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Tag: terror events

Nightclubs: Soft Targets for Terrorists

In an attack reminiscent of the Orlando terror event last year, a popular nightclub became a slaughterhouse on New Year’s Eve when a gunman caused 39 deaths and about 70 injured. ISIS has claimed responsibility for the incident.

As a physician, my focus is how to heal wounds, not how to cause them. A terrorist, however, has quite different goals. Normally, they have a short window of opportunity, and their focus is to cause as many casualties as possible during their brief (hopefully) remaining time on Earth. read more

The Culture of Learned Helplessness

learned-helplessness

The United States has entered an era of domestic terrorism I often refer to as the “New Normal”. It’s become very clear that terror’s weapons can be anything from knives (Minnesota), to guns (Orlando, San Bernardino) to bombs (NY/NJ, Boston). Even trucks (Nice, France) have been used by terrorists to cause casualties among decent citizens.

In previous attacks on American soil, we have acted quickly and decisively to confront the enemy (Pearl Harbor comes to mind). Yet, unlike FDR, our current president seems to consider acts of terror a deserved consequence of the West’s terrible history of behavior towards Muslims, despite much of it occurring 1000 years ago during the crusades. read more

Lessons That Could Save Your Life in Terror Events

syrian refugees

I’ve written quite a bit lately about shooting and terror events, but recent events highlight the fact that gun violence isn’t the only way that a terrorist can fulfill their mission of making casualties out of decent citizens. Clearly, bombings, stabbings, or shootings can occur literally anytime and anywhere in the U.S.: at churches, clubs, holiday parties, schools, the mall, at 2 in the morning or in the middle of the day. They’re part of what I call the “New Normal” and we have to be prepared to act if we’re caught in one of these events. read more

How a Fighter Pilot’s Strategy Could Save Your Life in a Terror Event

fighter plane jet

image by pixabay.com

It’s pretty clear in these uncertain times that there’s a New Normal out there. There will always be the possibility of a terror event or shooting whenever crowds of people gather. Almost daily, a terrorist or madman causes death and destruction somewhere. If you learn to be situationally aware, you won’t be a soft target for these savages.

ooda loop graphic

the OODA loop

The basics of situational awareness are described in what is called the OODA Loop. It was first devised by Air Force fighter pilot Colonel John Boyd. Originally meant to help in an aerial dogfight, it’s useful in all sorts of settings. The four steps of the OODA Loop are: Observe, Orient, Decide, and Act. It’s a loop because you go back to the observe step after you act, to determine if the situation has resolved or if further action is needed. read more

The Active Shooter: Run, Hide, or Fight

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It’s hard to read the news without seeing reports of the latest shooting by terrorists or the deranged and disgruntled. Few believe that they could possibly wind up in the crosshairs of a gunman’s sight, but it can happen anytime, anywhere. What would be your response?

The natural response for most people is not to do anything. You’ve heard me talk about “normalcy bias” before. That’s the tendency for people to believe everything follows a pattern and that the day will proceed normally; they’re usually right. When a terrorist event breaks that pattern, however,  the unprepared brain takes time to process the new situation. People will think that the sound of gunfire is fireworks, or anything less threatening than an assassin out to kill them. read more