As mourning of the Mumbai attack continues, one thing is certain—intelligence cooperation between India and the rest of the world must increase. This is not only due to the transnational nature of terrorism, but also because states increasingly rely on international cooperation to combat terrorism.
A previously unknown group calling itself the Deccan Mujahedeen has claimed responsibility for the horrific attacks in Mumbai. While these attacks came during a period when Western intelligence chiefs were "expecting an al Qaeda spectacular terrorist attack" and came just hours after the FBI warned that al Qaeda may be "targetting New York's subways and railroads," the best guess of terrorism experts is that the Mumbai attacks were the work of local groups.
A few years ago I sat at a friend’s kitchen table on a cool summer evening in Dublin, Ireland. I don’t visit there very often, so I inevitably wanted to catch up on Irish sports, the music community, as well as the political scene of a country that, for its size, is well adept at making world headlines.
In its latest report entitled Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World, the National Intelligence Council has made various predictions about the continuing and changing influence of globalization around the world. It is argued that “as some countries become more invested in their economic well-being, incentives toward geopolitical stability could increase.” This is positive.
The National Intelligence Council’s “Global Trends 2025: A Transformed World” report considers likely scenarios for nearly all strategic global issues, including nuclear proliferation, terrorism, and climate change. Climate change in particular is an issue that we will be faced with on a daily basis two decades from now.
Amidst all the angst and astonishment about those wild and crazy Somali pirates, we seem to have forgotten that we’ve been through this movie before. It was more than two centuries ago when Muslim pirates were, after England, perhaps the most serious foreign threat bedeviling the new American republic. And the policy response too, is instructive today, though the issues raised are more complex.