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Intellectual security theory in combating extremism and terrorism

Jul 01,2024 - Last updated at Jul 01,2024

In our contemporary world, intellectual security has become a topic of great importance for maintaining the stability and progress of societies. The theory of intellectual security is defined as a set of concepts and procedures that aim to protect minds and ideas from deviation and extremism and works to promote moderate and constructive thinking. Intellectual security is a crucial element in achieving security, social and economic stability in countries.

Intellectual security constitutes the basis for peace and coexistence in societies, as it contributes to reducing extremism and violence resulting from deviant ideas in the modern era, as the risks of intellectual deviation have increased because of technological development and easy access to information, which allows extremist ideas to spread quickly through social media and the Internet.

Intellectual security is not only limited to confronting extremist ideas, but also includes promoting constructive and positive ideas that contribute to developing societies and achieving their progress. Achieving intellectual security requires cooperation between all segments of society, including educational, religious and cultural institutions, in addition to the public media and social media.

The components of intellectual security include a set of basic elements that work together to achieve the desired goal. The most prominent of these features are:

Educational institutions play a major role in shaping individuals’ awareness and promoting the values ​​of tolerance and moderation. Educational curricula must include materials that focus on promoting critical thinking and confronting extremist ideas.

The media is considered an effective means of spreading awareness and promoting positive values. The media must adhere to professional and ethical standards to convey information objectively and accurately, and contribute to spreading the culture of peace, coexistence and tolerance.

Governments must establish legislation and policies aimed at confronting extremism and protecting intellectual security, and these legislation can include deterrent penalties for activities that promote extremist ideas.

Civil society organisations play an important role in enhancing intellectual security by organising awareness-raising events and programmes targeting all segments of society.

But on the other hand, there are challenges facing intellectual security. Despite its importance, it faces many challenges that hinder its full achievement. The most prominent of these challenges are:

Modern technology contributes to facilitating access to information, but at the same time it allows extremist ideas to spread rapidly, which requires finding a balance between freedom of expression and combating extremist ideas.

Cultural diversity within society can be a challenge in achieving intellectual security, as ideas and values ​​differ between different groups, which necessitates strengthening the values ​​of coexistence, tolerance and accepting the other as he is not what the other party wants.

Political and economic changes affect the stability of societies and may contribute to increasing extremism. There must be economic and social policies that promote stability and reduce poverty and unemployment, thus reducing the chances of the spread of extremist ideas.

Therefore, we must work together to find future strategies to enhance intellectual security, and to achieve intellectual security in the long term and follow comprehensive strategies that include:

International cooperation to confront extremism and intellectual terrorism. This cooperation may include exchanging information and experiences between countries and organising joint conferences and events.

Supporting scientific research and studies that focus on understanding the causes of intellectual extremism and ways to confront it. This research can contribute to developing effective strategies to enhance intellectual security.

Promoting economic opportunities and providing a stable work environment that can contribute to reducing intellectual extremism, there must be policies that support young people and provide them with job and training opportunities.

The Contemporary Theory of Intellectual Security available on scientific websites can be used to address cases of extremism and terrorism, because intellectual security is an urgent necessity to achieve stability and peace in societies, and achieving it requires joint efforts from all segments of society and its institutions, in addition to international cooperation to confront the growing challenges in this field. 

Finally, the Jordanian experience in combating extremism and terrorism can be reviewed, which is characterised by advanced legislation and policies, including the amended Anti-Terrorism Law of 2006, which strengthens penalties for terrorist activities. The government also established the “Al Hussein” Centre to train security forces in combating terrorism and is working to enhance awareness and education through educational programmes and cooperation with religious institutions to promote moderate values ​​and confront extremist ideology.

 

The writer is a professor of strategic studies at Al Hussein Bin Talal University

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