Archive for the ‘Latest Cases’ Category

Pen Pal Cooperation: Facebook Or Tomahawk Revolutions?

My Pen Pal is Stevo Pendarovski – assistant professor of International Security, Foreign policy and Globalization at University American College – Skopje.

He researches and writes on International Relations, Intelligence and National Security, US Foreign Policy. He was National Security Advisor to the two Presidents of the Republic of Macedonia. Pendarovski writes a weekly column in the newspaper “Dnevnk” where he brings global issues to light for its readers in Macedonia.

For the blog of Terrorism and Press class, we exchanged our opinions on the airstrikes in Libya and editorial article posted on, the online edition of Haaretz Newspaper in Israel. The editorial West’s intervention in Libya may undermine future civil revolts” focus is the dilemma about the legitimacy of revolutions in those African countries, especially in Libya. The editorial extrapolate that peacekeeping action equally needs peace building efforts.

Pendarovski wants to be a bit cynical and according to him ”the above mentioned dilemma about the nature of revolutions is not real since both Facebook and Tomahawk missiles are preeminently western products.

“What should be the right approach in my opinion is judging on presence or eventual lack of democratic credentials on the part of the local anti-regimes movements and their legitimacy amid their nations. But what about the “quality” of revolution if there is certain percentage of “imported” legitimacy let says from USA, France or Israel”, asked Pendarovski.

Libyan rebels react on the frontline of the outskirts of Ajdabiya in eastern Libya

Credits for photo and photo info: Anja Niedringhaus/AP Photo/March 21, 2011

My response is that the editorial of concludes wealthy states should support and invest in the building of the societies after the revolution period. It is not that important who is behind the scene of those revolutions and whether those are Facebook or Tomahawk revolutions.

What is important is the post-revolution period and helping people to rebuild the state. The Western coalition Odyssey Dawn operation in Libya should protect the civilians. The protection of the civilian population is in the focus of the UN Resolution 1973, which establish no-fly zone and enable the action against pro-Gaddafi forces. However, this could be changed soon with the possibilites to use NATO in order to overthrow the Gaddafi regime, as BBC is reporting today in their article “Libia crisis: Allies thrash out NATO role”.

We will see in the following day how the situation will develop in Libya. However, I agree with the Haaretz’s editorial “West’s intervention in Libya may undermine future civil revolts” point of importance to rebuild the states where the revolutions are taking place. This has equal importance for the citizens of those states as the military action support.

The Hurt Locker- Terrorism Undefined

Although portrayed from the viewpoint of a soldier, Kathryn Bigelow’s The Hurt Locker initially appears to be decidedly against the war and confronts the issue of what the definition of terrorism is. Read more

Penpal: Conversation with Kenya

Me: Can you tell me your story about finding out about the terrorist attacks on the Twin Towers in New York on 9/11/2001? Like, how you found out about it, when, and what you thought about it? Read more

New Zealand Pen Pal’s Thoughts on Eco-Terrorism

Today, my pen pal and I discussed eco-terrorism.  What I really enjoyed about this groups presentation was its originality.  I wasn’t expecting a topic like theirs, so it was very exciting to learn about something so new.  It also held my attention!  Needless to say, when I signed onto skype and saw that my pen pal, Jaron, was logged on—I quickly started to talk to him about this topic called “eco-terrorism”.  Oddly enough, he had quite a lot of knowledge regarding the subject.  Here were some of his views:

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An hour with Aaron Brown

Aaron Brown’s visit to the Terrorism and the Press “think-tank” on Thursday, April 22, was nothing short of captivating. Although I was not aware of the extra credit assignment regarding guest speakers in the course, I was compelled to start writing down what Brown was saying.

Former CNN anchor Aaron Brown sat down with the class to discuss his views on terrorism and the press

As if it was a press conference or a one-on-one interview, I knew he was going to say things I would regret missing if I didn’t have them down on paper. Throughout the course of the conversation, the class developed a relationship with Brown, and as the class became more comfortable asking questions, he began to answer is a frank, candid manner.

Brown’s opinions on terrorism and the “War on Terror” are what dominated the conversation from the beginning. Being that it is a course dedicated to the topic of terrorism, almost ever question he faced was related to terrorism in some way.

The sound bites he provided were, in some cases, remarkable. At one point, when asked about how he fell about Timothy McVey’s execution and subsequent request to have it nationally televised, Brown said, “I would have shown McVey’s execution at the IMAX theatre complete with the 3-D goggles.”

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A conversation with Lebanese pen pal: “Econo-terrorism”

A conversation with my pen pal from Lebanon, Winston Smith*, discussed a recent incident in Lebanon and how the media portrayed it:

“A recent event in lebanon is hezbollah responding to israeli threats against lebanon. Nasrallah told them that if they  think of bombing us again, Hezbollah we’ll circumsize them again. pretty tense…people are talking about another war in the summer; but then again if it’s on everyone’s mind then it wont happen. its all about disturbing our economy. they’re thinking of raising TVA to 15%..CRAZY so that might lead to some domestic disturbance. the way news is portrayed here is rather simple. the anchor says a few words about the incident and then we hear it again from some minister or member of parliament as the camera switches from the studio to the Parliament or Sara’ii. Or they buy some feed from a foreign (developed) station and just air it on their time. yap yap yap…you’re class sounds soo much fun. terrorism and media. terrorism sells ratings…media sells terrorism, its a love story you can’t miss.”

The impact of terrorism, or more so, acts of violence on the economy? Perhaps we can coin this “econo-terrorism”? A popular motive behind acts of violence and disturbances in countries around the globe.

More Penpal Posts: Third Cup of Tea Reaction

It seems like a really forgot to put up the posts after I performed the requirements in the outline for the class.  Yikes, I really should have kept better track of putting things up on time.  I have a more general post I’m preparing unrelated to penpal stuff.

As you may have seen from my previous post, my third cup of tea is based on my own expertise in computer software.  My penpal George responded to my post with the following:

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Ilias on SB 1070 and racism

The latest bill SB 1070 has come under a lot of fire here in the US and I wanted to know if Ilias had heard anything about it or had any opinions. It turns out he had heard of it and had VERY strong opinions concerning how sensitive America has become to the issue of racism. While this isn’t a conversation of traditional terrorism, some claim that it terrorizes innocent citizens so I found it an appropriate topic. Again, profanity has been censored; Ilias has some very passionate stances on the issue.

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Ilias on Eco-Terrorism

Ilias and I discussed Eco-terrorism and he has a very strong stance on it but not an extremist one. I have removed occurrences of profanity; Ilias and I have become somewhat comfortable and he expresses things with a certain intensity at times.

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Terrorism and the Press

This blog is an integral part of a special section of Honors 394 Spring 2010, Arizona State University. Rather than a routine history course this dynamic, interactive seminar explores the interplay between terrorism and television, and other media sources on-line and in print. 26 students and their global pen pals comprise the bloggers. We welcome all to share their opinions, pertinent observations, insights, comments, feedback. Please post in a responsible manner.