During the past decade, we have witnessed a dramatic transformation in the nature and uses of terrorism. In the 70s, it was often repeated that terrorists "want a lot of people watching, not a lot of people dead"; today, it is more accurate to say that terrorists want a lot of people dead, and even more people crippled by fear and grief. A major strategic intent of modern terrorists is to use larger scale physical attacks to cause stress in the general population. These changes in terrorist strategy have made it clear that we need better psychological and social responses to terrorism and man-made disasters. The psychological science needed to provide proper and effective treatment for victims of horrendous events, such as September 11th, and future potential terrorist acts, simply does not exist, so military, medical, and psychological experts must work together to improve their understanding of mass casualty terrorism.
In Psychology of Terrorism leading national and international experts present the first results of this effort, including the newest findings on treatment of and clinical responses to terrorism along with their respective underlying theories. They address the history of terrorism; types and effects of weapons of mass destruction or disruption; the role of the military, government agencies, and volunteer groups in responding to terrorist threats; psychological consequences of terrorism; and treatment of special populations such as children and older adults.
This volume will be an ideal text for both academic and professional courses as well as a comprehensive resource for mental health clinicians and researchers, medical care providers, educators, public health specialists, government employees, police and fire departments, and non-profit agencies that provide services and craft policy.
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Bruce Bongar is at Stanford University School of Medicine. Lisa M. Brown is at University of South Florida.
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