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Symposium 2012

Solution for Security in the Face of Globalization

The Challenge

Globalization has transformed the nature of crime and the need for security. Under current systems of justice, crime fighting and crime prevention tend to be conducted in local, national and internati ...

Globalization has transformed the nature of crime and the need for security. Under current systems of justice, crime fighting and crime prevention tend to be conducted in local, national and international policy silos. These systems are no longer appropriate for dealing with the globalization of crime, which has come to include multifaceted, complex and highly interrelated domains, such as terrorism, drug trafficking, cybercrime and urban violence.

Military and other public safety forces should adopt the "strong and helping hand" approach.

Force alone is not suitable for fighting crime; a more holistic strategy has to be adopted to fight the roots of crime, such as deficiencies in education, health or nutrition. If necessary, force has to be used in a targeted manner and only after long-term planning. Pen and mind have done more than any weaponry, At the same time, a strong arm not only uses force but it can also lift.

Criminal activity has become more mobile, more innovative and more aggressive. It has also had more impact on the global community. Combating this type of crime is not a traditional military skill. If military forces have to be used against globalized crime, it is first necessary to change the way armed forces are seen. Safety forces need to operate with restraint and discretion in a precise and principled manner, as postulated by the "strong arm and helping hand" ("braço forte-mão amiga") approach adopted in Brazil. This approach describes the use of targeted force where and if necessary ("strong arm") and at the same time the offer to help with the soft factors ("helping hand"): Nutrition, housing, health and education, which are pivotal preconditions to eradicating the breeding grounds of criminal motivation.

To pursue a more holistic approach, military and police forces need to involve private stakeholders, for example, through public-private partnerships. Governments cannot delivery public safety and security alone or at least they cannot bear the financial burden alone: crimefighting has become an expensive undertaking.

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