18 August 2016
In recent weeks, much attention has been drawn to the vexing phenomenon of “non-violent” extremism. In Indonesia, police chief General Tito Karnavian has called for the country’s lawmakers to urgently enact legislation to curb “radical sermons” that “play an important role in encouraging would-be terrorists”.
Just last month, moreover, a cell of well-educated young Bangladeshis attacked the trendy Holey Artisan Bakery in Dhaka, killing 20 people, including foreigners. Investigations revealed that the cell members had apparently been radicalised by the online messages of three figures, namely Zakir Naik, Shami Witness and Anjem Choudary.
While Shami Witness — the online moniker for a 24-year-old office worker from Bangalore called Mehdi Biswas — was charged by the Indian police last year for running “the single most influential pro-Isis Twitter account”, Choudary, a 49-year-old British lawyer and spokesperson for a host of banned groups such as Islam4UK, has just been convicted by a British court of using online lectures and messages to encourage support for Islamic State, which is banned in the United Kingdom.
… Associate Professor Kumar Ramakrishna is Head of Policy Studies and Coordinator of the National Security Studies Programme in the Office of the Executive Deputy Chairman, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University. The views expressed here are his own.
GPO / NSSP / RSIS / Online / Print
Last updated on 18/08/2016