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  • OPINION

    Violence takes root in our words

    News, Leonid Bershidsky, Published on 14/12/2015

    » The Oxford Dictionaries' selection for the 2015 Word of the Year -- the "Face with Tears of Joy" emoji -- suggests that UK linguists live in a rather carefree world. In other countries, the selections were not as upbeat.

  • OPINION

    The mundane radicalism of terror

    News, Leonid Bershidsky, Published on 22/06/2017

    » The UK tabloids hesitated about what to call the white driver of a van who crashed into a crowd of worshippers at the Finsbury Park mosque in London on Monday. But Harry Potter author JK Rowling tweeted furiously that he was no less a terrorist than the perpetrators of recent Islamic State-inspired attacks.

  • OPINION

    Safer vehicles can make terrorist strikes much harder

    News, Leonid Bershidsky, Published on 07/06/2017

    » 'Enough is enough," UK Prime Minister Theresa May declared after the London terror attack on Saturday night, the third one this year. But what she proposed to counter the terrorist attacks was, essentially, some freedom of speech restrictions, more powers for law enforcement and longer sentences for terror-related offenses -- the same old toolbox that has been used for almost two decades.

  • OPINION

    Facebook can't have it both ways

    News, Leonid Bershidsky, Published on 24/03/2017

    » Nearly everyone has criticism for German Justice Minister Heiko Maas's proposal to impose fines on social networks and their workers for failure to delete hateful content. Internet freedom advocates hate it for imposing censorship. The European Union is concerned for the same reason and the German union of judges and prosecutors criticise it for not going far enough because the posters of hate-speech themselves escape punishment.

  • OPINION

    Integrate and treat a Muslim better, hurt Islamic State

    News, Leonid Bershidsky, Published on 27/04/2016

    » It is intuitively appealing to connect the number of fighters a country sends to the Islamic State (IS) with poverty and inequality. The more desperate and economically downtrodden people are, the more likely it is that they'll join a terrorist group, right? Wrong, recent research indicates: It's much more likely that the reasons for the IS's recruitment success are cultural.

  • OPINION

    Don't trust Putin's troop pullback

    News, Leonid Bershidsky, Published on 16/03/2016

    » President Vladimir Putin's unexpected announcement that Russian troops would pull back from Syria shouldn't be taken at face value: he's made similar announcements in the past to show Western negotiating partners how constructive he can be. He always has a hidden agenda.

  • OPINION

    No city is safe while Syria war drags on

    News, Leonid Bershidsky, Published on 16/11/2015

    » Although many details concerning the attacks that killed more than 120 people in Paris on Friday night remain unknown, Islamic State appears to have claimed responsibility. France and all other countries taking part in the Syrian conflict should keep in mind Russia's recent experience with this kind of terrorism: it won't cease until the epicentre is dealt with.

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