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Tijdschrift Tijdschrift voor Veiligheid x Jaar 2013 x

    Preventive interventions against terrorist attacks can be justified on legal and moral grounds. The Dutch broad-based approach against terrorism also addresses radicalizations processes. It is, however, hard to justify why a government in a liberal democracy should be allowed to intervene in processes of radicalization where danger to society is not obvious. A reason to justify intervention is when a (former) radical asks for help. Theories based on the ideas of Kant and Rawls also allow for intervention if an individual’s autonomy is diminished because he is member of a sect or under the spell of a charismatic leader. Other interventions with regard to (prevention of) radicalization cannot be justified by deontological theories such as Kant’s and Rawls’. Virtue ethics or teleology would, however, allow interventions but only if they are geared towards helping the individual in their quest to the good life. This justification allows for interventions that are, for example, focused on supporting individuals to critically reflect, reason and discuss about the good life and a just society. Based on the teleological justification constraints can be derived for preventive interventions with regard to radicalization or even deradicalisation. Notice that individuals cannot be forced to join these programs because there is no legal basis.


Anke van Gorp
Dr. ir. Anke van Gorp is onderzoeker en hogeschooldocent Ethiek en Veiligheid aan de Hogeschool Utrecht, Integrale Veiligheidskunde, Faculteit FMR. E-mail: anke.vangorp@hu.nl

Arnold Roosendaal
Mr. Arnold Roosendaal is onderzoeker bij TNO, afdeling Strategy and Policy for the Information Society.
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