Terrorism 101

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MissyJ's picture
Joined: 01/31/02
Posts: 3212
Terrorism 101

[h=1]NYU terrorism class asks students to plot terrorist attack[/h]
What do you think? Is the NY Post providing their readers with coverage on a truly controversial topic or are they doing a disservice through sensationalistic journalism?

Joined: 08/17/04
Posts: 2226

I see it as both because I'm conflicted on my thoughts on this project.

Controversial portion of my thoughts: It seems so odd to me to be having people plan a terrorist attack for a project because who knows who is taking this class? Anyone can fall off the deep end and think any of these projects is a great idea.

Sensationalist: The other part of me thinks that the project is a great idea. What better way to plan for potential attacks then to think like an attacker?

I also think sensationalism as it is NY Post and playing on the emotions of 9/11 still.

wlillie's picture
Joined: 09/17/07
Posts: 1796

It is a truly contraversial topic. I think it's insane to have the assignment in the first place but to pretend like an Oxford graduate should be teaching this class in New York is beyond that! Hypothetical Scenario on every page my big fat white butt. That'll help. Stupid idiot.

smsturner's picture
Joined: 05/11/09
Posts: 1303

I am conflicted too.

I'm pretty sure any terrorist that would be successful would be very very smart, and would have thought of anything these students could think of without help.
And if the students are going into a career in that line, it is a good way to help them to think like a terrorist so they can catch them someday.

I really think the newspaper is just looking for a fit to throw over something to sell their papers. It doesn't seem that out of line to write the paper imo.

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6560

It is a tuff situation. On one hand, you do not want to give any future terrorists any ideas. On the other hand, it is a good training excersise. Maybe a possible solution would be a psych evaluation first?

GloriaInTX's picture
Joined: 07/29/08
Posts: 4114

I think they could have easily modified this assignment to make it acceptable by having them write about a terrorist attack that might occur and the steps they could take to prevent it.

Spacers's picture
Joined: 12/29/03
Posts: 4100

I have no faith in any so-called news source that uses phrases such as, "He was blasted to hell in Yemen last year," and, "the Port Authority saw 37 cops vanish in the rubble." They are sensationalizing to sell papers, nothing else. This actually sounds like a great course for graduate-level candidates studying counter-terrorism. How is one supposed to prevent terrorism unless you can think like a terrorist? Before 9/11 no one ever thought of hijacking an airliner to use as a guided missile; now we have armored cockpit doors and you can't take blades onto an airplane. Imagine if someone had thought about this in a similar class 13 or 14 years ago? 3,000 people might still be alive and the WTC might still be standing.

We watched "Catch Me If You Can" a couple of weeks ago (great film BTW!) about a teenager named Frank Abagnale who, in a couple of years in the 1960s, wrote $2.5 million in bad checks and flew all over the world pretending to be a PanAm pilot. After he got caught, he started working for the federal government catching other check forgers; he's credited with creating many of the safety measures in today's checks as well as some of the things in U.S. currency that makes it harder for counterfeiters to duplicate. Sometimes to catch a thief you have to think like a thief. Or be a reformed thief.

GloriaInTX's picture
Joined: 07/29/08
Posts: 4114

A little OT but has anyone else been watching Homeland on Showtime? I think it is a great series.

ClairesMommy's picture
Joined: 08/15/06
Posts: 2299

"Spacers" wrote:

I have no faith in any so-called news source that uses phrases such as, "He was blasted to hell in Yemen last year," and, "the Port Authority saw 37 cops vanish in the rubble." They are sensationalizing to sell papers, nothing else. This actually sounds like a great course for graduate-level candidates studying counter-terrorism. How is one supposed to prevent terrorism unless you can think like a terrorist? Before 9/11 no one ever thought of hijacking an airliner to use as a guided missile; now we have armored cockpit doors and you can't take blades onto an airplane. Imagine if someone had thought about this in a similar class 13 or 14 years ago? 3,000 people might still be alive and the WTC might still be standing.

We watched "Catch Me If You Can" a couple of weeks ago (great film BTW!) about a teenager named Frank Abagnale who, in a couple of years in the 1960s, wrote $2.5 million in bad checks and flew all over the world pretending to be a PanAm pilot. After he got caught, he started working for the federal government catching other check forgers; he's credited with creating many of the safety measures in today's checks as well as some of the things in U.S. currency that makes it harder for counterfeiters to duplicate. Sometimes to catch a thief you have to think like a thief. Or be a reformed thief.

Wicked flick. Seen it a few times. Sometimes the truth is stranger than fiction. Pretty ironic that he now gets paid millions by the same agency who tried for years to catch him, to do the same thing he was doing illegally but now as an honest living.

AlyssaEimers's picture
Joined: 08/22/06
Posts: 6560

"ClairesMommy" wrote:

Wicked flick. Seen it a few times. Sometimes the truth is stranger than fiction. Pretty ironic that he now gets paid millions by the same agency who tried for years to catch him, to do the same thing he was doing illegally but now as an honest living.

Our neighbor across the street's full time job it to try to break into computers. He then fixes the whole so that others can not.

Joined: 04/12/03
Posts: 1686

"GloriaInTX" wrote:

I think they could have easily modified this assignment to make it acceptable by having them write about a terrorist attack that might occur and the steps they could take to prevent it.

I think this is semantics. Only from a different POV.

Joined: 08/17/04
Posts: 2226

"ethanwinfield" wrote:

I think this is semantics. Only from a different POV.

I was thinking the same thing. Seems like they still have to come up with the event...same thing to me.