Category: Security

European Union-Belarus Border Crisis: Why the narrative of “hybrid warfare” is dangerous

The 2021 EU-Belarus border crisis was preceded by a rapid deterioration of the already strained European Union (EU)-Belarus relations, in most part due to the Ryanair 4978 incident and the concomitant wide-ranging sanctions imposed by the EU on the authoritarian government of the Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, who has often been referred by the media as “Europe’s last dictator.” What… Read more »

Artificial Intelligence, Warfare, and Bias

When you think about Artificial Intelligence (AI) and war, you might find yourself thinking about killer robots, like those we have seen in movies such as The Terminator. In reality, AI and warfare looks quite different from these popularized images, and today we see many countries around the world exploring the use of AI and… Read more »

Contingency Planning in the Digital Age: Biometric Data of Afghans Must Be Reconsidered

The situation in Afghanistan changes by the minute. In this blog post, we want to call attention to a largely overlooked issue: protection of Afghan refugees or other Afghans who have been registered biometrically by humanitarian or military agencies. Having collected biometrics from various parts of the Afghan population, for different purposes and with different… Read more »

Hong Kong Two Years After the Mass Protests: What’s Next?

In 2019, millions of Hong Kong citizens took to the streets to protest a proposed bill that would allow Hong Kong authorities to extradite suspected criminals to mainland China. The protests soon developed into a movement, demanding full universal suffrage, amnesty of arrested protestors, and an independent inquiry to investigate police brutality. Known as the Anti-Extradition Law Amendment Bill (Anti-ELAB) Movement, this led to a landslide victory… Read more »

Humanitarian Biometrics in Yemen: The complex politics of humanitarian technology

The introduction of biometrics in Yemen is a prime example of challenges related to the use of biometric solutions in humanitarian contexts. The complexity of the situation in Yemen needs to be acknowledged by policy makers and other stakeholders involved in the humanitarian crisis unfolding in the country.

After The bomb: The Securitization of the Norwegian Government Quarters 2011-2021

July 22, 2011, at 15.25, a bomb placed inside a white van exploded next to the H-bloc (‘Høyblokka’) where the prime minister’s office was located. Eight people were killed in the blast: most were government employees, and some were passing by. More than 200 people were injured. Additionally, the explosion caused enormous material damage. Later… Read more »

Myanmar – from one dictatorship to another

The coup d’état in Myanmar marks a defeat for the military’s attempt to create a “discipline-flourishing” democracy. The coup occurred on 1 February, just before the newly elected parliament was set to convene. This timing made it easy to arrest the country’s leading politicians. The military used allegations of electoral fraud as a pretext. The… Read more »

Tech-Based States of Emergency: some key takeaways

The COVID-19 pandemic has triggered the acceleration of pre-existing technological trends. As states introduce new rules and technological solutions to fight the pandemic, it can be tempting to view these technological applications as neutral scientific decisions. However, we must critically examine these decisions because times of crisis set standards which can last long after the… Read more »

In 2016, I identified four future developments that would justify the Trump-Hitler comparison. Here are the results.

In 2016, comparing president-elect Donald Trump to all-time villain Adolf Hitler seemed overdrawn. It ultimately proved to be exaggerated in 2021, with the transition of power to Joe Biden completed. However, during his presidency, Trump has taken actions similar to the ones the Nazis used to consolidate their power. This is no partisan political statement,… Read more »