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Security and Society

Da'esh has, for much of its reign of terror, been funded from a range of sources. Although it is difficult to say exactly, the general feeling is that the largest, or close to the largest, has been from the sale, albeit on the black market, of oil. After a period in the doldrums, oil prices are rising again and, therefore, so will Da'esh's funding. But, of course, it's more complicated than that.

CoNet Section: 

On 23 November, the Council of the EU published a set of "conclusions" of the council and Representatives of the governments of Member States on "the prevention of radicalisation leading to violent extremism." If there was ever a subject that was more fraught with danger in relation to definitions and concepts, it's hard to think of one. But the conclusions are based on a premise that is very familiar:that criminals aren't to blame for their actions - it's society's fault.

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As it rains on the Labour Party's parade, their Brexit battle bus shows the direction Labour wants Europe to take. It's going left. That is just one of the problems facing an increasingly disunited Labour as it follows the Conservatives into near meltdown over the issue.
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While the Conservative Party is seemingly on a course to self-destruction and Jeremy Corby wrestles with bizarre claims of anti-Semitism (the protesters don't appear to know what a Semite is) and both parties wondering how to spin the overall picture presented by last week's elections, Gordon Brown, one of, perhaps the primary, architect of the collapse of the British economy who failed to get a decent job in Europe and the IMF after his delusional claim that he saved the world, has weighed in. He's confirmed one significant fact that most politicians are reluctant to point out: the EU is, widely and fundamentally, a coalition of socialist states. Britain (at least parts of it) remain the only effective hold-out moderate, non-left-wing, state.

CoNet Section: 

After New York copied the Zero Tolerance initiative originated by Cleveland Police in the UK, the Big Apple saw the blight of widespread crime falling away. With all due respect to economists who claim that demographic and social changes were responsible, there is no doubt that strong policing made a difference.

So it's a surprise to learn that the city now appears to be turning its back on such methods to focus on large scale crime instead.

Is it because that's where the money is?

CoNet Section: 

Perhaps the most telling statement relating to yesterday's hijacking of a EgyptAir flight from Egypt to Cairo came from Egypt's Foreign Ministry, as quoted by the BBC: "He is not a terrorist he's an idiot. Terrorists are crazy but they are not stupid. This guy is."

Yet, for all his stupidity, his actions raise some serious questions.

CoNet Section: 

A long article in the New York Times this week is headlined "Bernie Sanders Is Jewish, but He Doesn’t Like to Talk About It." The premise is simple: Sanders is not Jewish enough, or not overtly Jewish enough, for those Jews who want all Jews to wear a metaphorical yellow star. But it's not only Jews and it's not only Americans who want their politicians to put their religion front and centre - and to define a country with reference to the criteria set by those same outspoken groups. Are we seeing the death of the separation of Church and State?

CoNet Section: 

The actions of terrorists are always unacceptable. But history shows that changing attitudes accept the results of terrorism and, in some cases, see the results as worthy of the action. As we come up to two weeks before the 12th anniversary of 11 September 2001, it is clear some, perhaps unintended, consequences may prove to be beneficial to the entire world, including Muslims.

A contentious thought: please set aside emotional considerations when reading.

CoNet Section: 

The USA is to close embassies and consulates over Hari Raya / Eid (the end of Ramadan / Muslim new year). It's a PR snafu.

CoNet Section: 

The UK has suffered its first fatal terrorist attack since 7 July 2007. Running people down, hacking down people large knives is so common in some parts of the world that it warrants a small note on the inside pages of newspapers. But those attacks are usually related to organised crime or some perceived personal slight. But the murderous attack in Woolwich in south-east London was neither of those.

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