BREXIT Update: Exit Poses Security Challenges including ISIS

The reclaiming of its independence is a bold and worthy step, but the United Kingdom must find ways to enter into new intelligence-sharing agreements with other Western powers.

BY CounterJihad · @CounterjihadUS | October 27, 2016

CounterJihad supports the United Kingdom’s departure from the European Union (EU) as a way of reclaiming a defense of its glorious heritage and culture.  Nevertheless, there are some genuine challenges to making this exit work in a way that does not produce new hazards.  A senior UK police official, Helen Ball, recently spoke to the issue in an illuminating way before a committee of the House of Lords.

Speaking to peers on the committee, she added: “I think the way that terrorists are currently operating and the way I see them operating in the future that means we have an enormous amount to lose from diminishing our ability to work with European police forces and to share our intelligence with them.”

“We are all safer because we can work together across Europe and share information with each other – that genuinely is helping to keep citizens of Europe safe.”

The problems arise, she pointed out, where Europe and the UK are under-utilizing the tools they already have for cross-communication.  In fact, Europe is under-utilizing the idea of intelligence sharing as a tool for dealing with terrorism in general.  Though ready to accept intelligence generated by agencies in the United States, many European nations lack a central police force that can gather intelligence from all of the local police around the country.  Indeed, Europe itself lacks such a force that can do a similar aggregation, and coordinate sharing, across national borders.  So it is true both that the national governments do not know what the local police know, and also that the nations are unable to effectively share information internationally.

Commissioner Ball points to the European Arrest Warrant and INTERPOL as two effective forms of international cooperation.  It might be better said that they are better than nothing, which is the risk that the United Kingdom runs in negotiating its exit from the EU.  At a time when the UK is facing an increased risk of Islamic State (ISIS) attacks, the ability to identify terrorists across national borders is only a first step.  They must also be able to be stopped.  The tool of arresting them and extraditing them for prosecution depends on a model in which intelligence is brought before courts as if it were ordinary evidence.  There are a number of problems with that model, one of which is that the standard for intelligence is not ‘proof beyond a reasonable doubt.’  Intelligence agencies must be able to take action based on a certain probability, not a certainty, that an attack is forthcoming.  Otherwise, even when you know who the bad guys are,  you can’t stop them.

Extradition also has the disadvantage that it entails bringing the very worst radicals right into your own country, instead of not bringing them inside your borders as might have seemed the wiser course.  Should a clever lawyer or a credulous judge then set them free, or should they be sentenced to a lenient term and then released, they will be right where you did not want them to be.

Commissioner Ball is not wrong that these tools should be preserved, but they are not themselves adequate to the scale or degree of threat facing Britain and Europe.  A robust, aggressive program of counterterrorism should be mated to a renewed sense of immigration and border controls.  Only in this way can the threats be kept outside to the greatest possible degree, or stopped before it is too late.




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