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 »

Does terrorism work?

Does Terrorism Work? A History by Richard English. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2016. 368pp., £25.00 (h/b), ISBN 9780199607853 The renewed proliferation of terrorism studies that rapidly followed the 9/11 attacks has been well-documented, and the post-9/11 wave that is now nearly two decades old, has focused predominantly on an elusive, universally-accepted definition of terrorism. Efforts… 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 »

Liquid Warfare: AFRICOM and its pop-up militarization

In recent years, an expanding conglomerate of armed actors is engaged in training operations, targeted killings and manhunts, often outside conventional war zones across the Middle East and Africa. These Western state-led operations mark a shift away from ‘boots-on-the-ground’ deployments towards light-footprint military interventions, and involve a combination of drone strikes and airstrikes, special forces,… Read more »

Conspiracy and Foreign Policy

The spectre of conspiracy looms large in politics and international affairs. We hear of covert Russian interferences in the 2016 US Presidential Elections or of renewed intrigue surrounding the assassination of John F. Kennedy over half a century ago. Intelligence dossiers, anonymous sources, secret meetings and suspicious connections make up the political world we live… Read more »

Performativity of Security in Military Interventions

By Elke Krahmann Many actors have embraced performance as a measure for the effectiveness and legitimacy of their international governance activities, ranging from the United States government to the World Health Organization and the World Bank. In my recently published article in Security Dialogue, “From performance to performativity: The legitimization of US security contracting and… Read more »