• The “blind spot” in extremist Web content

    In order better to understand the process of on-line radicalization, researchers examined the average monthly number of global searches and regional search frequencies conducted in Google for 287 Arabic and English keywords relating to violent and non-violent extremism. Further analysis was then conducted within the search results for forty-seven of the relevant keywords to understand placement of extremist and counter-narrative content.

  • Risk of student radicalization in Quebec low

    A new survey of CEGEP students found that the risk of violent radicalization among Quebec youth remains “very weak,” while incidents of racism and hate speech remain common. CEGEP is a network of publicly funded pre‑university colleges in the province of Quebec’s education system – similar to U.S. community colleges.

  • Paris venue of Victoria's Secret December show kept secret for fear of terrorism

    Victoria’s Secret officials admitted they were worried about a possible terrorist attack during their 5 December 2016 Fashion Show in Paris. The lingerie company typically announces its annual runway show in the spring of each year — but this year the company waited until Monday, 24 October, to announce this year’s location. Several venues in Paris were considered, until one was selected because the French security services concluded it would be easier to secure.

  • Bavaria wants tighter monitoring of Reichsbürger movement extremists

    The government of the state of Bavaria wants the German federal government to monitor the far-right Reichsbürger movement more closely. The movement resembles the American sovereign citizen movement: It does not recognize the authority of the government in Berlin, and challenge the legality of the German political structure. The Reichsbürger claims that the last legitimate German government was the one elected in November 1932 – and which made Hitler chancellor on 30 January 1933 – and that all German governments since the surrender of Germany on 7 May 1945 have been illegitimate.

  • Germany's far-right, populist, xenophobic movements on the rise

    There have been many extremist right-wing, nationalist, populist, racist, anti-Semitic, anti-immigration groups and movements in Germany (and, earlier, West Germany). Currently, the German intelligence and law enforcement agencies are monitoring about three dozen groups, associations, fellowships, movements, open networks, and organized political parties. The German authorities say there are 22,600 registered members of right-wing extremist groups in Germany, and that 8,000 of them have proven themselves ready to use violence.

  • ISIL uses toxic chemicals in its defense of Mosul

    In the run up to the U.S.-led coalition campaign to liberate Mosul, U.S. officials warned that ISIS would likely use chemical weapons to slow down the progress of coalition forces and terrorize the residents. Last Thursday ISIS took the first step in its chemical strategy by setting ablaze the Mishraq Chemical plant and sulphur mine, located thirty km south of Mosul. The toxic cloud includes lethal sulphur dioxide and hydrogen sulphide. When combined with residue from burning oil wells, it is deadly for people caught in the open or without gas masks. Military experts say health effects from the toxic fumes from oil and sulphur will likely subside in about eighteen months, but the toxic clouds could harm much of the plant and animal life in the area and make it difficult for local farmers to return to their fields until then.

  • Refugees and terrorism -- “No evidence of risk”: UN

    “Overly-restrictive migration policies introduced because of terrorism concerns are not justified and may in fact be damaging to state security,” warned the United Nations Special Rapporteur on counter-terrorism and human rights, Ben Emmerson, at the UN General Assembly in New York. The perception that there is a link between to flow of refugees and an increased risk of terrorism “is analytically and statistically unfounded, and must change,” he said.

  • Argentina requests extradition of former Iranian FM for role in 1994 Jewish Center bombing

    Argentina has requested the extradition of Iran’s former foreign minister due to his alleged role in the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish center in Buenos Aries. Argentinian authorities suspect five senior Iranian officials, including Ali Akbar Velayati and former president Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, of being involved in the bombing, which killed eighty-five people and is the deadliest-ever terror attack on Argentinian soil.

  • Funding for broad spectrum prophylaxis, treatment for bioterrorism threats

    The U.K. Defense Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) has received funding of up to $6.9 million from the U.S. Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) for a program entitled “Inhalational ciprofloxacin for improved protection against biowarfare agents.” The inhalational ciprofloxacin formulations used in this program are Aradigm’s proprietary investigational drugs Pulmaquin and Lipoquin.

  • Terrorists, hackers, corrupt officials: Game theory need updating to catch up with today’s chaos

    Game theory has long been used to apply mathematical models of conflict and cooperation between intelligent rational decision-makers. Many of today’s major problems do not stem from great power conflicts or monolithic blocks of self-interest, but from a vast array of single entities making highly individual choices: from lone wolf terrorists to corrupt officials, tax evaders, isolated hackers, or even armies of botnets and packages of malware. Game theory thus needs to catch up with the chaos of the modern world.

  • More powers, tighter monitoring: Germany reforms its intelligence service

    The Bundestag has passed a comprehensive reform of the BND, Germany’s main intelligence service. The legislation strengthens government monitoring of intelligence powers, and allows the BND to carry out certain types of surveillance activities. The reform is a response to two recent developments: the 2013 Snowden revelations that the BND had spied on German citizens on behalf of the NSA, and the growing concerns about terrorism in Europe. The new legislation thus gives the BND more powers – but subjects it to tighter judiciary monitoring.

  • Special forces should be at the heart of Britain’s military planning

    What sort of military does the United Kingdom need to deal with a rapidly changing set of potential threats? As Western countries increasingly move away from the conventional foe — one that is easily identified, armed in a similar way and which, most critically, thinks in a similar way, and therefore in a conventional and predictable manner – it’s time to reappraise the sort of armed forces required for the future. It is no longer the size of your arsenal of firepower but how well it is employed that matters. Organizations such as Islamic State understand that well: their actions are carefully targeted to achieve maximum effect with limited resources. With technology on the Western side, the best counter to this present – and likely future – threat, will be to adopt in turn Voltaire’s maxim and concentrate increasingly on special, and specialized, forces.

  • U.K. police charges man with terrorism over researching, using encryption

    Samata Ullah, a 33-year old Briton, earlier this month was charged in a London court with six counts of terrorism, one of which related to researching and using encryption. Privacy advocates say that a controversial statute under British law criminalizes, in the name of combatting terrorism, actions which, on their own, are perfectly legal.

  • Effective counter-extremism policy in the U.S. would focus on individuals, not entire communities

    The Obama administration’s domestic CVE policy has strained relations with an entire religious community, in large part because its policy perceives American Muslims through a security lens. The CVE efforts primarily consist of outreach to Muslim leaders to keep the community onside and encourage information sharing about vulnerable youth — but the community rarely knows about youth who are radicalized in their midst, and the vast majority of Muslims do not embrace violent extremism. Of the world’s jihadi foreign fighter population, there have been approximately 250 people mobilized out of 3.3 million Muslims in America (a mere .000075 percent). The U.S. government should jettison a community-oriented approach, and instead focus on individuals who have demonstrated a clear and sustained interest in jihadist propaganda, not an entire faith-based community.

  • ISIS fighters coming home after Mosul defeat pose threat to EU countries

    ISIS supporters who left Europe to join ISIS in Syria and Iraq have been fleeing from Mosul in the face of the U.S.-led coalition offensive – and European security officials say that as they come back home, they would pose a “serious threat” to European security. Experts warn that as the group loses power, the fighters will return home and continue the ideological battle on their home turf, even if the group is no longer in control of territory in the Middle East.