Small Wars Journal

Europe to Terrorists: It’s No More Monsieur Nice Guy

Europe to Terrorists: It’s No More Monsieur Nice Guy by Thomas Hegghammer – Wall Street Journal

Jihadist terrorism until recently had Europe on the defensive. Now the continent is getting tough and fighting the threat with measures that would have been unthinkable six or seven years ago.

The old notion that Europe is weak on terrorism gained traction in the mid-2010s. Between 2015 and 2017, some 350 people were killed by jihadists across Europe. Terrorism rose to the top of polls of public concerns, and criticism of European counterterrorism capabilities grew explicit. A PBS “Frontline” investigation into the 2016 Brussels attacks revealed “a scale of dysfunction remarkable in the annals of modern counterterrorism.” Many wondered if Europe was up to the task of defending itself.

But the continent stepped up in a way that many observers, including me, didn’t foresee. European countries poured money into counterterrorism and improved intelligence sharing. They also initiated a qualitative overhaul involving radical new measures that had previously been considered politically off-limits…

Read on.