Research, Information and Communication Unit

A new unit in the Home Office called the Research, Information and Communication Unit has been set up specifically to counter al-Qa’eda’s efforts to manipulate individuals and groups.

MI5 says the internet is an important factor in exposing people to radical views.

But it adds: “More often radicalisation seems to arise from local contacts and from peers.

“Exposure to a forceful and inspiring figure, already committed to extremism, can be important here.

“This person may be associated with a particular place (eg. a mosque) or can be a national or international figure, seen on video or heard on tapes.

”Inspiration from a distance is important and there is evidence that the rise of the internet, with its ability to connect people, to pass ideas between them, and then pass those ideas on to others has had a significant impact on the accessibility and flow of radical ideas.”

H/T:  Chief Reynolds

Reading more about British Home Secretary Jacqui Smith’s speech to the International Centre for Study of Radicalisation and Political Violence  comparing cyber jihadis to pedophiles might just strike a nerve among the porn-addicted, sister-raping, basement-dwelling wannabes, but I have my doubts about the Brits.  Too PC to carry it off.  But maybe they’ll surprise me.

Smith warned that the state could not combat the problem alone, but also relied on citizens defending the “common good”.

“It is a weakness of terrorists as a tactic that the way we respond determines the impact they will have. Whether terrorists succeed is ultimately up to us, not up to them,” she said.

“An effective response to terrorism is never dependent solely on the state and solely on law enforcement,” she added. “It depends on us. On the active commitment of individuals and communities and to certain rights and responsibilities.”

Sounds good, so far.

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9 Comments

Filed under PSYOP

9 responses to “Research, Information and Communication Unit

  1. Pingback: “Channeling messages through volunteers in internet forums” « Civilian Irregular Information Defense Group

  2. M1

    Of late we’ve been drunkenly re-thinking more ´n more rounda’boutz ideas pertaining to Civilian Irregular Information Offense Groups.Worrisome Stay-Behind entities. Chaotic response protocol…

  3. CIIOG. I love it.

    Stay-Behinds have potential.

    Read Abnaa al-Amriki

  4. They say the intention is to produce ‘counter narratives’ and meet the ‘ideological challenges’ posed by the internet – but what guarantees do we have that the unit will not be abused by any large number of financial and political interest groups? If it is to be based squarely on volunteers, how do we that groups like the UK’s pro-Israel lobby, ‘Labour Friends of Israel’ will deluge it with their own ‘counter narratives’? There’s already a disproportionate amount of anti-Arab threads on the boards of the Daily Mirror Forum.

    And let’s face it, this particular lobby is powerful enough as it is. The ‘Labour Friends of Israel’ lobby boasts members like Tony Blair and Gordon Brown, Lord Levy, Lord Sainsbury, David Abrahams and John Mendelsohn (Gordon Brown’s new party fundraiser). And all these people found themselves at the centre of both ‘Donorgate’ and ‘Cash For Honours’ scandals.

    It’s decsribed on the Home Office website as a trilateral unit. It’s hosted by the Office for Security and Counter terrorism but it reports to both the Home office and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. What assurances do we have that RICU operations are going to be confined exclusively to militant extremism and not serve wider agendas like home and foreign policy?

    There was always a conflict of interests at the heart of Blair’s role as Special Envoy to the Middle East and his role as Advisor to JP Morgan Chase. JP Morgan chase are major shareholders in US and Israel defense Contractors, Raytheon and Northrop. Both contractors have been on the receiving end of massive contracts arising as a result of the Israel/Lebanon conflict and the War in Iraq. Who better to assess the risks for a financial investment bank than Britain’s own envoy to the Middle East?

    RiCU is just a cynical attempt to launch the War Lobby into cyberspace if you ask me.

  5. All I know about RICU is what I read on UK websites. I often run across interesting PSYOP stuff from the Brits. It helps that I read your language fluently.

    I’m a friend of Israel, myself. Israeli finesse at psychological operations and perception management keep Israel alive.

    What assurances do you in Britain have that elements of your government like MI-5 or some super-secret EU KGB won’t do much worse than what you are concerned RICU might do?

    Your society is worth defending?

    Bad men who kill innocent people while claiming to be holy warriors should be opposed, shouldn’t they?

  6. I didn’t know Britain had a war lobby any more.

  7. yassersmith

    ”The Lavon Affair refers to the scandal over a failed Israeli covert operation in Egypt known as Operation Susannah, in which Israeli military intelligence planted bombs in Egyptian, American and British-owned targets in Egypt in the summer of 1954. It became known as the Lavon Affair after the Israeli defense minister Pinhas Lavon, who was forced to resign because of the incident, or euphemistically as the Unfortunate Affair. Israel admitted responsibility in 2005 when Israeli President Moshe Katzav honored the nine Egyptian Jewish agents who were involved.” – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lavon_Affair

    I suppose we could also have talked about the pro-Saudi lobby too just to balance it up.

    “Bad men who kill innocent people while claiming to be holy warriors should be opposed, shouldn’t they?”

    And good men pin the blame on innocent holy warriors just to coerce and enlist the support of the Western World in their fight for some ‘spiritual homeland’ from time to time.

    Why should the rest of the Western World stand idly by whilst Israel uses missiles produced in the West to knock seven bells of shit out of civilians on the West Bank?

    Israel continues to use the same old tricks they’ve always used. The Lavon Affair was not some unique event.

    The point about RICU is that it is staffed by volunteers – leaving it wide open to abuse by anyone, from either end of the propaganda spectrum. At the very least it could be in very inexperienced hands – which might only escalate problems rather than contain them.

    Given that the UK and the US were the first to give al-qaeda their own distinctive brand, by rights they should also be the first to launch this ‘rebranding’.

    You might read our language fluently but you have little command of what our leaders are thinking.

    You can’t dissociate RICU from MI-5. RICU is hosted by the Office for Security and Counter Terrorism at the Home and Foreign Office – it’s not just some idle civil service crack. It’s been set up to behave in much the same way the Foreign Office’s Information and Research Department (IRD) behaved during the Cold War. And even our own senior ministers realised how much the IRD was being abused.

    It’s propaganda for the ‘touchy-feely’ generation – it is not an attempt to disarm or reduce the threat but to raise it.

    Have you actually been a forum like The Daily Mirror Forum? The boards are routinely flooded with anti-arab propaganda masquerading as concern about extremism. It’s obvious where RICU are conducting their ‘counter-narrative’ campaigns. They are not challenging posts, they are starting them.

    What is Zionism if its not religious extremism?

    When was the last time you saw a Buddhist attempt to claim disputed territory by force?

    All in the name of religion.

  8. yasser, you forgot to mention the bombing of the King David Hotel and the attack on USS Liberty, both of which have as much relevence to the RICU as the Lavon Affair.

    I made no claim to understand your leaders, never been on the Daily Mirror Forum.

    “innocent holy warriors”?

  9. Pingback: Distance Recruiting and Training of Low-IQ Lily Whites « Civilian Irregular Information Defense Group