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Should intelligence services have a ‘licence to kill’?

The ‘University of the Netherlands’ is a series of lectures in which academics address topics based on their expertise. In the latest instalment, cultural historian Simon Willmetts discusses how intelligence services operate and what has changed since 9/11.

Members of the British intelligence service MI6 do not have a ‘licence to kill’ and their job isn’t nearly as glamorous as the James Bond movies would have us believe. But over the past 20 years, it has become more common for intelligence services to not only gather and analyse intelligence but also resort to murder. They do so all around the world, with increasingly advanced methods. In his lecture, Willmetts discusses whether intelligence services should have a ‘licence to kill’ and the resulting consequences. 

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