To conclude, in this paper, we demonstrated that Britain’s key vulnerability to foreign terrorism lies in its tendency to over-securitize the issue and create suspect communities based on over-simplified and often unjust misconceptions. Consequently, this pattern leads to a more divided society and increases the chances of foreign terrorists gaining more recruits from Britain.
Furthermore, we argued that Brexit, is a part of the global nationalist and isolationist trend. It blames multiculturalism and globalization for failure to provide security. Yet, a large amount of empirical evidence emphasises that the majority of terrorist attacks in the UK have been conducted by British residents or citizens who have been radicalized within the state.
Also, according to the available data unveiling potential scenarios post Brexit-Britain future, it can be stated that cooperation with its European neighbors is most likely to be maintained, and thus, there would be minor or no changes in intelligence gathering which is the key tool in British security mechanism. However, Brexit’s isolationist nature may enhance the gap between minority communities and the rest of British population. It has a risk of increasing likelihood of alienation and even radicalisation for those who have been marginalised by its own government which attempts to protect the state from the ‘global terrorist threat’.
Furthermore, the image of suspected communities is also constructed and reinforced by mass-media. Its’ regular reports on foreign terrorism and rising numbers of casualties fosters an environment of anxiety and fear. These emotions are an evident victory for psychological warfare conducted by terrorists. Panic makes the public and government fear and marginalize communities which are labelled as the ‘Other’. Its ‘security measures’ such as PREVENT proved to be ineffective. We argue that it has to be replaced by programs with a more nuanced approach and a deeper understanding of the issue, which will not fall into the trap of popular misconceptions, untamed anxiety and the vicious cycle of over-securitization completing the self-fulfilling prophecy.
Therefore, we recommend taking into consideration, further development and implementation of the following actions such as:
- Stop PREVENT
- Guarantee to all the EU and non-EU residents the right to stay in the UK
- Refrain from over-securitization
- Redefine radicalization through non-violent and violent forms.
- Fund scholarships on counter-terrorism assessment and counter-productive impacts
- Widen research on the impact of counter-terrorism measures on suspect communities
- Establish a fund for counter-terrorism victims
- Maintain efforts toward the suppression of radical and jihadi content on the internet
- Introduce a special legislation on hate discourses in online content
- Found a National Commission on the Protection of Minorities
- Launch a national study on minorities’ perception over government’s treatment.
We hope that prevention of over-securitization and the development of a more holistic approach in tackling the issue will be recognized and implemented by governmental bodies and NGOs across Britain. We strongly believe that an implementation of these strategies will help to leave Britain less exposed to foreign terrorism and will also provide a solid foundation for a safer and more united future.