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How to Stop Terrorism in Europe

Germany’s new anti-terrorism measures are just the latest in a series of actions by European countries to boost internal security. But while such steps may have some impact, the only way to mitigate the terror threat is to discredit the ideology that underpins it.

BERLIN – Europe is under pressure. Integrating asylum-seekers and other migrants – 1.1 million in Germany alone in 2015 – into European society poses a major challenge, one that has been complicated by a spike in crimes committed by new arrivals. Making matters worse, many European Muslims have become radicalized, with some heading to Iraq and Syria to fight under the banner of the so-called Islamic State, and others carrying out terror attacks at home. Add to that the often-incendiary nativist rhetoric of populist political leaders, and the dominant narrative in Europe is increasingly one of growing insecurity.

Many European countries are moving to strengthen internal security. But their approach is incomplete, at best.

Germany and others have introduced new measures, including an increase in police personnel, accelerated deportation of migrants who have committed crimes, and the authority to strip German citizenship from those who join foreign “terror militias.” Other steps include enhanced surveillance of public places and the creation of new units focused on identifying potential terrorists through their Internet activities.

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