In recent years, the surge of terrorism in the Middle East has had a tremendous impact on Europe. The region has become home to an increasing number of terrorist organizations such as Hezbollah, Hamas, Al Qaeda and most notably in recent years, Islamic State (ISIS). The spill-over effect from the Syrian Civil War, continuing conflict in Iraq, the ongoing Libyan crisis and other local, sectarian, ethnic, religious and political conflicts in the Middle East have had a cumulative strategic impact on European security, politics and economics. Direct ISIS attacks and ISIS-inspired terrorism on European soil in Paris in November 2015 and in Brussels in March 2016, for example, have demonstrated to the European public and their leaders, that the Middle East is the main breeding ground for Islamist terrorism. This growing awareness is creating a space for more dialogue and cooperation with Israel, the most experienced country with respect to countering such terrorism.
Hezbollah has been involved in the Syrian Civil War which has resulted in more than 600,000 casualties and millions of refugees and displaced persons since 2011. ISIS has taken over vast territories and strategic assets in Iraq and Syria, disrupting a prior world order based on international norms. The jihadist group has attracted several thousand radicalized Muslims from Europe and trains them in its brutal methods. The implications for Europe when these jihadists return home are foreboding.
Amidst the threats of terror to Europe, ELNET is diligently working on the ground to ensure awareness among influential political leaders and policymakers to terrorist activities of different organizations and promote European-Israeli CT cooperation. ELNET leverages the impact of its unique network among European nations and the EU for the benefit of Israel-Europe bilateral relations.
Particularly noteworthy milestones in the fight against terrorism include the EU call for disarmament of Hamas in July 2014, and the EU determination of the military wing of Hezbollah as a terrorist organization in July 2013, partially curtailing the organization's funding and activities on European soil.
With each attack, France nudges rightward on security, Politico, Pierre Briançon
The Threat of Further ISIS Terrorism in Europe, PISM, Kacper Rękawek
Israel, Europe and the converging terror threat, Fathom, Dr. Amichai Magen
EU ministers vow new counter-terrorism rules after Paris attack, EUobserver
Netanyahu: Israel is standing by Europe, Europe must stand by Israel, The Jerusalem Post
Al-Qaida may carry out attacks to prove relevancy, EU warns, Adrian Croft, Haaretz
Terrorism to reach Europe, US, warns Saudi king, The Jerusalem Post
Inscrire le Hezbollah comme une organisation terroriste "est une décision politique", Le Monde, François Heisbourg, Fondation pour la Recherche Stratégique (FRS); Member of the Forum of Strategic Dialogue (FSD)
Europe vs. Hizbollah's Military Wing, Institute for National Security Studies (INSS) Insight, Dr. Benedetta Berti, Research Fellow, INSS; Participant, France-Israel Strategic Dialogue 2014, and Yoram Schweitzer, Senior Research Fellow and Director, Program on Terrorism and Low Intensity Conflict, INSS
European Union Adds Military Wing of Hezbollah to List of Terrorist Organizations, The New York Times, James Kanter and Jodi Rudoren