The failed terrorist attack in Streatham, London has once again placed the UK at the centre of international attention. The attack is the third in as many months raising once again fears that the UK might be in the midst of a wave of incidents as was seen in 2017. But the nature of the threat picture that the UK faces from violent Islamist terrorists has evolved. From networked plots directed by al Qaeda, the threat picture is now dominated by lone actors using knives and fake bombs. Drawing on data from successful and disrupted plots, Raffaello Pantucci will sketch out what the threat picture looks like since the beginning of the war on Syria, highlighting its evolution through attack planning.
About the Speaker
Raffaello Pantucci is a Visiting Senior Fellow at ICPVTR in RSIS. He is also a Senior Associate Fellow at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) in London where he served previously as Director of International Security Studies. His research focuses on terrorism and counter-terrorism as well as China’s relations with its Western neighbours. Prior to joining RUSI in London in 2013, Raffaello lived for almost four years in Shanghai, where he was a visiting scholar at the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences (SASS). Before that, he worked in London at the International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS), and prior to that at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington. He has also held positions at the European Council of Foreign Relations (ECFR) and the International Center for the Study of Radicalisation (ICSR) at King’s College, London. He is the author of We Love Death As You Love Life: Britain’s Suburban Terrorists (London: Hurst, April 2015/US: Oxford University Press, September 2015), described by The Financial Times as ‘the most articulate and carefully researched account of Britain’s ‘suburban terrorists’ to date.’ His work has been cited in the UK’s Counter-Terrorism strategy CONTEST and al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula’s Inspire magazine. His journal articles have appeared in Survival, The National Interest, Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, Terrorism and Political Violence, and RUSI Journal amongst others, and his journalistic writing has appeared in the New York Times, Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, Sunday Times, CNN, Guardian, Foreign Policy, South China Morning Post, and more.