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Controversial British techniques

Interrogation, Intelligence and Security examines the origins and effects of a group of controversial interrogation techniques often described as torture, known as the ‘five techniques’. Focusing on the colony of Aden at a time when British rule was being challenged by nationalist insurgents (1963-67), on the height of ‘the troubles’ in Northern Ireland (1971) and the conflict in Iraq (2003), the book explores the use of hooding to restrict vision, white noise, stress positions, limited sleep and a limited diet. Through its in-depth analysis the book reveals how British forces came to use such controversial methods in counter-insurgency, counter-terrorism and internal security contexts. In Aden and Northern Ireland the techniques were a part of policy, used because of the British military’s belief – a belief adopted by members of government – that the techniques would increase the amount and quality of intelligence obtained during interrogation. In Iraq the techniques were used for a much more complex set of factors that can be categorised into facilitating and motivating factors. The book finds that while it is likely that some intelligence was produced from these interrogations, the techniques had widespread and long-lasting negative effects that should be taken into account when judging whether these and similar techniques can be justified.

The politics of Prevent
Author: Thomas Martin

How can potential future terrorists be identified? Forming one of the four pillars of the United Kingdom’s counter-terrorism strategy CONTEST, Prevent seeks to answer, and act on, this question. Occupying a central role in security debates post-9/11, Prevent is concerned with understanding and tackling radicalisation. It carries the promise of early intervention into the lives of those who may be on a pathway to violence.

This book offers an innovative account of the Prevent policy, situating it as a novel form of power that has played a central role in the production and the policing of contemporary British identity. Drawing on interviews with those at the heart of Prevent’s development, the book provides readers with an in-depth history and conceptualisation of the policy. The book demonstrates that Prevent is an ambitious new way of thinking about violence that has led to the creation of a radical new role for the state: tackling vulnerability to radicalisation. Foregrounding the analytical relationship between security, identity and temporality in Prevent, this book situates the policy as central to contemporary identity politics in the UK. Detailing the history of the policy, and the concepts and practices that have been developed within Prevent, this book critically engages with the assumptions on which they are based and the forms of power they mobilise.

In providing a timely history and analysis of British counter-radicalisation policy, this book will be of interests to students and academics interested in contemporary security policy and domestic responses to the ‘War on Terror’.

Terrorism, parliament and the ritual of proscription
Authors: Lee Jarvis and Tim Legrand

Banning them, securing us offers a rich and expansive exploration of the politics of proscribing – or banning – terrorist organisations in Britain. The book calls attention to the remarkable, and overlooked, role of proscription debates and decisions in contemporary UK politics. Using primary empirical research, the book shows how parliamentary processes of proscribing ‘illegitimate’ organisations is as much a ritual performance as it is a technique for countering political violence. This ritual, we argue, is a performance of sovereignty and powerful framing of Britain as a liberal, democratic, moderate space. Yet, it represents a paradox too. For proscription’s processes have limited democratic or judicial oversight, and its outcomes pose significant threats to democratic norms, human rights, political dissent and citizenship more broadly.

The book breaks important new ground on the politics of terrorism, counter-terrorism, security and democracy. It will be widely read by researchers and students across Security Studies, International Relations, Political Science, History, Sociology and beyond.

Perceptions, experiences, and consequences

This book explores citizens’ perceptions and experiences of security threats in contemporary Britain, drawing on perspectives from International Security Studies and Political Psychology. The empirical chapters are based on twenty focus groups across six British cities and a large sample survey conducted between April and September 2012. These data are used to investigate the extent to which diverse publics share government framings of certain issues as the most pressing security threats, to assess the origins of perceptions of specific security threats ranging from terrorism to environmental degradation, to investigate what makes some people feel more threatened by these issues than others, to examine the effects of threats on other areas of politics such as harbouring stereotypes of minorities or prioritising public spending on border control over health, and to evaluate the effectiveness of government messages about security threats and attempts to change citizens’ behaviour as part of the risk management cycle. The book demonstrates widespread heterogeneity in perceptions of issues as security threats and in their origins, with implications for the extent to which shared understandings of threats are an attainable goal. The concluding chapter summarises the findings and discusses their implications for government and public opinion in the future. While this study focuses on the British case, its combination of quantitative and qualitative methods seeks to make broader theoretical and methodological contributions to scholarship produced in Political Science, International Relations, Political Psychology, and Security Studies.

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Michael J. Boyle

Rethinking terrorism and counterterrorism As the case studies in this volume have illustrated, there is no single ‘non-Western’ approach to terrorism. What emerges from the case studies is quite the opposite: a wide diversity of conceptualizations of the threat that are not always wholly in sync with the depictions of the threat favoured by the United States and its allies. To be certain, there are points of agreement. All Western and non-Western countries agree that terrorism is a formidable challenge to the authority of the state and that it

in Non-Western responses to terrorism
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The growth of terrorism and counterterrorism in Nigeria, 1999–2016
Jennifer Giroux and Michael Nwankpa

Introduction Most discussions about terrorism in Nigeria – and, indeed, Africa more broadly – tend to be about the Nigerian-based group referred to as Boko Haram – and for good reason. Formed in the early 2000s out of a small religious sect in the northeast of Nigeria, over the years Boko Haram has become an increasingly violent force that evolved into a full-blown insurgency in 2009 – a year that is also notable as it marked the decline of a completely different insurgency in Nigeria's Niger Delta region in the south. Since then, sustained

in Non-Western responses to terrorism
Propaganda and finance in Al Qaeda and Islamic State
Author: Imogen Richards

Few social and political phenomena have been debated as frequently or fervidly as neoliberalism and neo-jihadism. Yet, while discourse on these phenomena has been wide-ranging, they are rarely examined in relation to one another. In response, Neoliberalism and neo-jihadism examines political-economic characteristics of twentieth and early twenty-first-century neo-jihadism. Drawing on Bourdieusian and neo-Marxist ideas, it investigates how the neo-jihadist organisations, Al Qaeda and Islamic State, engage with the late modern capitalist paradigm of neoliberalism in their anti-capitalist propaganda and quasi-capitalist financial practices. An investigation of documents and discourses reveals interactions between neoliberalism and neo-jihadism characterised by surface-level contradiction, and structural connections that are dialectical and mutually reinforcing. Neoliberalism here is argued to constitute an underlying ‘status quo’, while neo-jihadism, as an evolving form of political organisation, is perpetuated as part of this situation.

Representing differentiated, unique, and exclusive examples of the (r)evolutionary phenomenon of neo-jihadism, AQ and IS are demonstrated in Neoliberalism and neo-jihadism to be characteristic of the mutually constitutive nature of ‘power and resistance’. Just as resistance movements throughout modern history have ended up resembling the forms of power they sought to overthrow, so too have AQ and IS ended up resembling and reconstituting the dominant political-economic paradigm of neoliberalism they mobilised in response to.

Irene Chan

suppression of the Uyghur community, both internationally and domestically. Critics have pointed out that terrorism is a rhetorical tool to secure and legitimize Chinese rule over restive autonomous regions such as Tibet and Xinjiang. 2 Terrorism in China has been closely related to separatist movements in ethnic autonomous regions, particularly the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (henceforth ‘Xinjiang’). An examination of the spike in violent incidents in Xinjiang and mainland China since 2008 shows that the potential of social unrest in Xinjiang is real

in Non-Western responses to terrorism
An ad hoc response to an enduring and variable threat
Rashmi Singh

Introduction On 26 November 2008, the world watched in horror as ten armed men in a series of coordinated attacks wrought havoc on the Indian coastal city of Mumbai. Terrorism in India had made the headlines – again. While these were neither India's, nor indeed Mumbai's, first major terrorist attacks, their sheer scale and innovation, the high number of foreigners killed, and the inability of India's security apparatus to respond in a timely and effective manner quite rightly focused the world's attention upon India's counterterrorism (CT

in Non-Western responses to terrorism
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Language and politics
Richard Jackson

terrorism’ and the way in which language has been deployed to justify and normalise a global campaign of counter-terrorism. The enactment of any large-scale project of political violence – such as war or counter-terrorism – requires a significant degree of political and social consensus and consensus is not possible without language. For a government to commit enormous amounts of public resources and risk

in Writing the war on terrorism