Skip to Main Content
Have library access? Log in through your library
Research Report


Alessandro Politi
Copyright Date: Oct. 1, 1997
Pages: 67
  • Cite this Item

Table of Contents

  1. (pp. None)

    The terms transnational organized crime, illicit drug trafficking and international terrorism are today frequently used in connection with international security or stability, and are often described as ‘new risks’ or ‘non-traditional risks’. The proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) might also be listed, but in this paper it will not be considered separately; it will, however, be included, as an additional element of insecurity, in the discussion of organized crime and terrorism.

    These three risks are not new per se; what is new is the consideration that they should be accorded, because they have become much more important than...

  2. (pp. None)

    As there is a lack of consensus, on both the nature of the risks and the degree of international cooperation, in the international community, it is necessary to propose some definitions. Since there are several controversial definitions of each of these new risks, the paper will limit itself to those that are the most useful for research.

    Academics, jurists and police forces are far from agreeing on the definition of transnational organized crime.(2) There are, however, four elements in the definition of organized crime on which a large majority of authors agree: the existence of an organized, stable hierarchy; the...

  3. (pp. None)

    In this chapter the strategic relevance of five aspects of these two risks will be analysed: drug trafficking as the most powerful resource for transnational organized crime; nuclear smuggling as the most visible danger; the concept of drug geopolitics and the effects of the control of drug-related resources on international security; the dangerous liaison between drugs, armed struggle and covert operations; and, finally, the nonphysical dimension of organized crime, namely money laundering and computer crime.

    Transnational and national organized crime have to be considered together because, beyond the initial stage where it is possible for organized crime to operate exclusively...

  4. (pp. None)

    ‘International terrorist attacks against US interests rose to 99 in 1995 from 66 in 1994, and the number of US citizens killed rose from four to 12. The total number of fatalities from international terrorism worldwide declined from 314 in 1994 to 165 in 1995, but the number of persons wounded increased by a factor of ten - to 6,291 persons; 5,500 were injured in a gas attack in the Tokyo subway system in March.’(66)

    Reviewing the US Department of State’s 1995 data, concerning the 28 states of the WEU family, in relation to the seven types of terrorist action...

  5. (pp. None)

    This chapter will try to sum up the main features of the political and institutional debate on the new risks as they affect European security. Attention will be devoted to developments that call for greater coordination between law enforcement and military forces in the fight against these risks. The first two parts of the chapter will be devoted to the European Union, the remaining two to initiatives concerning terrorism and the activity of other international forums.

    If the efforts made to implement the CFSP may appear to lack coherence and the necessary speed, in comparison European cooperation in Justice and...

  6. (pp. None)

    In the preceding chapters we have shown why the concept of security is and needs to be perceived at a multidimensional level, how the so-called new risks belong fully to the grand strategic dimension of this security and what the relevance of each is in strategic and political terms. Particular attention has been devoted to the emerging need for civil-military arrangements at international institutional level.

    In this final chapter, we will try to explain: why, in a multidimensional security environment, it makes sense, in addition to the existing police assets, to use also the military ones; why the involvement of...

  7. (pp. None)

    Transnational organized crime, drug trafficking and international terrorism are three new risks that must be fully included in the strategic picture of European security. At the political level, documents like ‘A common security concept for the 27 countries of the WEU’, the ‘Reflection on European security interests on the eve of the 21st century’, the ‘Reflection Group's report’, the OSCE 'Lisbon Declaration on a common and comprehensive security model for Europe for the twenty-first century' and the ‘Barcelona Declaration adopted at the Euro-Mediterranean Conference’ express an increasing consensus. Conceptually, the risks are a matter of grand strategy and they must...