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tsuomela : terrorism   86

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Days of Rage by Bryan Burrough |
"The Weathermen. The Symbionese Liberation Army. The FALN. The Black Liberation Army. The names seem quaint now, when not forgotten altogether. But there was a time in America, during the 1970s, when bombings by domestic underground groups were a daily occurrence. The FBI combated these and other groups as nodes in a single revolutionary underground, dedicated to the violent overthrow of the American government. In Days of Rage, Bryan Burrough re-creates an atmosphere that seems almost unbelievable just forty years later, conjuring a time of native-born radicals, most of them “nice middle-class kids,” smuggling bombs into skyscrapers and detonating them inside the Pentagon and the U.S. Capitol, at a Boston courthouse and a Wall Street restaurant packed with lunchtime diners. The FBI’s fevered response included the formation of a secret task force called Squad 47, dedicated to hunting the groups down and rolling them up. But Squad 47 itself broke many laws in its attempts to bring the revolutionaries to justice, and its efforts ultimately ended in fiasco. Drawing on revelatory interviews with members of the underground and the FBI who speak about their experiences for the first time, Days of Rage is a mesmerizing book that takes us into the hearts and minds of homegrown terrorists and federal agents alike and weaves their stories into a spellbinding secret history of the 1970s. "
book  publisher  1970s  history  terrorism  american 
january 2017 by tsuomela
Tomgram: Engelhardt, Field of Nightmares | TomDispatch
"Dirty Wars is really the secret history of how Washington launched a series of undeclared wars in the backlands of the planet and killed its way to something that ever more closely resembled an actual global war, creating a world of enemies out of next to nothing.  Think of it as a bizarre form of unconscious wish fulfillment and the results -- they came! -- as a field of nightmares."
book  review  terrorism  terror  war  journalism  military  military-industrial-complex  2000s  foreign-affairs  blowback 
april 2013 by tsuomela
Boston, West, Newtown: For Whom the Bells Toll, For Whom the Alarms Ring | The Nation
"What separates these victims from one another? Surely not innocence, for they are all innocent, and they all deserve to be mourned. And yet the blunt and awful truth is that, as a nation, we pay orders of magnitude more attention to the victims of terrorism than we do to the over 4,500 Americans killed each year while on the job."
tragedy  risk  news  media  journalism  statistics  terrorism 
april 2013 by tsuomela
Douglas Rushkoff - Blog - CNN: The Terror of Real Time
"Of course, none of the usual narratives apply, for we no longer live in a world with beginnings, middles and ends. That quaint structure went out with the Industrial Age and the moon shot. We no longer design career paths; we no longer invest in the future. We occupy; we freelance; we trade derivatives. Everything happens in the now."
urgency  terrorism  terror  fear  future  future-shock  essay 
april 2013 by tsuomela
Boston, Texas, and the roads: affect and the power of normalization - New APPS: Art, Politics, Philosophy, Science
"It is not to minimize the horror of the Boston bombings -- indeed, it is to highlight it -- that I point to the difference between media coverage of Boston and that of the West, Texas explosion. The former was roughly 24/7 on the big cable channels, with some coverage of the Texas explosion. But then when you look to the road fatalities stats, you realize there's something amazing when 30,000 deaths a year doesn't gain any national news at all. So what's going on? Some observations below."
ethics  media  news  journalism  risk  philosophy  affect  normalization  politics  terrorism 
april 2013 by tsuomela
Can Hydras Eat Unknown-Unknowns for Lunch?
"The general idea behind the Hydra narrative in a broad sense (not just what Taleb has said/will say in October) is that hydras eat all unknown unknowns (not just Taleb’s famous black swans) for lunch. I have heard at least three different versions of this proposition in the last year. The narrative inspires social system designs that feed on uncertainty rather than being destroyed by it. Geoffrey West’s ideas about superlinearity are the empirical part of an attempt to construct an existence proof showing that such systems are actually possible." Annotated link
uncertainty  risk  trends  history  technology  innovation  narrative  terrorism 
april 2012 by tsuomela
Structure Strangeness: What is the probability of a 9/11-size terrorist attack?
Sunday is the 10-year anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. As a commemoration of the day, I'm going to investigate answers to a very simple question: what is the probability of a 9/11-size or larger terrorist attack?
terrorism  probability  complexity  prediction  model  social 
september 2011 by tsuomela
Codename: Geronimo | Savage Minds
"A little excess social capital couldn’t have come at a more opportune time. Playing Indian is a dynamic practice, changing with time as American anxieties change from one generation to the next. Giving Bin Laden the code name “Geronimo” rises out of the need to address the ambivalence Americans have over the value of the current war. By imbuing it with Indians the war is legitimated but it is also made comprehensible. The current war is made legible in terms of previous wars. In fact, the ideology of American/ Indian martial conflict and the contradictory imagery of Indians as Us and Not-Us plays itself out, over and over again, in every American military conflict. This is part of American culture and shows how we make war make sense."
war  terrorism  metaphor  identity  native-american  sensemaking 
may 2011 by tsuomela
The Deadliest Rhetoric - Reason Magazine
"Official government violence against nonviolent Americans and residents, by contrast, occurs daily. And for the last 30 years it has been increasing at an alarming rate. From the early 1980s to the mid-2000s, University of Eastern Kentucky criminologist Peter Kraska conducted an annual survey on the use of SWAT teams in the United States. Until the late 1970s, SWAT teams were generally used in emergency situations to defuse conflicts with people who presented an immediate threat to others, such as hostage takers, bank robbers, or mass shooters. But beginning in the early 1980s, police departments across the country began using SWAT teams to serve drug warrants.

Kraska found that the number of SWAT deployments in America increased from 3,000 per year in the early 1980s to around 50,000 by the mid-2000s. That’s about 135 SWAT raids per day. The vast majority of those are for drug warrants."
crime  police  terrorism  drugs  war  metaphor  politics  rhetoric  militarism  military-industrial-complex  weapons 
march 2011 by tsuomela
A Bit More on Liberalism and Detention, or: What If Private Manning Confesses? « Rortybomb
"This isn’t the conservative response. I think there’s a sense that conservatives are like liberals here but want a slightly more tilted playing field, one more in favor of prosecutors and against suspects. There’s that element to it, but for conservatives the point of coercive power isn’t to establish fair procedures to hold it in check but instead to maintain order."
liberal  liberalism  conservatism  proceduralism  law  enforcement  freedom  terrorism  police 
march 2011 by tsuomela
The Shadow War - Series - The New York Times
"Articles in this series examine the secret expansion of the war against Al Qaeda and its allies."
war  terrorism  secrecy  foreign-policy  america 
january 2011 by tsuomela
Separating Terror from Terrorism | STRATFOR
"These theatrical attacks have a strange hold over the human imagination and can create a unique sense of terror that dwarfs the normal reaction to natural disasters that are many times greater in magnitude. For example, in the 2004 Asian tsunami, more than 227,000 people died, while fewer than 3,000 people died on 9/11. Yet the 9/11 attacks produced not only a sense of terror but also a geopolitical reaction that has exerted a profound and unparalleled impact upon world events over the past decade. Terrorism clearly can have a powerful impact on the human psyche — so much so that even the threat of a potential attack can cause fear and apprehension, as seen by the reaction to the recent spate of warnings about attacks occurring over the holidays."
terror  terrorism  fear  media  political-science  psychology  security 
january 2011 by tsuomela
The OPR report: this era's 'Hiroshima' - Politics - The Atlantic
If you want to argue that "whatever" happened in the "war on terror" was necessary because of the magnitude and novelty of the threat, then you had better be willing to face what the "whatever" entailed. Which is what this report brings out. And if you believe -- as I do, and have argued through the years -- that what happened included excessive, abusive, lawless, immoral, and self-defeating acts done wrongly in the name of American "security," then this is a basic text as well.
law  terrorism  torture  america  foreign-policy 
march 2010 by tsuomela
Dennis Perrin: New Century Smell
Perrin segues from terrorism and revenge to a comment on living life as a cleaner. Links to other essays on life as a cleaner.
essay  2000s  rant  politics  terrorism  labor  work  class 
december 2009 by tsuomela
Think Again: International Law | Foreign Policy
During his presidential campaign, Obama expressed support for the International Criminal Court and humanitarian intervention. In office, he has done nothing for the ICC and has stood by while the killing continues in Sudan. He has promised to close the detention facility at Guantánamo Bay; the problem, however, was not that the facility itself violated international law but that the detention methods practiced there (arguably) did so. These very same detention practices have continued in Iraq and Afghanistan.
about(BarackObama)  international  law  politics  terrorism  war  president 
september 2009 by tsuomela
An Interview with Col. Lawrence Wilkerson, Part 1 by Andy Worthington
Specifically, Col. Wilkerson wrote about “the utter incompetence of the battlefield vetting in Afghanistan during the early stages of the U.S. operations there” and how “several in the U.S. leadership became aware of this lack of proper vetting very early on and, thus, of the reality that many of the detainees were innocent of any substantial wrongdoing, had little intelligence value, and should be immediately released.” He also poured scorn on “the ad hoc intelligence philosophy that was developed to justify keeping many of these people, called the mosaic philosophy,”
interview  foreign-policy  politics  country(Afghanistan)  terrorism 
september 2009 by tsuomela
The Secret Government - The Nation
by Christopher Hayes. On the Church committee and CIA investigations.
terrorism  torture  government  about(GeorgeBush)  cia  history  spying 
august 2009 by tsuomela
Fringe leftist losers: wrong even when they're right - Glenn Greenwald -
Comment on Tom Ridge, former head of the Dept of Homeland Security, admitting that the terrorist threat level was altered for political gain during the Bush administration. Also asks questions about media complicity with government.
politics  journalism  media  terrorism  media-reform  consensus  narrative  oversight  about(GeorgeBush) 
august 2009 by tsuomela
Overdue Process | The American Prospect
When it comes to terrorist suspects in detention, Obama is finding that Bush set a difficult precedent to break.
law  terrorism  international  war  about(BarackObama) 
august 2009 by tsuomela
Critic Questions Afghan Policy Goals : NPR
Supporters of the war in Afghanistan says it is essential the U.S. creates stability in that country to prevent another 9/11-style attack. Andrew Bacevich doesn't agree. The former U.S. Army colonel, now a professor at Boston University, says there is a better way: erect and maintain robust defenses.
country(Afghanistan)  military  international  politics  strategy  foreign-policy  terrorism  national-security  goals 
august 2009 by tsuomela
America's Tough Love Habit | Mother Jones
For decades, Americans have tolerated "tough love" treatment not just for terrorists, but for vulnerable youth.
torture  punishment  children  teenager  youth  terrorism  america 
may 2009 by tsuomela
Changing Jihadist Behavior (Journal (Magazine))
One program that has in fact focused on actually trying to change individual behaviors and attitudes of terrorist group members and supporters has been that conducted by Saudi Arabia over the last several years. Since the Saudi program is one of the few organized efforts to change terrorist attitudes at the grass root level, it is worth examining for its operations and results thus far.
terrorism  psychology  behavior  intelligence 
april 2009 by tsuomela
Detainee's Harsh Treatment Foiled No Plots -
More proof that this entire decade was a disaster - both at home with the economy and abroad with torture.
torture  american  foreign-policy  terrorism  gwot  failure  about(GeorgeBush) 
march 2009 by tsuomela
Internet Archive: Details: The Power of Nightmares
This film explores the origins in the 1940s and 50s of Islamic Fundamentalism in the Middle East, and Neoconservatism in America, parallels between these movements, and their effect on the world today. From the introduction to Part 1:

"Both [the Islamists and Neoconservatives] were idealists who were born out of the failure of the liberal dream to build a better world. And both had a very similar explanation for what caused that failure. These two groups have changed the world, but not in the way that either intended. Together, they created today's nightmare vision of a secret, organized evil that threatens the world. A fantasy that politicians then found restored their power and authority in a disillusioned age. And those with the darkest fears became the most powerful. "
documentary  politics  media  terrorism  film  by(AdamCurtis)  psychology  philosophy  ideology  neoconservatism  fundamentalism 
march 2009 by tsuomela
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