The development of “security policy” is never straightforward. From the perspective of the desk of a practitioner, what is and is not security may seem clear, and even objective. But “security policy” is rarely clear — look at the differences of opinion in Europe over whether to act in response to the uprising in Libya — and the consequences always hard to foresee.
Indeed, when we consider the ideas and practices of other nations and cultures, and indeed, of Europe’s own ideas and practices in the past, it is clear that security means different things to different peoples in different places and in different times. This policy brief seeks to showcase three ideas of security, as a means of understanding how we shape our security policies today.