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Speaker to discuss terrorism

Since the fateful 9/11 attacks in New York City already 10 years ago, terrorism has been put under a magnifying glass like never before. Even the general public began to discuss and analyze it as a policy issue. Although terrorism certainly existed before Sept. 11, one cannot deny the fact that it has been a more dominating issue in the most recent decade. Now, Drake students will have the opportunity to hear an expert on the topic talk about the past, present and future of terrorism in our world.  Today at 7 p.m., Brian Fishman will deliver a lecture in Bulldog Theater aptly titled, “Combating Terrorism: Lessons Learned.”

The speech is part of the Fall 2011 Speaker and Film Series presented by the Principal Financial Group Center for Global Citizenship.

Fishman brings an intelligent and thoughtful perspective to the topic of terrorism. He is a Counterterrorism Research Fellow at the New America Foundation, a nonpartisan public policy institute that investigates the new challenges that future American generations will face. In addition, he is a Research Fellow with the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point as well as an accomplished author.

Fishman is certain his lecture will resonate with students as many of us grew up during the events of Sept. 11th and in the new age of global terrorism.

“The danger from al-Qaeda illustrates that terrorism is an evolving but persistent threat that today’s college students will have to deal with in one form or another throughout their lives,” Fishman said.

However, although the threat will not be going away anytime soon, Fishman said he believes that students “understand these problems more intuitively in some ways than older folks” and that “young people are particularly well prepared to understand” how technology will facilitate the evolvement of terrorism and resistance to it.

David Skidmore, professor of politics and international relations and the director of the Center for Global Citizenship, said he is excited for the opportunity to host such a qualified speaker here at Drake. He said Fishman’s lecture will help students better understand the modern problems of terrorism and how the issue can be better dealt with.

“As recent events remind us, the United States very much remains in a state of conflict with groups that employ terrorist means,” Skidmore said. “Brian Fishman’s talk will help us distill what lessons can be learned about how best to deal with terrorist threats and which responses may be ineffective or counter-productive.”

Like all Monday night lectures in the series, Fishman’s presentation is not only open to Drake students; it is open to the community, too.

“The Monday night lectures coincide with the class meeting time for American Foreign Policy, taught by Professor Ellen Pirro,” Skidmore said. “The students in the course attend the talks as part of their class requirements, but members of the campus and Des Moines communities are also invited to attend.”


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