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Thread: Studies on radicalization & comments

  1. #261
    Council Member davidbfpo's Avatar
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    Default Mobilization To Violence (Terrorism) Research - key findings

    From the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS) a report:
    In this document, the Service will outline selected findings from research it has conducted over the past three years. The purpose of this document is not to answer questions such as what are the causes of terrorism and radicalization and how these phenomena can be prevented. Although these questions are important, this document is intended as an analysis of the process of mobilization to terrorist activity. It explores not why a person becomes radicalized, but rather how the person mobilizes to engage in terrorism.
    Link:https://csis.gc.ca/pblctns/thrpblctns/2018-02-05-en.php
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 02-05-2018 at 08:25 PM. Reason: 220,419v
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  2. #262
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    Default Interview: Europe’s crime-terror nexus

    A short interview with an ICSR researcher, Rajan Basra; simply explained as:
    Evidence suggests that criminal and jihadist milieus are more and more intertwined, challenging established beliefs about the incompatibility of criminal behavior and religious Islamic fundamentalism.
    Link:https://globalriskinsights.com/2018/...w-rajan-basra/

    He was the co-author of a recent ICSR report (54 pgs.) 'Criminal Pasts, Terrorist Futures: European Jihadists and the New Crime-Terror Nexus'.
    Link:http://icsr.info/wp-content/uploads/...171214_web.pdf
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 03-21-2018 at 09:34 PM. Reason: 229,243v on 03-21-2018
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  3. #263
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    Default The Globalisation of Countering Violent Extremism Policies

    A report by two academics / advocates (one of whom I recognise as a critical SME) from the Transnational Institute (TNI), a think tank and they explanation:
    provides a critical account of the emergence of CVE policies and analyses their subsequent institutionalisation within three international bodies: the European Union, the United Nations, and the Global Counterterrorism Forum.
    Link:https://www.tni.org/en/publication/t...emism-policies

    The summary ends with:
    This report begins by examining the origins and proliferation of CVE policies and the problems that have accompanied and continue to surround their development and implementation. We then examine CVE policy and practice across the three aforementioned international bodies. The final sections contain conclusions and recommendations stemming from our research, including a framework we have developed to analyze the legitimacy of national CVE policies through their impact on fundamental rights and democratic and pluralist aspirations.

    Finally, we would like to note from the outset that for all the ‘CVE mania’, it is surprising how little qualifies as the ‘evidence-led policy’ we hear so much about in other fields. Not only should we be asking for evidence that CVE policies are effective in terms of countering the terrorism, ‘radicalisation’ and extremism they purport to address, we should also be ensuring that in the absence of such evidence, policies do not risk exacerbating the divisions and grievances on which extremism feeds.
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  4. #264
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    Default The Death Drive Revisited: On Olivier Roy’s “Jihad and Death”

    A book review of Professor Olivier Roy's latest, very short book, with 99 pages 'Jihad and Death'. A "taster":
    The conclusions Roy advances in Jihad and Death are based on a database of approximately 140 individuals “involved in terrorism in mainland France and/or having left France to take part in a ‘global’ jihad between 1994 and 2016.” While there is no singular terrorist biography, there are recurrent characteristics: second-generation immigrants or converts with backgrounds featuring petty crime and prison stays, and often seemingly well integrated into secular culture.
    Link:https://lareviewofbooks.org/article/...had-and-death/

    On Twitter an Oxford University academic, Easkandar Sadeghi, has commented:
    Roy is most original when discussing these links between jihadism and other forms of youth culture and revolt, linking the self-performance element evident among many militants to video game heroes and a broader aestheticization of violence. In a welcome addition to literature on Islamic violence, he draws explicit parallels between “our” violence and “theirs,” noting that the “boundaries between a suicidal psychopath and a militant for the caliphate” have grown increasingly hazy.” While there is no singular terrorist biography, there are recurrent characteristics: second-generation immigrants or converts with backgrounds featuring petty crime and prison stays, and often seemingly well integrated into secular culture. He argues that “combat-sports clubs are more important than mosques in jihadi socialization,” drawing on examples like that of a group of Portuguese converts who joined ISIS and whose bond was solidified in a Thai boxing club.


    Last edited by davidbfpo; 04-08-2018 at 04:23 PM. Reason: 233,388v
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  5. #265
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    Default The Organized Crime and Terrorist Nexus: Overhyping the relationship

    A contrary view on the theme there is an overlap between crime and terror via Stratfor. Two sentences:
    An enduring and sometimes inescapable tendency in national security circles is inflated threat assessments. This is not surprising: it is usually far less dangerous to exaggerate than to downplay threats to national and international security.

    The nexus thesis is based in large part on confirmation bias: analysts looking for cooperative relationships between criminals and terrorists almost invariably find them.
    Link:https://marcom.stratfor.com/horizons...g-relationship
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 05-03-2018 at 06:59 PM. Reason: 240,577v 7k up since last post
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  6. #266
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    Default The Islamic State in the UK: soaking and poking to gain understanding

    Professor Michael Kenney at the University of Pittsburgh and the author of a superb book IMHO 'From Pablo to Osama: Trafficking and Terrorist Networks, Government Bureaucracies, and Competitive Adaptation' (published in 2007), has a new book coming 'The Islamic State in Britain: Radicalization and Resilience in an Activist Network'.

    He has a short summary of the book and describes it as:
    The result of all this soaking and poking is the first ethnographic study of a Salafi-jihadi network based in Europe that has been implicated in political violence and sending fighters to ISIS and other militant groups.
    Link:http://www.cambridgeblog.org/2018/10...ivist-network/

    I particularly liked his closing two sentences:
    Unless we understand why some young men and women in Britain, and the West more broadly, embrace extremist ideologies and why a smaller subset of them mobilize to violence, we are not likely to prevent these processes from continuing in the future. This has consequences for all of us.
    Link to the book:https://www.cambridge.org/core/books...F5184E2EF41D46

    The main thread on radicalization is:http://council.smallwarsjournal.com/showthread.php?7188-Studies-on-radicalization-amp-comment
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 10-17-2018 at 01:17 PM.
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  7. #267
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    Default

    Far too expensive to buy, spotted yesterday in an Oxford bookshop - over £100.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 1 Week Ago at 06:47 PM. Reason: 524v before merging
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  8. #268
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    Default Here is what we know about about the psychology of ‘lone wolf’ mass murderers

    An updated edition of a 2016 article by Professor Randy Borum (one time Forum member) after recent events. So it may be here already and without a working Search function I cannot tell.

    His closing passage:
    It is not always easy to “make sense” of lone-offender attacks. But by understanding their origins, elements and context, we can avoid misconceptions and more accurately describe the problem. That will be a key to helping detect and prevent these kinds of attacks.
    Link:https://www.rawstory.com/2018/10/kno...yQu3Rg.twitter
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 11-01-2018 at 05:57 PM. Reason: 282,601v up 40k isnce last post
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  9. #269
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    Default Three topical articles

    A CNN commentary by Peter Bergen, entitled 'Zeros trying to be heroes: what motivates terrorists'. He opens with:
    When I was researching a book about Americans becoming violent jihadists, again and again I was struck by how often they were men who were going nowhere fast in life and who turned to violent jihadist ideology as a way of giving their lives greater meaning. They were often zeros trying to be heroes in their own story.The terrorist incidents of the past week in the United States show that this can also be the case for alleged right-wing terrorists such as Cesar Sayoc, who is accused of mailing crude bombs to prominent Democrats and others, and Robert Bowers, who is accused of killing 11 at a synagogue in Pittsburgh.
    Both Sayoc and Bowers display some of the same characteristics as American jihadist terrorists: losers who attached themselves to extremist right-wing ideologies that gave meaning to their otherwise dead-end lives.
    Link:https://edition.cnn.com/2018/10/30/o...gen/index.html

    Just perhaps the latest attacks will be the last, alas I tend to agree with his last passage:
    The truth is that zeros wanting to be heroes, motivated by a number of toxic ideologies and armed with semi-automatic weapons, will likely continue to massacre Americans at frequent intervals for the foreseeable future.
    I do wonder whether parts of the USG are "clutching at straws" when I read of an academic project is getting (tiny) support ($731k):
    to use the Western Jihadism Project’s data collection to create an algorithm that can predict when an individual will become radicalized.
    Link:http://www.brandeis.edu/now/2018/nov...n-profile.html

    Becoming 'radicalized' does not mean you become violent and from my reading IMHO the tipping point is so multi-faceted prediction is impossible.

    A short article from New Zealand, actually originally in the WaPo, 'The psychology of how someone becomes radicalised' and focused on the extreme right in the USA:
    For radicalisation to occur, there are three necessary ingredients, according to Kruglanski's research. The first is the universal need to live a worthwhile life - to have significance. People usually satisfy this need through socially accepted means, "like working hard, having families, other kinds of achievements," Kruglanski said. Radicals instead tend to place significance on their gender, religion or race. The second is "the narrative," which gives someone permission to use violence. Kruglanski said the narrative is usually that there is an enemy attacking your group, and the radical must fight to gain or maintain respect, honor or glory. The third necessary component is the community, or the network of people who validate the narrative and the violence.
    Link:https://www.nzherald.co.nz/world/new...ectid=12153329
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  10. #270
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    Default How France was forced to reassess its ideas about radicalised youth

    A really interesting France24 (TV) report that opens with:
    When Paris was hit by two major terrorist attacks in 2015, France embarked on a painful journey to understand the radicalisation of its youth. Three years later, researchers have discredited initial theories about the “typical” home-grown terrorist.
    Link:https://www.france24.com/en/20181111...theories-minds

    I suspect other interested parties, including "experts" will not be pleased. At least the French have learnt faster than other nations - hopefully.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 4 Weeks Ago at 09:38 PM. Reason: Copied from the French CT thread
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  11. #271
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    Default After Melbourne: a view from Australia

    The actual article is entitled: 'More laws won't stop terrorism but effective prevention is complex' and the author is different:
    Dr Anne Aly is a federal Labor MP and former academic in the field of counter terrorism and countering violent extremism.
    Link:https://www.smh.com.au/national/more...10-p50f9p.html
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  12. #272
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    Default 'Astonishing findings' in new Swedish report on extremism and organized crime

    Sub-titled:
    A new Swedish report on extremism and organized crime paints a completely new picture of what the stereotypical offender behind those types of crimes looks like. 'We've been totally astonished by the findings,' the head author of the study told The Local.
    Link:https://www.thelocal.se/20181112/ast...rganized-crime
    Alas the link to the cited research report does not have an English translation.
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 3 Weeks Ago at 02:18 PM. Reason: 285,442v 3k up in two weeks
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  13. #273
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    Default 2018 Nordic Conference on Violent Extremism

    A notice on this conference in Oslo that has started. Added here as most of the talks have a summary added, which could act as a pointer to expertise available. I noted that The Norwegian Security Police and a former senior Danish Intelligence Service officer are speaking too. Scanning the experts most are from Scandinavia, one from the UK. Thanks to a "lurker" for this.
    Link:https://www.sv.uio.no/c-rex/english/...ule/index.html
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  14. #274
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    Default Don’t Just Counter-Message; Counter-Engage

    From the Dutch think tank ICCT an excellent, short article and here is most of the second paragraph:
    what most P/CVE strategies fail to demonstrate is that effective messaging is just one part of a holistic influence campaign where offline actions reinforce online messaging. The messages of extremist groups reach their intended audiences, resonate with them, and then – most importantly – offer them a pathway for action. If the movement speaks to you then you can, for instance, help spread their message online or offline, recruit and proselyte others, facilitate terrorist attacks or material flows, provide infrastructural support, or even become a local or foreign fighter. The appeal of the recruitment messaging is that these are action-oriented groups that can be supported or joined. Instead of solely offering online counter-narratives, P/CVE strategists should consider shifting their focus to offering what I call counter-engagement. Instead of offering alternative messages only, these efforts should shift towards offering alternatives things to do as well.
    Link:https://icct.nl/publication/dont-jus...ounter-engage/
    Last edited by davidbfpo; 1 Week Ago at 07:06 PM. Reason: 288,136v today nearly 3k up in a week
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  15. #275
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    Default Lessons from Germany and Indonesia: The power of social relationships

    A curious article from a previously unheard of organization, Orbmedia, and the key theme is:
    New research suggests that relationships, like the friendships that drew Harmanto into Jemaah Islamiyah, may be among the most important factors in determining who joins these groups and who stays out of them.
    Link:https://orbmedia.org/stories/fighting-blind/multimedia
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  16. #276
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    Default Do Mothers Know Best? How Assumptions Harm CVE

    This paper is by Emily Winterbotham (RUSI) and is published by the Tony Blair Institute. It appears on a quick read to dispute that mothers can help and taken from the summary:
    The rationale is that woman are inherently more peaceful than men and that, if empowered to do so, they can stop radicalisation to violence. Many schemes have focused on mothers. The assumption is that mothers are better able to detect signs of a move to extremism in their children. Critics of this approach point to the lack of publicly available evidence that supports it. There is (so far) no definitive evidence showing that mothers can spot and address increased radicalisation to violence in their children. This paper explores the thinking and assumptions behind this myth about women, and specifically mothers, in CVE programming.
    Link:https://institute.global/insight/co-existence/do-mothers-know-best-how-assumptions-harm-cve?
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  17. #277
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    Default Two different US reports

    The first, short article is 'Mass Radicalization in the USA: We are more radical than before. Why?' and appears on a previously unknown magazine website. Link:http://https://www.psychologytoday.c...ion-in-the-usa

    The second concerns 'Strategies for Rehabilitating Terrorists in U.S. Prisons' and the actual report's title is 'When Terrorists Come Home: The Need for Rehabilitating and Reintegrating America’s Convicted Jihadists'. Not read beyond the summary.
    Link:https://www.counterextremism.com/pre...cted-islamists


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