• 9/11 attacks merged U.S. immigration and terrorism efforts at Latinos' expense: Study

    After September 11, issues of immigration and terrorism merged, heightening surveillance and racializing Latino immigrants as a threat to national security, according to researchers. Latino immigration in the United States has long sparked passionate debates, with Latinos often racialized as “illegal aliens” posing an economic threat. But following the al-Qaeda-led terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, the fear of another attack, coupled with Islamophobia, streamlined immigration agendas with anti-terrorism rhetoric, policies, and institutional efforts, racializing Latinos in a new way, the researchers said.

  • U.K. to ban hate preachers from mosques, universities, public speaking to tackle radicalization

    U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May is developing plans to bar Islamist hate preachers from entering mosques and universities in order to prevent a repetition of the campaign conducted by Anjem Choudary to radicalize young Britons. Experts say that Choudary’s nearly 20-year campaign of hate, incitement, and radicalization had exposed the limits of current anti-terror laws. Choudary was found to be connected to fifteen terror plots since 2000 and to more than 500 British jihadists who traveled to Syria to fight in ISIS ranks. He had also been active spreading his extremist Islamist message on social media and on college campuses.

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  • Of immigrants and terrorists

    In a speech on Monday at Youngstown State University in Ohio, Donald Trump continued to modify his approach to immigration: Rather than bar all Muslims from entering the United States, or bar Muslims from conflict-saturated regions of the world, he said he would bar immigration from countries “compromised” by terrorism. These proposals, however, have little, if anything, to do with preventing acts of terrorism in the United States or making the United States safer.

  • U.S. nuclear weapons in Turkey at risk of seizure by terrorists, hostile forces

    The continued presence of dozens of U.S. B61 nuclear weapons at Incirlik Air Base in Turkey raises serious risks of their seizure by terrorists and other hostile forces, a new report says. These weapons no longer serve any military purpose, and ending B61 presence in Europe would save $3.7 billion over five years.

  • U.S. social media strategy can use Twitter more effectively to weaken ISIS influence

    Opponents of ISIS and Syria are six times greater in number on Twitter than ISIS supporters, but those sympathetic to the group are more active on the social media platform, according to a new RAND Corporation study. The researchers, analyzing more than twenty-three million tweets posted in Arabic over a 10-month period, found that, on average, supporters of ISIS produce 50 percent more tweets than opponents on a typical day, although there is evidence that ISIS opponents are increasing their activity.

  • The political role of drone strikes in U.S. grand strategy

    Years of debate on the issue of U.S. drone strikes show that many Americans have reservations. People are concerned that drone strikes devalue non-American lives, dangerously expand executive power, and drive terrorism and anti-Americanism. The concerns Americans have about these kinds of drone attacks – apparently unilateral, apparently violating the norm of state sovereignty, and conducted without a formal justice process — reflect well on a public wondering what the U.S. role in the world should be. But assessing the value of drone strikes requires looking beyond the attacks themselves to first identify and prioritize U.S. interests and threats. Only in that context is it possible to decide whether one supports or opposes drone strikes for what they may gain the United States politically.

  • Managing terrorism risk more complicated today

    Managing terrorism risk today requires a combination of strategies and tactics that protect people, property, and finances. On the financial side, the choice is whether to retain or transfer the risk via insurance. But the changing pattern of terrorism risk has some companies questioning whether they are adequately insured for business interruption and related losses. And they wonder how to prepare for potential losses from cyber terrorism and other events. 

  • CENTCOM’s assessment of U.S. anti-ISIS efforts too rosy: Congressional panel

    A congressional joint task force (JTF) investigating allegations of intelligence manipulation at U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) last week released an initial report detailing persistent problems in 2014 and 2015 with CENTCOM analysis of U.S. efforts to train the Iraqi Security Forces and combat ISIS in Iraq and Syria. The JTF found that intelligence products approved by senior CENTCOM leaders typically provided a more positive depiction of U.S. antiterrorism efforts than was warranted by facts on the ground and were consistently more positive than analysis produced by other elements of the intelligence community.

  • The rise of a cyberterror community is on the horizon

    A social psychologist who is also a cybersecurity experts says that the rise of a cyber terror community is on the horizon. The researcher believes that this new community may be the logical next step in the development of our digital world. “The magnitude of potential damage for a cyberattack is remarkable, and the number of targets for a cyber terrorist attack is amazingly large,” he said. “The chance of getting caught are very small, and some of the resources to complete the crime are very easy to obtain — not to mention the potential for getting away with it is very high.”

  • North African Islamist terrorists dig up Nazi mines for use in IEDs

    ISIS and its affiliate organization in North Africa have found a new source for munition materials: Digging up old landmines from the Second World War and using them to fashion IEDs for terrorist attacks. The retreating German forces under the command of Field Marshal Erwin Rommel buried about seventeen million landmines under the surface in western Egypt and north-east Libya.

  • Hundreds of U.K. teenagers still want to fight in ISIS ranks in Syria

    Kadiza Sultana, a 17-year old Briton who traveled to Syria in February 2015 to join ISIS, was killed two weeks ago by a Russian airstrike on Raqqa, the informal capital of ISIS. Still, experts say that hundreds of British teenage girls are keen on joining ISIS. This reality has raised questions about the effectiveness of the British government’s approach to counter-radicalism.

  • Reducing terrorist recruitment by countering terrorist narratives

    Recruiters for violent extremist groups, just like screenwriters and marketers, use storytelling techniques to craft their messages. Analyzing those narratives and producing counter-narratives may be one way to cut the success of terrorist recruitment, according to researchers. “No matter what the context is — whether it’s terrorism or health communication or organizational communication — the principles of persuasion all operate the same,” say a researcher.

  • ISIS ranks in Syria, Iraq “decimated,” with only 15,000 fighters left: U.S. commander

    The number of ISIS fighters in Iraq and Syria has been substantially reduced by an effective U.S.-led military campaigns, leaving as few as 15,000 militants to fight, a senior U.S. commander said. Not only has the estimated number of ISIS fighters shrunk from earlier estimates of between 19,000 and 25,000, but the U.S. commander said that the quality of ISIS fighters has decreased. “The enemy is in retreat on all fronts,” Lieutenant General Sean MacFarland said.

  • Patterns of ISIS-related terrorism, 2002-2015

    Between 2002 and 2015, more than 4,900 terrorist attacks were carried out by groups or organizations affiliated with ISIS. These attacks caused more than 33,000 deaths and 41,000 injuries. These attacks represented 13 percent of all terrorist attacks worldwide and, 26 percent of all deaths, and 28 percent of all injuries due to terrorism during the same time period.

  • Germany to search refugees' phones to establish identity, spot suspicious connections

    German interior minister Thomas de Maizière will next week announce a new German anti-terror steps, which, among other things, will require refugees and asylum-seekers arriving in Germany without a passport to surrender their smartphones – and all the passwords and security pin numbers associated with the phones – so German security agencies could check the owners’ social media accounts. The security services in Denmark, Norway, Sweden, and the Netherlands already routinely examine refugees’ mobile phones to establish a refugee’s identity.