Ep 84 An INTREPID Podcast Special Part 3 -- Foreign Fighters and Counter Violent Extremism Interventions

Stephanie and Craig are very pleased to welcome Michael King to the show, for our oft-promised third episode in our study of foreign terrorist fighters. Our purpose in this series is to canvass the range of possible legal and policy responses to foreign fighter returnees. In episode 73 we walked through the facts on the ground in this area, with a focus on Canadians who affiliated with Daesh. In episode 74 we considered the international law issues around their detention in Syria by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the Canadian law issues surrounding their prosecution in Canada. In this episode, we examine the question of what happens if prosecution is unavailable, for reason of insufficient evidence or because the person’s conduct may not have crossed a criminal law. Still, these people have affiliated in some way with a terrorist group — and have radicalized to a point of accepting violence. Even where people are prosecuted, they will be sentenced to a finite term, raising questions of rehabilitation. To address these questions and more, Michael joins us from the Canada Centre for Community Engagement and Prevention of Violence, based in Public Safety Canada. We talk briefly about the Centre’s on-going work, before diving into the phenomenon of radicalization to violence, the policy dilemmas associated with returning foreign terrorist fighters and the question of “disengagement” from violence versus “deradicalization”. Michael walks through the social science in this area, as well as the various initiatives taking place in Canada. Thanks to Michael for becoming an INTREPID alum!

Craig Forcese