Archive for the ‘Outreach’ Category

9/11 memories from my pen pal

When I asked Nataliya about her experience and memories of 9/11 this is what she responded with.  I found it very interesting that she started her email with, “thanks God Iraq is far away, so I’m not so mad about terrorism :)”

After being in this class for 3 months I feel like this is a common misconception…terrorism is everywhere.

Nataliya: Memories of 9/11 are quite odd I would say. I remember how I was watching morning news and saw these buildings falling down. I was completely shocked because I still couldn’t believe that that was not a Hollywood screenplay but reality.  Read more

My Definition of Terrorism

I could spend 250 words defining terrorism but in all actuality it cannot be defined.  If it could be, it would have been already.  Terrorism is fear and as long as fear exists then so will terrorism.  It is living and breathing and omnipresent.

Does the Anonymization of Comments Result in More Radical Behavior?

One of the primary advantages that many have had about the Internet is the idea that the voices of everyone is available to many that would otherwise be silenced. Indeed, this very post falls under that same category as does all of WordPress actually. The problem is, I will argue, is that the ones most likely to comment on an news article are in fact the ones that feel the most emotion towards the issue of the article rather than the most rational. Read more

Conversation with Netherland

The other day I had a chance to talk with my friend Frido over email in regards to terrorism in the Netherlands. It was interesting to get his perspective on the subject. Here is what he said:

“Concerning terrorism, as far as I know there are no extreme terrorists groups in the Netherlands. However there are parties within in the government that take a radical political position against Muslims and the Koran. Read more

Definition of Terrorism

Terrorism Defined

Terrorism: interpretation

(1) In this Act “terrorism” means the use or threat of action where:

            (a) the action falls within subsection (2),

            (b) the use or threat is designed to influence the government or to intimidate the public or a section of the public, and

            (c) the use or threat is made for the purpose of advancing a political, religious or ideological cause.

Read more

Coming to terms – A talk with a Greek Journalist

When talking with my Greek penpal, something very interesting came up in terms of the way that Americans view terrorism. Read more

Americans in the World (Three Cups of Tea)

As  read the book Three Cups of Tea, I couldn’t help but notice that Greg Mortenson is an exceptional person.  Also an exceptional American.  This is, I suppose, part of the point of the book, but a related aspect gnawed on me:

Greg Mortenson showed the people of northern Pakistan a very positive example of America and Americans.  Thanks to his efforts, they most likely have a fairly positive view of America.  For instance, Fatima Batool remarks, “I’ve heard some people say that Americans are bad.  But we love Americans.  They are the most kind people for us.  They are the only ones who cared to help us.” (Page 224)

But… I feel that since Mr. Mortenson is not representative of the American people, the views he is spreading are disingenuous. Read more

Wake up and smell the tea

“Three Cups of Tea” effectively displayed a Westerners effort toward combating terrorism through education. In my opinion, this seems to be an effective way of reaching out to new generations. I believe that increased levels of education, both personally and globally would develop a better overall understanding of people of the world.

            Education initially begins with one’s self, through personal knowledge about people’s differences around the world. Understanding the mindset of the terrorists and their actions, would help combat the desire to solve these issues. This was shown in “Three Cups of Tea” when the main character was described as using the westerners’ methodology, which was ineffective in Pakistan. By educating himself of the local culture, his success was obtained. In this course, Terrorism and the Press, this approach is also taken through the education of attempting to interpret and understand the mind and motives of terrorists, in order to combat the concept and potentially have our own “Three Cups of Tea” at ASU.

            In terms of the development of the schools, the curriculum should not consist solely of the teachings of one faith, ideology, or culture. Multiple ideas should be presented to the younger generations in an effort to seed the concept of tolerance and worldwide understanding. The concept of global focus would lessen the biases and prejudices that arise from schools that have curriculum based on one particular point of view that is embedded in these children at such a young age. This will also broaden students’ knowledge of the world, and increase tolerance in a preventative way.

            It is important to recognize that the lack of education is not the sole reason behind acts of terrorism and violence. However, if the concept of “the world is everybody’s playground” was enforced in school systems worldwide, it may increase the level of understanding amongst communities and in turn prevent the amount of violence that exists. Roaming in a world of diversity with both eyes shut, we see nothing but what one side of the story. I believe in the concept of educating ourselves of our surroundings and varying beliefs, the world needs to wake up and smell the tea.

Teaching Tolerance and Maintaining Purity

The ambition of Greg Mortenson to educate the children of northern Pakistan is a formidable task. An additional benefit that he realized after building numerous schools is that they provide an opportunity for the impoverished to receive a balanced education. This is important considering the extremist education being taught at the Wahhabi madrassas to teenage boys. Read more

My Cup of Tea

Although my intention is not to be pessimistic, the overly positive theme of 3 Cups of Tea was a little hard for me to handle. My opinion is not to dismiss the works of Mortenson as useless, but I feel the book could have used less objectivity (despite the difficulty the author claimed in this task). The building of schools could prove useful in alleviating international conflicts, but the real effects of the school have yet to be seen. At this time, it is still too hasty to count Mortenson’s efforts as a success. He is certainly to be commended as unique and understanding, but not yet successful. Read more

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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.