Duma approves bill softening punishment for first-time hate-crime offenders

    Russia’s lower house of parliament has approved the first reading of a bill softening the punishment in some cases for inciting hatred, amid concerns over prison terms handed down to people for “liking” or reposting memes on the Internet. The draft bill discussed on 15 November would remove the possibility of a prison sentence for first-time offenders found to have incited ethnic, religious, and other forms of hatred and discord in public, including in the media or on the Internet.

  • HateScotland Yard investigating anti-Semitism in British Labour Party ranks

    The Scotland Yard is investigating many instances of anti-Semitism among the rank and file of the British Labour Party since Jeremy Corbyn took over the party’s leadership in 2015. The Scotland Yard’s dossier, which was leaked to the press, consists of 80 pages of allegations about the Labour Party’s anti-Semitism, including Holocaust denial. Statements attributed to party members include “We shall rid the Jews who are cancer on us all” and “Zionist extremist MP who hates civilized people about to get a good kicking.”

  • HateHate crimes jumped 17 percent: FBI

    Newly released FBI data showed hate crimes in the U.S. jumped 17 percent in 2017 with a 37 percent spike in crimes targeting Jews and Jewish institutions. The FBI, in its annual Hate Crime Statistics Act (HCSA) report, said there were 7,175 hate crimes in 2017. The 17 percent jump was three times more than the 5 percent increase the agency reported in 2016.

  • HateWomen’s March award rescinded by German NGO due to anti-Semitism

    A German think tank rescinded a human rights award it had planned to present to the Women’s March movement on grounds that the latter group holds anti-Semitic views. In a letter, a working group of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, which is associated with Germany’s Social Democratic Party, announced that it would not present the award to Women’s March USA on grounds that the group failed to meet its criteria.

  • HateHow extremist candidates fared in the midterms

    The 2018 midterms were not kind to most of the country’s extremist and bigoted candidates, but a number of them did garner disturbingly high vote counts. More than 1.8 million Americans voted for known extremists and bigots who were running for national offices. In races for the U.S. Senate and U.S. House, extremists pulled in, on average, 29 percent of the vote. The extremists’ sole winner of the night was U.S. Rep. Steve King (R-IA), whose reelection prospects appeared briefly dimmed by his embrace of overtly white nationalist rhetoric. King beat back a strong Democratic challenger to keep his seat in Iowa’s 4th Congressional District. He won his 9th term with 50.4 percent of the vote.

  • Religious conflictAI systems: Understanding and controlling religious conflict

    Artificial intelligence can help us to better understand the causes of religious violence and to potentially control it, according to a new research. The study is one of the first to be published that uses psychologically realistic AI – as opposed to machine learning.

  • RadicalizationWhy do some Muslim clerics become jihadists? Answer: blocked ambition

    By Peter Dizikes

    What turns people into radical jihadist clerics? A new book by MIT political scientist Richard Nielsen offers a new answer: thwarted career ambitions. More specifically, the book finds, a certain portion of Muslim clerics who end up advocating for jihad — war against Islam’s foes — started out as mainstream clerics looking for state-sponsored jobs where they could use their intellectual training, only to become unemployed, disenchanted, and radicalized.

  • TerrorismThere is almost no research on what distinguishes potential terrorists

    A recent analysis of the existing research on factors associated with an individual’s risk for engaging in terrorist activity highlights how little we know about these factors and the need for additional research in this area.

  • TerrorismTerrorism studies and the struggle for primary data

    By Bart Schuurman

    If research can only be as good as the data on which it is based, then the study of terrorism has been in serious trouble for decades. From the 1980s to the present-day, many of the field’s most influential scholars have lamented that a majority of articles rely on literature-review based methodologies and do not present any new, first-hand insights. As a result, much of what we know about terrorists and terrorism has been derived from media sources – sometimes brilliant accounts that provide fascinating insights, but often short newspaper pieces of questionable accuracy and limited level of detail.

  • HatePittsburgh synagogue shooter Robert Bower had links to British far right

    Robert Bowers, 46, who killed eleven worshippers at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pennsylvania on 27 October, was in touch with neo-Nazis in Britain who share the same brand of conspiracy theories that Jews control the world and that Jewish financier George Soros is funding immigration to the United States and Europe. British security sources, who shared the information with the Times, note that this apparent collaboration comes against the backdrop of heightened concerns in Britain about the level of right-wing extremist activity as MI5 takes on an increasing role in countering the threat.

  • HateAnti-Semitic preacher Farrakhan goes to Iran, leads “Death to America” chants

    Hate preacher Louis Farrakhan, on a solidarity trip to Iran ahead of the re-imposition of United States sanctions on the clerical regime, led chants of “Death to America” and “Death to Israel.” The Nation of Islam leader spoke at the University of Tehran law school, where he praised women’s rights in Iran and the Islamic laws mandating that they cover themselves. Leaders of the Women’s March, including Linda Sarsour and Tamika Mallory, support Farrakhan and have appeared at Nation of Islam events, which promote hatred of Jews.

  • HateScotland Yard on Labour Party anti-Semitism: “There may have been a crime committed”

    Scotland Yard has opened a criminal investigation into allegations of anti-Semitic hate crime in the Labour Party. Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick said it “appears there may have been a crime committed.” The police said in a statement that special officers had spent two months assessing a leaked Labour Party dossier detailing 45 cases of alleged anti-Semitism and are now working with the Crown Prosecution Service on the investigation. The dossier contains over 80 pages of anti-Semitic statements of Labour Party members, including Holocaust denial.

  • Mass shootingsPittsburgh trauma surgeon: “Stop the Bleed” training saved lives after shooting, but stopping the need must be next

    By Matthew D. Neal

    I am a trauma surgeon who cared for many of the critically wounded victims of the Tree of Life synagogue shooting. As we raced to find the source of blood loss in one of the most severely injured patients, one of my trauma surgeon partners, a U.S. Army veteran of multiple tours, joined me in the operating room to assist. His first comment upon seeing the injuries that we were managing struck me. He said he last saw such destruction from military weaponry when he was serving in Afghanistan.