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What's your terrorism risk?

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wtmusic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 07:17 PM
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What's your terrorism risk?
Some fun facts from Bruce Schneier's new book, Beyond Fear: Thinking Sensibly About Security in an Uncertain World (Copernicus Books):

"The number of people in the US who die from being attacked by pigs is greater than the number who die from shark attacks."

"Unless you live in a coastal metropolis you are more likely to die from a bee sting than a terrorist attack."

"The number of automobile deaths in the US is equivalent to a fully loaded 727 crashing every day and a half."

"You are more likely to die in an accident on the way to buy duct tape than be saved by the tape in a terrorist incident."

"Long-term countermeasures, such as deterrence and education are the only real solution, and even they are imperfect. The best way to reduce terrorism is to solve the underlying socioeconomic and geopolitical problems that cause it to arise in the first place. This isn't absolute, but nothing in security is ever absolute..."

"Many of the laws passed in the U.S. to help fight terrorism, most notably the USA PATRIOT Act, give the government broader powers of surveillance and spying...this is fine if we assume that the government is completely benevolent and that these powers will be used only for good, but history has taught us again and again that power is a corrupting influence. The problem with giving powers like this to the state is that they are far more likely to be used for the benefit of those in power than to protect citizens, and the reason the U.S. Constitution and the court system have put limits on police power is that these limits make all citizens more secure."

"As Benjamin Franklin said in 1784: 'They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.'"

Schneier is arguably the world's leading security expert and has evaluated hundreds of security systems, worked on security for the DOD, and written the bible on modern cryptogrphic techniques, Applied Cryptography.

Not offering a wholesale endorsement of this book--much of it is hard to read but the chapter on terrorism is excellent and he offers a practical 5-step system to evaluate your own security needs.
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Brucey Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 07:19 PM
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1. This stuff is amazing, thanks
so much for thoughtful info.
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burrowowl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 07:22 PM
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2. Infinitely less
than a stray bullet from gangs or the regular cowboy bunch here in this area.
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soleft Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 07:27 PM
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3. I live in a coastal metropolis
:scared:
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wtmusic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 07:32 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. Then you're in trouble...
and don't forget the bees!
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 07:44 PM
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5. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
HawkerHurricane Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 07:57 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. And how many Saudi Billionaires flew planes into buildings?
Sure, the Saudi's fund the terrorists. Or bribe them to stay away from them, more likely. But the people killing themselves to kill others are not billionaires, they are desperate people who think dying to help thier cause is better than living the way they do.

If the poor have no hope, they go find some. Through terrorism, religion, drugs or revolution.
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GiovanniC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 07:58 PM
Response to Reply #5
7. underlying SOCIOECONOMIC and GEOPOLITICAL problems
Terrorism isn't caused entirely by being poor, so your 12th-graders would be attacking a premise that was never advanced.

However, the GEOPOLITICAL problems that the Middle East (the region which, let's face it, produces the most terrorists) are unique to the Middle East. So while Bolivia, for example, may have an extremely high rate of poverty, they don't have the uniquely Middle Eastern geopolitical problems (such as the I/P mess, the belief -- founded or unfounded -- that they live on land that is extremely sacred to their religion, US occupation of holy lands, painful economic sanctions, etc) that can incubate terrorists and help them thrive.

Removal of some of these socioeconomic and geopolitical problems WOULD help prevent terrorism and help prevent future terrorists from sprouting up. The problem with this, of course, is that it's much easier said than done. The region in question has been a powderkeg since the beginning of recorded history and isn't likely to change much anytime soon.

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wtmusic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Sep-14-03 08:39 PM
Response to Reply #5
8. Wow, you solved it
'a power struggle between the tenth century and the twenty-first'. You mean tenth century fundamentalists vs. twenty-first century fundamentalists?
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