From the Editor
Islamic State-inspired terrorism returned to the headlines this month on both sides of the Atlantic. In Orlando the United States suffered its deadliest terrorist attack since 9/11 while in France a police couple were stabbed to death in their own home by a French extremist who threatened that France would become a “cemetery” during the Euro 2016 soccer championships. In our cover story Richard Walton argues the threat to Euro 2016, which concludes on July 10, is more acute than for any other international sporting event in history because of the unprecedented threat to France from the Islamic State and its followers. Walton was the head of the Metropolitan Police’s Counterterrorism Command during the London Olympics and looks at lessons learned for protecting Euro 2016 and the upcoming Rio Olympics. In our second cover story Pieter Van Ostaeyen outlines how the emergence of three clusters of radical extremists in Brussels and Antwerp is the key reason Belgium has contributed more foreign fighters to Syria and Iraq, per capita, than any other Western nation.
Sam Mullins analyzes all 47 cases of jihadist-inspired violence between 2012 and the June 12 Orlando attack. He finds that knife attacks like the one in France this week were the most common while shootings like the one in Orlando were the deadliest. Robert Graham, a cyber security specialist, examines how terrorist groups are exploiting powerful end-to-end encryption to try to communicate securely. He explains that while “end-to-end” encryption technology cannot be put ‘back in the box,’ intelligence agencies still have several strategies available to intercept the “ends” of communications. The June issue also focuses on counterterrorism challenges facing Greece. Our interview is with Vassilios Kikilias, who served as Greece’s Minister of Public Order and Citizen Protection in 2014 during which time he oversaw the country’s intelligence and police services. Ioannis Mantzikos outlines how the country has become a gateway for foreign fighters traveling back and forth from Syria creating potential terrorist threats inside Greece as well as the rest of Europe.
Paul Cruickshank, Editor in Chief