In this edition of Unpuzzling Terror, Mr. Itay Handman and MA student Evan Weinberg sat down with Mr. Brian Jenkins, senior advisor to the president of the RAND Corporation and former Green Beret captain, to discuss the evolution of terrorism as well as European and US counterterrorism measures. When asked about the development of terrorism, Mr. Jenkins noted that terrorism has evolved in two major ways; terrorists have increased the volume of attacks and have escalated the magnitude and violence of these attacks. Mr. Jenkins furthermore shed light on the complexity of securing public places in Europe, explaining that the free movement of people as part of the Schengen Agreement will either lead to increased cooperation among European intelligence authorities or to heightened border controls. As opposed to the ‘Israeli model’, the US, bound by the scarcity of its human and economic resources, will be unable to amplify specific counterterrorism measures in response to every attack. In his words, “the costs of the response are not determined by the single attack at a single location, but by the number of targets and the size of those targets to be protected.” Lastly, Mr. Jenkins asserted that the measures taken by the United States to mitigate the threat of terrorism will be a “long contest,” one that will succeed the current US presidency and that will require both the mobilization of national resources and the support of the American people.
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