Nov/Dec Contents | Gazette
did the terrorists do it? What will happen next? How will the events of
September 11 continue to resonate throughout our societyfrom the economic
impacts to the buildings we build, the arts we create, the lives we try
to live? In the weeks following the attacks on New York and Washington,
we turned to Penns faculty for their thoughts.
You Want Security, Theres a Tradeoff
If you read
what Osama bin Laden has been saying for years and certainly in the fatwa
he issued in 1998, he was issuing a call for a jihad, a religious
struggle, and he was calling upon not Arabic or Islamic nations
to band with him, but individuals.
edict was a call to hit Americans and American financial holdings wherever
they existed. Previously we had thought because of the bombings in East
Africa and the actions on the USS Cole and other incidents that there
really wasnt going to be the prospect of a major event in the U.S. Now
we know differently.
do think there are going to be additional attacks. If you had his objectives,
would you stop at this one event? He wants us out of Saudi Arabia and
out of Jerusalem. Its not about the U.S., but about the U.S. role in
leadership as the head Crusader. In other words, we havent given [Islam]
enough of a proper recognition, and we dont respect its traditions and
culture. We have troops there. Some of them are women troops. Some of
the women go swimming.
far as the kind of attack, you can dream up anything you want. I have
enough expertise and Im paranoid enough that I could come up with some
beauts. Id say the primary objective might be to cause enough random
fear in the U.S. to make people change their way of life significantly.
And second, to cut off the East coast so the government leadership, communications,
and transportation networks are tenuous at best. All of the commercial
sector and governmental sector rely on resources from the East Coast.
Ninety percent of the pharmaceutical stuff in the U.S. comes from the
East Coast. If you destroy our capability of replenishing our health-care
supplies, what have you done? Youve done some pretty nasty things.
attack on September 11 was not a technically difficult action. It was
disastrous, but it wasnt technically difficult. Most of the information
could be obtained off the Internet. You dont need much pilot training
if youre not anxious to take off and land.
have to ask not just what will damage the U.S., but where can they get
the best bang for their buck. Thats really the way that terrorism operates.
far as the threat of biochemical attack, my hope is that even in their
lust for change in the world they behave a little more sanely than we
have any right to expect right now, and that we will not face that kind
of attack. You have to hope they will realize, By God, well kill ourselves
too. Its uncontrollable.
country has enjoyed a wonderful time of experimentation where everything
was relatively open. If you want security, theres a tradeoff. Im not
advocating it. Im just saying that if you want security youve got to
be willing to do other things. Would you be willing to see an event such
as September 11 once every year? Youd be screaming for some sort of protection,
America is pretty resilient and I have great confidence in the American
public. American citizens will run into a building and save someone. Thats
really what its going to come down to, a lot of individual actions and
expert Dr. Stephen Gale is associate professor of regional science and
director of the Organizational Dynamics Program.
Biggest Single Deficit in
Our Negotiation Toolbox Is Knowledge
When it comes
to coalition-building, this is about the most complicated negotiation
picture anyone could try to construct. To be successful its going to
require not just perseverance and clarity, but probably a good deal of
luck and timing.
The team President
Bush has in place is about as experienced as anyone could ask for, so
if anyone is going to be able to pull this off, its going to be this
group of men and women who have been through similar experiences and have
relationships here and in other countries with important political figures
they can draw on.
biggest single deficit in our negotiation toolbox at the moment is knowledge,
not just cognitive knowledge, but emotional knowledge and empathy for
the problems of Islamic countries and the mindset of Islamic leaders.
The danger as you go into these negotiations is youll see just enough
of the other sides interests to close a deal today, but not enough to
make a stable deal for tomorrow. We allied with Pakistan when the Russians
attacked Afghanistan, but as soon as the Russians disappeared, we disappeared,
leaving a lot of people who supported the U.S. and who were hopeful for
democracy high and dryand we lost a lot of potential friends by the way
Finally, we need
to take the time it requires to negotiate these issues on a person-to-person
level. Most of the rest of the world except the United States and northern
Europe are relationship cultures when it comes to negotiations. They believe
in long-term trust and experience as the basis for negotiations. We tend
to be much more transactional and look to immediate problems and interests.
Its going to be important to have specific individuals who can trust
specific individuals over a fairly long period of time to stabilize this
and understand what our coalition partners needs are as we advance our
Dr. G. Richard
Shell is the Thomas Gerrity Professor of legal studies and management
and author of Bargaining for Advantage.
U.S. Should Mount a Global Marshall Plan
attacks on September 11 were massive crimes against humanity. For this
reason they should be condemned by all human beings; and the perpetrators
should be brought to justice, preferably in the International Criminal
Court, which will soon come into force upon being ratified by 60 countries.
there are many who rejoice at such a catastrophe points to a profoundly
disturbing question of how deep are the roots of terrorism. A military
response to apprehend Osama bin Laden and his world-wide network is, to
be sure, necessary, but it is not sufficient. Supporting his network are
impoverished, alienated, and enraged masses of people in the Middle East,
Latin America, Africa, and Asia. Suffering hunger and poverty, these masses
resent the burdens imposed by their totalitarian rulers. The United States,
unfortunately, has often been perceived as propping up oppressive totalitarian
counter this widespread perception, and to begin to eradicate the roots
of terrorism, the U.S. should mount a global Marshall Plan. Diverting
$20 billion from the annual defense budget of approximately $360 billion,
for perhaps 10 to 20 years, for this purpose might make a dent in eradicating
the roots of terrorism. The Marshall Plan and its equivalent for Japan
(the Dodge Plan) not only revived the devastated economies of Europe and
Japan after World War II but enabled them to advance to a position among
the most productive economies in the world. If the U.S. were to initiate
a Global Marshall Plan to eradicate terrorism, the European Union and
Japan would undoubtedly join in such a noble endeavor.
M. Evan is emeritus professor of sociology and management.
Approach to the Middle East and Muslim World
If we do not
transform American policy in and toward the Middle East, we will be unable
to mobilize the governments, armies, and police forces of the area to
assist us in destroying the machine of terror. And even if we do destroy
this one, we will in the process create conditions leading to the appearance
of another, and perhaps improved, model.
To achieve the
destruction of the terror machine and to prevent its reconstruction we
must convince Afghans, Pakistanis, and most Muslim Middle Easterners that
we are not their enemy; that we are prepared to live with governments
produced by democratic elections, even if they are Islamic governments;
and that we will use the full resources of our country to achieve a rapid,
comprehensive, and just peace between Israel and the Palestinians. In
other words, we need a fundamentally new approach to the Middle East and
the Muslim world in general.
Without a comprehensive
economic and political program of social reconstruction for wherever it
is that we fight, and without American enforcement of a just and lasting
solution to the Israeli-Palestinian dispute, we are doomed to suffer a
fate similar to that we helped inflict on the Soviet Union in the 1980s.
The great significance
of this issue lies in the way that a steady diet of images of Israeli
oppression of Palestinians and American collusion in that oppression creates
conditions among the masses that assure the terrorists of sympathy and
support. No matter how barbaric the terrorists actions, when they occur
against a backdrop of perceived U.S. partnership with Israel in the annexation
of Jerusalem, the killing of Palestinians, and the suppression of Palestinian
nationalism, they will, at some level, produce sentiments of satisfaction
that redound to the political benefit of the terrorists.
As the greatest
generation fought the heroic fight in Europe and Japan against fascism,
so President Bush suggests this generation must now go forth to do the
same in the Middle East. But we must remember that our victory over fascism
was followed and consolidated by a massive program of aid in the reconstruction
of European democracy and the foundation of Japanese democracy. Without
that great political, moral, and economic effort, Soviet-backed communist
regimes might well have supplanted democracy in many more European countries
and in Japan. Our soldiers, and our murdered citizens in New York, Washington,
and that field in Pennsylvania will have died in vain if we do not match
the victory of our arms in Afghanistan or Iraq with the same kind of resources,
political support, and respect for our Muslim allies and their deeply
held beliefs that we showed not only to our allies in post-war Europe,
but toward our former enemies as well.
Lustick is the Merriam Term Professor of Political Science and associate
director of the Solomon Asch Center for Study of Ethnopolitical Conflict.
U.S. Faces a Problem of Rising Anti-Americanism
Throughout the World
of the president of the United Statesthat the United States is at war,
and that were going to wage a war against global terrorismmakes me uneasy.
What do we mean by global terrorism? And are we really prepared to fight
against all perpetrators of terrorism everywhere, and against those who
harbor them? I would have been much more comfortable had the president
and the U.S. Congress formally declared war on Afghanistan. I think it
would have been simpler to digest for much of the world, including a good
part of the Muslim world. But we are at war, and that will have meaning
for how far we are prepared to go in terms of dealing with the opponent
and also protecting ourselves.
think that the Middle East understands power. Americas power has so far
been primarily latent. The argument that Afghanistan is a poor country
and that the Taliban have very few advanced weapons misses the point.
The Taliban can be defeated. They not only can be defeated, they can be
crippled, and maybe even destroyed.
what happens after that should not be an American problem but a UN problem
or a regional problem. Its evident by the events of the last 10 years
that we are not capable of nation-building. Were too arrogant. What we
would like to do is too much a reflection of our own society, and it is
not what other cultures are prepared to absorb.
United States faces a problem of rising anti-Americanism throughout the
world. The decade of the nineties was the decade of the halcyon days of
American power, prestige, and capability. America bought into the notion
that globalization will bring democracy; trade will bring with it a sharing
of prosperity; human rights will come along in the wake and build civil
societies. The notion that we are no longer in the era of war; America
has won; the world is going to be liberal and democraticits all wrong.
Thats only part of the world.
United States is the worlds revolutionary country. Revolutionary in the
sense of overturning institutions and traditions and practices and beliefs.
America is viewed as a godless society, as a corrupt society, as a materialistic
society. A country without values.
Laden came from a family that had all advantages of education, training,
attitudebut he didnt embrace the kind of thing that we are pushing.
as we begin to look ahead to what our security is and to what our interests
are, we have to think more clearly; we have to understand that the world
is not going to be remade in our image; and that other parts of world
will have to managewith help but on their ownto develop their own kinds
Z. Rubinstein is a professor of political science and a senior fellow
at the Foreign Policy Research Institute.
Criminals Morality, And You May Reduce Crime
11, I was in Leicester, England, on day two of launching a national field
experiment for the British Government. The new idea to be tested was that
reconciliation might work better than retribution in trying to prevent
As I watched
the WTC towers collapse, I began to see the broader implications of our
experiments in restorative justice. For thousands of years, local communities
have tried to prevent endless cycles of violence by repairing the harm
caused by violent crime. Reparation agreements were the basis of English
law until the Norman Conquest. Modern England will go back to the future
with us in testing meetings between victims and offenders with their respective
friends and families. These efforts to find voluntary ways to restore
crime victims are designed to reduce repeat offending, as well as victim
The theory draws
on research showing that many criminals believe they are acting morally.
Change their morality, and you may reduce crime. Our Australian experiment
with restorative justice reduced repeat crime by 38 percent in a randomized
controlled trial, one of the strongest tests in science.
found increasing evidence that strong moral beliefs may cause as
much crime as weak moral beliefs. Yet my field has done little
to apply these findings to the moral beliefs of terrorists. When 20 people
are willing to commit suicide to attack our evil country, the rational-choice
explanation of crime must be carefully reassessed.
beliefs flourish in periods of great awakenings of religious belief,
such as the one that led to Penns founding in 1740. Other great awakenings
have led to the abolition of slavery, to womens suffrage, and to social
security. On a much smaller scale, restorative justice tries to cause
personal moral awakenings in the lives of criminals. It is hard to find
changes in peoples morality that have been caused by brute force alone.
Whether terrorism could be stopped by great or personal moral awakenings
against fundamentalist violence is an option that few have explored.
Sherman is the Albert M. Greenfield Professor of Human Relations, director
of the Jerry Lee Center for Criminology, and director of the Fels Center
and the Middle East
Degradation of Women Happens in
Every Religion, To Our Shame
that Muslim leaders need to be more outspoken in denouncing terrorism
is somewhat disingenuous. There have been striking denunciations of the
attacks from Muslim leaders, both in the U.S. and abroad. The demand for
more seems to constantly move the horizon. Fortunately, President Bush
has acknowledged these denunciations and has made efforts to include Muslims
in discussions and in the international response. Less fortunately, Bush
also made a significant misstep in using the word crusade. This
has, in the Muslim world, connotations like those we attach to jihad,
which is actually a broad term more accurately translated as struggle.
too often associate Islamespecially the practice of veilingwith the
degradation of women. The degradation of women happens in every religion,
to our shame. We fail to recognize that even fundamentalist Islam includes
well-known women leaders like Zeinab al-Ghazali of the Muslim Brothers
in Egypt and that many women veil by choice as they do here in the United
States. In this they resemble members of certain Christian denominations
and Orthodox Jewish women who adopt clothing they believe to be more modest.
Taliban is a very local phenomenon, not a movement found throughout the
Muslim world. The Taliban would characterize themselves as strict followers
of Islam, but they are regarded as provincial and inadequately educated
by most Muslim authorities.
Norton is a professor of political science whose research interests include
race and gender and colonialism and post-colonialism.
Is a Way of Organizing This World,
As Well As Preparing for the Next
insofar as they are successful, are an inspiration to people in neighboring
countries desperate enough to want to fight against perceived deprivation
and discrimination, especially in Pakistan, Kashmir, and Tajikistan, which
have the same historical traditions. The current Afghan borders date only
from the 1870s.
Islam is a very
different sort of phenomenon than Christianity, which makes it difficult
for most of us to understand whats going on. Islam is a way of organizing
this world as well as preparing for the next. It began to serve as a banner
for political revolt against alien domination a long time ago. In Arabia,
against the Ottomans in the 18th century. In India, against the British
in the 19th century. The Taliban trace their thinking back to these movements.
In any Islamic population there is fertile ground for this sort of thinking.
for Israel against the Palestinians is a real grievance, as is the presence
of American military forces in Saudi Arabia, the country that contains
the main Islamic religious sites. [Many Muslims view the U.S. as the enemy
of Islam] because America supports (a) Israel, and (b) corrupt, unrepresentative,
undemocratic regimes in Islamic countries. [To counter fundamentalist
hatred for the U.S. and the West, the U.S. should] stop supporting unrepresentative
regimes and making it difficult for the local people to change them.
Spooner is a professor of anthropology and Curator for Near Eastern Ethnology
in the University Museum. His work focuses on the Islamic countries of
West, South, and Central Asia.
Seems to Come in the Package of Globalization
Islam is a religion
of law and how to live ones life in a way that is pleasing to God. There
is nothing in the sacred traditions of Islam that promotes terrorism or
any violent means toward achieving a violent end. The Koran only sanctions
killing people in a defensive posture, during war, or when someone is
guilty of a capital crime. But no religion has been completely free of
violence. There have been strange and violent uprisings in the name of
religion all over the worldthe Tamil separatist movement in Sri Lanka,
the conflicts in northern Ireland, to name a few. And the early European
colonists and latter settlers in America, in the name of Christianity,
exterminated many native Americans.
think any sacred scripture is, by its very nature, open to interpretation.
But Muslims will give 10 different interpretations of a single passage
in the Koran. Its one of the beauties and also one of the problems of
the religion. Theres no clerical structure that dictates correct beliefs,
so there is the possibility for this grassroots reading of the scripture
where you are encouraged to make your own interpretation. When a rogue
person like bin Laden makes his interpretation, thats a disadvantage.
And theres no central authority to say, Youre excommunicated.
think bin Laden does feel like a soldier for Islam. He frequently mouths
words like Thanks God, but he doesnt have any spiritual depth. Theres
the feeling that there is this great secret that only he and his followers
are in on ñ that they are committing these actions for some sort of cosmic
reason. This is obviously the use of religion for his own geopolitical
ends, and its the most acute example of the misuse of religion for a
very angry political stance.
each of the Muslim countries in the Middle East, there is such a wide
range of stances vis-a-vis America, modernity, the womens movement
impossible to make it a monolith. If it were possible for Muslims to unite,
it would have happened already. There are 1.2 billion Muslims in the world,
and Islam is the second largest religion. They share some basic beliefs,
but it ends there. However, this conflict threatens to unite them in a
way that nothing else has.
Muslim country is against modernism. Theyre all for things like better
medicine, technology, and better education And almost everyone but the
Taliban is for womens rights. The problem is that modernization seems
to come in the package of globalization, which means Americanization and
the invasion of the western way of life. So its viewed more as a cultural
are used to nature programs and informative shows, what we would think
of as PBS-style programming. We talk about family values, and we have
violence and borderline-pornographic images on TV, violence against women,
astronomical rates of women raising children on their own, and high crime
rates. These are things that Muslims have never seen. If that is their
overall impression of our society, then its easy for them to demonize
our society as extremely corrupt.
von Schlegell is an assistant professor of religious studies with a secondary
appointment in history, specializing in Islamic religion and history.
Is As Representative of the Middle East
As Baywatch Is of America
Since the collapse
of the Ottoman Empire, most of these predominantly Islamic countries have
been on the defensive. There were many promises made to Arab leaders that
were not fully kept. At the end of World War I, many of these countries
got a taste of quasi-independence under the auspices of the western world.
With little political
tradition of power sharing, open political dialogue, or checks and balances
on power in the region, individuals will take power into their own hands.
There is a great deal of authoritarianism, oppression and lawlessness.
The most important thing these people need is law. Since the 19th century,
Islamic modernists have been advocating a more effective, representative
The Middle East
has a love-hate relationship with America. Its convenient to make America
a scapegoat because America is thriving. Look at the refugee crisis in
Afghanistan. Many in the Middle East aspire to America. American pop culture
is alive and well there. But in terms of politics, there is the popular
perception that America is a bully, and they want to crush the American
Islam has become
a culprit [in the terrorist activities] because political fanatics have
used Islam as a way of garnering greater support for their causes. Islamic
text, like any text, can be misinterpreted to further a political cause
and win over more followers. For example, the whole concept of suicide
is against Islam. Yet some very conservative scholars have argued that
these suicide bombings are not technically suicides, but martyrdom. The
terrorists are using what they can to further their lust for power. You
have people who will use whatever means they can in order to gain power
and put into place a vision of society that is contrary to our American
views of freedom and civil liberties as well as to Islams fundamental
teachings about respecting the value of human life.
There are basic
beliefs that all Muslims uphold, like the five pillars of faith. But within
Islam, there are many sects and offshoots of sects. Islamic fundamentalists
are on the outer fringes. They are in no way embraced by any Islamic orthodoxy.
Its easy for conservative religious factions to appeal to certain groups
suffering from socioeconomic oppression. Many view [these radical ideologies]
as a last resort to win back the war, to enfranchise themselves. It
fills a void in their lives and gives them the hope for a better future.
Islamic fundamentalism is no different from other ideologies in that respect.
But this is a unique opportunity for other Muslims to take a stand against
Islamic radicals and say, We will not give in to these fringe groups.
Terror has existed
at many different points in history and in many different societies. There
have been political assassinations and killings to further various ideologies,
so it definitely is not fair to single out the Middle East as the area
to which terrorism is more endemic than other areas. Terrorism is as representative
of the Middle East as Baywatch is of America.
Kashani-Sabet is assistant professor of history. Her research deals with
the modern Middle East, the Ottoman Empire, and Iran.
U.S. After the Attacks
the Event As We Did Was Therapeutic
In times of
crisis, the media are there to comfort, to console and to provide us with
a collective frame of reference, a sense of community. Weve known for
a long time, at least since the Kennedy assassination, that what we do
in times of crisis is we collect around our television screen. It offers
us not only a meeting place, but also a kind of shared frame of reference.
The visuals we get help us deal with an event and help to offset our feelings
of helplessness, give us a sense of control, bring us together with significant
others and keep us informed.
think that viewing the event as we did was therapeutic. It was important
to be able to see the planes hitting the towers, to see the destruction,
at least for that first stage of the event. Because what television helps
us do is move from the chaos of the first few minutes or first day-or-so
to a place of resolve, and then to a place of resolution to grieve and
then put this behind us.
that first day, we looked to newspapers, which offered us the ability
to view the still images, pausing and reflecting on them, even saving
them. We have a different relationship with newspaper and magazine images
than with television images. Certain images are easier to take when they
move on, and other images can be better understood when they appear as
still photos. All of the media come together to give us a more comprehensive
encounter with the event.
have to make a distinction between the events and the images of the events,
because you cant get caught in blaming the messenger. The visuals werent
horrible. What was horrible was the event. [And] there was a definitive
sense of limitations in what we werent shown. The images of the people
jumping out of the building were yanked off the air in the first hour,
I believe. We were not shown bodies, even though we know people were hit
by body parts.
is a certain therapy involved in the repetition of these images [such
as the second airplane crashing into the Tower] as we move through our
acceptance of whats going on. For many of us, seeing is believing. Also,
not everyone disengages at the same time. Its almost like its televisions
obligation to keep that setting going for as long as people need it to
be there. And people started turning it off at different times. Some people
had had enough after one day. Some people kept watching television obsessively
for three or four days.
think that the media did an exemplary job in covering what was a complicated
and unprecedented event.
Zelizer is the Raymond Williams Associate Professor of Communications
and author of Remembering to Forget: Holocaust Memory Through the
Televised Tutorial by the Government
The media have
been a mobilizing force by concentrating collective public attention on
a particular fact of American life in a particularly riveting way that
weve never seen before. About 80 million Americans viewed the attack
coverage in prime time that night on the major networks. Through television,
the government was able to shape public opinion about the event and help
people respond to what had happened.
In some sense,
the public was a blank slate during this event. Historically, the American
media have brought an abysmal lack of attention to the international arena.
So our nation is so ignorant in terms of the goings-on in other countries.
People had to get up-to-speed about countries like Afghanistan, Pakistan,
As a result, the government had the ability to impress upon
people a new understanding, to mold public opinion in ways they wouldnt
have been able to with domestic issues. Except for their disdain of terrorism,
people have had very little opinion about foreign affairs. It was, in
a sense, a televised tutorial by the government.
Its a little
disingenuous to say [the major networks] were objective [in their coverage].
Theres no such thing as news objectivity. Take, for instance, the titles
of the programs. We see a branding mechanism that cued us about how we
should view the events: Attack on America, America at War,
America Recovers. In the beginning, the titles were incredibly
similar across networks, but then they started to change. These titles
were all attempts to package the story and structure our sense of what
The media try
to be dispassionate, but they are part of the establishment. To say that
any established media should stay on the outside of society is an extremely
tall order. [Reporters who revealed on-air emotions] is not a new phenomenon.
Walter Cronkite cried when he announced that Kennedy died. I have the
feeling that MSNBC and other networks are encouraging reporters to be
a little more out there in terms of their feelings. Theres a whole
history of the American news that emphasizes straight fact-telling. But
its useful to know what the biases are rather than pretend they dont
exist. You can then take these stances into consideration to evaluate
what reporters are saying.
Turow is the Robert Lewis Shayon Professor of Communications, specializing
in media industries and social influences of the media.
Long Run Remains As Bright As Its Been
One thing weve
always known is that the market hates uncertainty. Certainly the level
of uncertainty in our economy and in our lives has increased markedly
since the September 11 attacks, and it had a predictably depressing effect
on the markets. Its hard to see the market recovering rapidly without
some relief of that uncertainty in terms of political and military and
economic impact is certainly devastating in the short run. It was coming
at a very bad time. The economy was already slipping into a recession.
The long run, I believe, remains as bright as its been. We will have
a shift, obviously, toward more security and more defense, and there will
be industries that will thrive from the shift in the pattern of expenditures.
travel and tourism will be hurt for a while until Americans can feel more
secure. What concerns me is international trade and integration and the
globalization of the world economy. If that progress is significantly
hampered for long periods of time, that will have a negative effect on
growth around the world. We had a situation where not only the U.S. economy,
but the Japanese and European economies, were also very weak before these
good news is the Federal Reserve is providing a lot of liquidity. But
it will be very hard for these lower rates to increase spending by as
much as how spending is going to be curtailed in the short run due to
economic uncertainty. Clearly were going to have a rising unemployment
rate and we will have to measure that impact on consumer confidence.
would seem to me that without some favorable developments in the war against
terrorism it would be hard for the market to make much progress over the
next six-to-nine months. In the second half of next year, we hopefully
will see some improvements. If youre a long-term investor, this is not
necessarily a bad development. Youll be able to pick up shares at prices
which in the future will probably enhance your wealth even more. Clearly
if youre a short-term investor there are a lot of risks out there.
can swing prices far more than the economic justification. So, I could
make a very good case that could be correct for the market not falling
much as a result of this, but if people get very discouraged or fearful,
the market could fall much more.
Siegel is a professor of finance and author of Stocks for the Long
Certify that You Are You
face recognition, fingerprint recognition, and retinal recognition to
certify that you are you. Youre going to see that develop over the next
few years. I could see an airline developing a card for its frequent flyers
[to go through special] security lines.
Or to use an
e-ticket, youll need a positive ID. That whole field will probably blossom.
And youre going to see a lot of software thats used to detect trends,
where it takes a database and tries to predict bad actors. The airlines
already do a bit of that now, identifying people who should be looked
at a little more carefully. That will spread across the board.
Im not saying
I like any of these things, but thats probably what will happen.
I think the performance
of the Net during the crisis will drive a lot of people to expect to get
their news and really current stuff on the Internet as opposed to TV.
On September 11 people turned to the Net both for communication with relatives,
if they couldnt phone them, and news. I think that will become more ingrained
in peoples minds, so use will increase.
pioneer Dr. David Farber is the Alfred Fitler Moore Professor of Telecommunications
Systems and professor of computer and information science.
to Urban Issues and Social Welfare Policies
Is Another Way to Respond to Attacks
I am concerned that the terrorist attacks will affect our domestic welfare
policy in two ways: one, the attention focused on defense and anti-terrorism
efforts is likely to take needed attention away from other domestic-policy
and social-welfare issues. The second is that the attacks are having a
negative impact on the domestic economy. Increases in unemployment in
particular affect a wide range of social-welfare problems.
1996 Welfare Reform Act has to be reauthorized next year. It will be an
interesting time to review the policy if unemployment levels are rising.
For example, will our sympathies for those who have lost their jobs as
an indirect result of the terrorist attacks extend to those facing their
five-year lifetime limit for welfare? Ironically, because of the weakened
economy and the greater appreciation of the federal role in setting national
priorities, this may be a more favorable climate for revisiting the adequacy
of welfare reform.
strong economy is also very important to the growth of cities and to reducing
poverty, which has grown increasingly concentrated in cities. Our recent
period of economic growth has played a major role in the revitalization
of cities. The fact that these attacks occurred when we were already in
a weak economic environment could bode poorly for cities, and for the
tourism sector on which many of them have come to depend. Moreover, the
attacks on New York City may raise a new set of fears about urban living
(and working), just when fears about street crime seemed to be allayed
and interest in re-urbanization among middle-class professionals was growing.
To the extent that an economic-stimulus package softens the blow, it could
help, but many of these issues go beyond the reach of public spending.
indirect effect of the terrorist attacks is that people may better appreciate
the value of the federal government and public infrastructure, and be
willing to make investments beyond anti-terrorist measures. A lot of the
benefits of economic growth to cities and the success of social-welfare
programs depends on a strong federal role and on a solid public infrastructure,
not just for providing aid to disaster victims but for business development,
transportation to centers of job growth, etc.
is also worth noting that there are a host of potential negative ripple
effects of the attacks, and that people who arent necessarily going to
be eligible for direct emergency relief may still be adversely affected.
So attention to urban issues and social-welfare policies is another waybeyond
anti-terrorism measuresto respond to the victimization from these attacks.
Culhane is an associate professor of social welfare policy whose primary
research areas include homelessness and housing policy.
Arts Remind Us of Just How Much Is at Stake
What does literature
teach us about terrorists and their actions? In novels such as Joseph
Conrads The Secret Agent and Henry Jamess The Princess Cassamassima,
each of which portrays terrorist conspiracy and violence, we learn something
about the inflamed zeal and the all-devouring outrage that can lead to
the destruction of innocent lives. The books of Thomas Pynchon and Don
DeLillo are shaped by the conviction of universal conspiracy that leads
their characters to lives of bottomless dread and an absorbing, sometimes
perfected paranoia. These are, I suppose, the sorts of fiction that might
be considered relevant to our current situation.
However, I think
a more instructive text is to be found in the last scene of Shakespeares
King Lear. The aged king enters, carrying the body of his murdered
youngest daughter, the blameless Cordelia, whose death seems a rebuke
to any possible conception of divine or earthly justice. Unable to revive
her, Lear falls to his knees and begins to howl like an animal. In this
heartbreaking moment, Shakespeare seems to acknowledge that language itself
may crack under the strain of extremity. And about justice, he is silent.
When Ive taught
this play to undergraduates at Penn, some of them have asked how Shakespeare
could have been so cruel: Why would he inflict such unmerited punishment
on the most virtuous character in all his plays? The great 18th-century
critic and scholar, Samuel Johnson, had a similar response. I was so
shocked by Cordelias death, Dr. Johnson said, that I know not whether
I ever endured to read again the last scenes of the play till I undertook
to revise them as an editor.
The answer to
my students, and to Dr. Johnson as well, is that Shakespeares job is
not to offer comforting resolutions, or to reassure us with conveniently
happy endings. On the contrary, the plays unforgettable achievement is
to portray the depth and power of Lears suffering with such truth and
ultimately with such grandeur that we share in his pain, his loss, his
What all of this
suggests, quite accurately, is that literature and the other arts do not
teach us much of anything, certainly not in any simplistically didactic
way. Art does not tell us what particular choices we should make as we
respond to the tragedy of the World Trade Center, or to any other calamity.
Instead, art recalls us to our humanness, enacting our deepest moral and
emotional experiences in languages that transcend our own paltry powers
of expression. In short, the arts remind us of just how much is at stake.
The attacks on
the World Trade Center and the Pentagon represent an eruption of evil
that all of us, as citizens, must confront. But the arts will offer no
formulas or recipes to assist us in that urgent practical task. Rather,
in the face of barbarism, art reaffirms humanitys capacity for integrity
and endurance and exaltation and beautyexactly the worlds of value and
meaning that wanton acts of violence seek to deny, and even to destroy.
In this profound sense, art is not ornamental but necessary. As we look
into the frightening abyss that these actions have left in their wake,
we need to immerse ourselves in the richness and vitality, the satisfaction
andyesthe joy, to which the artistic imagination gives us access.
Conn is the deputy provost of the University and the Andrea Mitchell Professor
Fittest Memorial Would Be Office Buildings Filled with People, Working
Together, Carrying On
routinely designed to resist fire, and to minimize the damage caused by
hurricanes and earthquakes, but what about terrorism? The imagination
of terrorists is diabolical (and unpredictable), and while no building
can stand up to the impact of a fully fueled 767, that does not mean that
we are powerless. United States embassies abroad are designed to withstand
truck bombs, snipers, and other assailants. Structures are reinforced,
shatter-proof and bullet-proof glass is substituted, entrances are secured
with surveillance cameras and metal detectors. Many of these practices
will undoubtedly become commonplace in future commercial buildings.
the light of the events at the World Trade Center, it is likely that the
safety standards for tall buildings will be reevaluated. For example,
while fire-stairs are chiefly intended for emergency egress, as we have
seen they are also the only means of access for rescue teams, since ladders
are useless in high-rise buildings. More and larger staircases, located
at the periphery of buildings not only in their inner cores, would help.
More attention will be paid to evacuation routes, which can be strengthened,
and pressurized to reduce smoke. The large expanses of glass that characterize
modern architecture will likely be decreased to reduce the amount of falling
fragments. None of this need produce unattractive buildings.
there will always be a self-imposed limit to architectural hardening.
The J. Edgar Hoover FBI Building in Washington is, I assume, extremely
secure. However, it is also particularly unsightly, with blank walls at
ground level that create a dismal experience for pedestrians. Cities thrive
on openness and human interaction, and a city of bunkers would be a contradiction.
Architects will have to learn how to incorporate security measures unobtrusively,
the way that they have learned to deal with handicapped access, and energy
issues will come to the fore when plans are drawn up for the World Trade
Center site. Already, some are demanding a vast memorial commemorating
the victims and heroes of this tragic event. There has been a recent trend
toward larger and more elaborate monuments, as in Oklahoma City in the
wake of the bombing of the federal building. Clearly a memorial is needed,
but occupying the site in this way strikes me as inappropriate.
York City is a hard-headed town, not given to sentimental gestures. As
the admirable public reaction to the disaster showed, this is a place
where people roll up their sleeves and do what needs to be done. The fittest
memorial to those who lostand gavetheir lives would not be trees or
sculptures or monuments but office buildings filled with people, working
together, carrying on.
York is a vertical city, and the new buildings will be tall. Some may
protest that this is tempting the devil. But, as the attack on the six-story
Pentagon shows, low buildings are hardly immune from terrorism. In any
case, there is nothing more American than a skyscraper. The beauty of
a tall building, as the Chrysler Building and Rockefeller Center demonstrate,
is its proud expression, a sense of soaring into the sky. This is not
simply a function of extreme height, and the replacements for the World
Trade Center need not be 110-stories. In truth, the twin towers were always
an awkward presence. More an act of hubris than poetry, the minimalist
shafts were an intrusion on the skyline. While New Yorkers came to terms
with them, they were hardly beloved. The new buildings should be built
to the scale of the neighboring World Financial Center, filling a void
and complementing the lower Manhattan skyline. Larry Silverstein, the
leaseholder of the destroyed World Trade Center, says that he plans to
rebuild. I hope that he sets his architectural sights high. The new towers
must be outstanding buildings, for they will not only be a proud rejection
of terrorist intimidation and an affirmation of faith in the citys future.
They will also be a cenotaph.
Rybczynski is the Martin and Margy Meyerson Professor of Urbanism and
director of the Urban Design Program. His books include Home and
Has Changed Most Is My Sense of What Is Important
on the Penn campus, my emotions since September 11 have raced from horror
at the death and destruction, to wonder at the heroism, to elation at
patriotism aroused, to fear of the continuing threat, to worry that the
governments response would create more problems than it solved by not
being sufficiently subtle or patient. I told my class that I hoped the
terrorists had gotten America wrong by attacking the World Trade Center
rather than the Statue of Liberty, the Pentagon rather than the Houses
thought is that the attacks remind us in brutal fashion of how mutually
dependent we are, and what a huge role the government must play in organizing
those networks of self-help that we call society. For some time I have
thought and taught that the American identity is to be found neither
in the self-regarding individualism on which our economic system is theoretically
based, nor in the various kinds of utopian communities that have borne
our dreams (including the utopian community of the nation), but rather
in the conversation between individualism and community in our daily lives.
Our world may
well return to the outer semblance of the familiar patterns of daily living,
but for me, each of those trivial transactions of family, friends, and
humdrum sustenance will henceforth carry a new and deeper significance.
What has changed most is my sense of what is important.
of the National Endowment for the Humanities and Penn president, Dr. Sheldon
Hackney Hon93 is professor of U.S. history.
Samuel Hughes, Susan Lonkevich, and John Prendergast, and freelance writers
Joan Capuzzi and Mark Bernstein worked on this article. Responses were received
both via e-mail and through telephone interviews and for the most part were
completed before the U.S. air strikes against Afghanistan began on October
Nov/Dec Contents | Gazette
Copyright 2001 The Pennsylvania
Gazette Last modified 11/1/01
by Tifenn Python
and the Middle East
U.S. After the Attacks