Down but Not Out? Revisiting the Terror Threat frpm Foreign Fighters

Richards, Julian (2020) Down but Not Out? Revisiting the Terror Threat frpm Foreign Fighters. International Journal of Intelligence, Security and Public Affairs, 22 (2). pp. 61-81. ISSN 2380-0992

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With the terrorist threat of jihadist returnees from the conflict in Iraq and Syria being frequently cited by Western political leaders, a question can be asked about how far this threat is manifesting itself when taking an empirical analysis of recent attacks in the West. In this paper, a detailed review is undertaken of 30 apparently jihadistinspired attacks in Western countries in the 18-month period between the beginning of 2015 and the middle of 2017. The findings broadly support analysis of earlier conflicts, in that returnees represent a small proportion of overall attackers, but tend to be involved in more organised and lethal operations than other non-travellers. At the same time, low-sophistication attacks by non-travellers can be just as lethal if executed properly. It is also the case that conflicts in the Middle East may represent a long tail of risk for Western countries which reaches far into the future.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Accepted 29th April 2020
Uncontrolled Keywords: intelligence, security, terrorism
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
J Political Science > JC Political theory
J Political Science > JZ International relations
Divisions: School of Humanities & Social Sciences > Economics
Depositing User: Julian Richards
Date Deposited: 08 Oct 2020 09:04
Last Modified: 10 Mar 2022 01:15

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