Securitizing the Muslim Brotherhood, legitimizing state violence and renewing authoritarianism in post-Arab Spring Egypt

On 14 August 2013, we watched televised news in horror as Egyptian security forces brutally attacked largely peaceful sit-ins of Muslim Brotherhood supporters protesting against the removal of Egypt’s first democratically elected president, Mohamed Morsi. In just 12 hours, the state’s use of live ammunition, snipers, armoured vehicles and bulldozers led to the deaths of… Read more »

Stepping into the haunted house? Two challenges when slowing down critique

A world without the need for critique is unthinkable. And yet, Critical Security Studies (CSS) have learned that critique is a difficult and far from self-evident exercise. The Security Dialogue 50th anniversary issue builds on this legacy and addresses, once again, the specter of critique. It is an attempt to give words to the messy… Read more »

Speed, Event Suppression and the Chronopolitics of Resilience

Terrorist attacks, infectious diseases, financial crises, and floods—what makes contemporary dangers so threatening is their tendency to suddenly materialize, rapidly escalate and quickly spread. So how might we respond to such threats? ”What makes contemporary dangers so threatening is their tendency to suddenly materialize, rapidly escalate and quickly spread.” In my recent article in Security… Read more »

Dangerous feelings: Checkpoints and the Perception of Hostile Intent

Checkpoints were a surprisingly deadly place for civilians in both Afghanistan and Iraq. While our attention was often drawn to the more spectacular or scandalous acts of violence, the steady accumulation of dead and injured bodies at coalition checkpoints passed by largely unnoticed. At one point, the situation in Iraq was so bad that an… Read more »

Rethinking security through sound

Security has become an increasingly prominent part of everyday life, impacting us as we travel, interact in community spaces, or consider options for communication.  While physical barriers, passports, and technologies such as X-ray machines and metal detectors are commonly accepted as integral parts of the evolving security sector, ambient sound is rarely imagined as salient… Read more »

Secular risk governance? A look into the recent history of the Turkish military

The Turkish political landscape has been volatile for a while now and, especially in the past few years, we have witnessed dramatic transformations of Turkish state structures and institutions. The attempted coup of July 15th 2016 reinforced the significance and ongoing power of the Turkish military regardless of which political interests they are aligned with… Read more »

Beyond the Police: Jerusalem’s Modular Security Provision

When we think about public security, we often think about the police, the military, or perhaps about border guards or the criminal courts. But security is often pursued in cooperation with a variety of public and private actors, enlisted by state security actors to reinforce their legal and operational capacities, while providing them with enhanced… Read more »

Anxiety, fantasy and ideology in the social construction of a ‘Muslim problem’

‘I’ve been warning my party of its “Muslim problem” for far too long’, wrote Baroness Warsi in July 2018, calling for an inquiry into Islamophobia in the UK’s ruling Conservative Party. Warsi subverted a term coined a year earlier when Trevor Kavanagh, former political editor of the Sun, published a column in that paper posing… Read more »