Stakeholders of (De)-radicalisation | September 2021
Authors: Volodymyr Ishchenko & Mihai Varga – Freie Universität Berlin
The report synthesises the findings of country reports that mapped the contexts, trends and perceptions of the violent threats as well as the main radicalisation agents and de-radicalisation stakeholders in 17 countries covered by the De-Radicalisation in Europe and Beyond: Detect, Resolve, Reintegrate (D.Rad) project: the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Austria, Finland, Poland, Hungary, Slovenia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Georgia, Turkey, Israel, Jordan and Iraq. We unpack the variety of social mechanisms of (de-)radicalisation in the context of the global crisis of political representation since the neoliberal turn in the West and the failure of state developmentalist projects in the peripheral and semi-peripheral countries. The report identifies right-wing radicalisation as the main rising violent threat across the D.Rad countries, even though other cases of radicalisation should not be disregarded. We explain conceptual, methodological and institutional reasons for underestimating right-wing violent attacks and the elite and mass framing mechanisms that legitimate or downplay them. Summarising discussion of the main agents of radicalisation in their socio-political ecosystems across the country reports demonstrates the social embeddedness and connectiveness of the violence agents that crucially influence the dynamics of radicalisation. We demonstrate that the right-wing violence agents commonly benefit from superior access to resources for violence, political opportunities and allies among the elites than other cases of radicalisation. Finally, we challenge the assumptions behind the prevailing approaches to prevent and reverse radicalisation processes based on the homogenising concepts of “extremism” and “terrorism.” This perception underlies the dominant approaches to de-radicalisation focused on the paths to and from radical politics primarily via individual conversion to and from extremist ideologies and contributes to the limited focus, political biases and overreliance on civil societies with questionable efficiency of the preventive strategies.