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Reference Desk
September 2001

Homeland Defense

Center for Strategic and International Studies
Defending American in the 21st Century

Bioterrorism Information for Minnesotans
A fact sheet to help Minnesotans understand the risks of bioterrorism, the state's response, and the answers to questions people may be asking about their own protection.

Is Minnesota ready?
U.S. intelligence officials reportedly told members of Congress that if the U.S. strikes Afghanistan, the chance of another attack on U.S. targets at home or abroad is 100%. If another attack involved biological or chemical weapons, would Minnesota's health system be ready? Minnesota is usually credited with having one of the best preparedness programs in the nation, but critics say we still may be woefully unprepared if an attack would occur.

John Hopkins University: Center for Civilian Biodefense Studies
The Center for Civilian Biodefense Studies strives to increase national and international vigilance regarding medical and public health threats posed by biological weapons.

Biological and Chemical Terrorism: Strategic Plan for Preparedness and Response
From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, a blueprint for strengthening public health-care ability to protect the United States against the treat of bioterrorism.

Smallpox: An Attack Scenario
Tara O'Toole, of Johns Hopkins School of Public Health, describes the possible sequence of events during a terrorist attack involving the viriolae virus.

Demon in the Freezer
How smallpox, a disease of officially eradicated twenty years ago, became the biggest bioterrorist threat we now face.
Source: Hardcopy The New Yorker, July 12, 1999, pp. 44-61. Thanks to Richard Preston and The New Yorker.


Special Operations Reference Manual
Special Operations (SO) encompass the use of small units in direct or indirect military actions focused on strategic or operational objectives.

Special Operations Forces
From the 1998 Department of Defense Annual Report to Congress.

Doctrine for Joint Special Operations
This document outlines the joint activities and performance of the Armed Forces of the United States in joint operations and provides the doctrinal basis for U.S. military involvement in multinational and interagency operations.

The Anti-War Movement

The Washington Peace Center
For over 35 years, the Washington Peace Center has maintained a strong opposition to acts of violence, whether domestic or foreign, in the home or on the battlefield.
A central listing of anti-war activities around the world.

American Friends Service Committee
AFSC is a Quaker organization that includes people of various faiths who are committed to social justice, peace, and humanitarian service.


International Rescue Committee
The IRC's Program for Afghan Refugees in Pakistan focuses on providing assistance to under-served refugee areas. Special consideration is given to projects for minority populations and projects that expand services to women and children.

United States Committee for Refugees
For more than 40 years USCR has responded to the needs of men, women and children who are the innocent victims of war or persecution based on the ethnicity, race, religion, or political beliefs.

USAID's Emergency Report on Afghanistan
The United States Agency for International Development is an independent federal government agency that receives overall foreign policy guidance from the Secretary of State. It is the principal U.S. agency to extend assistance to countries recovering from disaster, trying to escape poverty, and engaging in democratic reforms.

The continuing effort to monitor the human impact of 20 years of conflict and human-rights abuses in Afghanistan.

Refugees International
A non-governmental organization serving refugees, displaced persons, and other dispossessed people around the world.

Aviation Security

Federal Measures To Improve Aviation Security
An overview of the recently announced changes in federal oversight of domestic aviation security.

New Aircraft Guidelines
New national security concerns have prompted the FAA to designate airspace above some areas in the United States as restricted and/or prohibited to air carrier or private aircraft.

U.S. Department of Transportation: Actions Needed to Improve Airport Security
United States Senate joint hearing before the Committee on Governmental Affairs and the Subcommittee on Oversight of Government Management, Restructuring and the District of Columbia.

Airports Security Certification
A list of U.S. and International airports that have been determined to meet current aviation security requirements, as established by the Federal Aviation Administration.

How Airport Security Works


Secretary General Annan's Address to the UN General Assembly

The Structure and Background of the United Nations

Map of Central Asia

Afghanistan and the Politics of Islam
The World Fact Book: Afghanistan
Chiefs of State: Afghanistan

The World Fact Book: Egypt
Chiefs of State: Egypt

The World Fact Book: Oman
Chiefs of State: Oman

The World Fact Book: Pakistan
Chiefs of State: Pakistan

The World Fact Book: Saudi Arabia
Chiefs of State: Saudi Arabia

The World Fact Book: Uzbekistan
Chiefs of State: Uzbekistan


Bush lifts sanctions against India, Pakistan

U.S. Department of Commerce: Indian and Pakistan Sanctions Center

Council for a Livable World: India-Pakistan Sanctions Legislation Fact Sheet

Arab Americans

100 Questions and Answers About Arab Americans

Arab American Institute

FBI Director Denounces Attacks Against Arab Americans

Violence and Harassment against Arab Americans and Muslim Americans
Anti-Defamation League

Understanding Islam

Exploring Religions: Islam

Islam: A Brief Introduction

PBS: Islam - Empire of Faith

Terrorist Groups

Overview of State-Sponsored Terrorism

Background Information on Terrorist Groups

Postmodern Terrorism

PBS Frontline: Hunting Bin Laden

Terrorist Activity

The Justice Department's Terrorism in the United States: 1996-1999

Chronology of Significant Terrorist Incidents: 2000

Significant Dates in Terrorism History

Containing Terrorism

United Nations Security Council Resolution
The United Nations Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution that reaffirms its unequivocal condemnation of the terrorist acts on the United States on 11 September and lays out wide-ranging strategies to combat international terrorism.

U.S. Legislation related to the attack of September 11, 2001

Signatories to the International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Financing

Threat of Terrorism to the United States
Louis J. Freeh, May 10, 2001

Preparedness and Safety

The Pentagon emergency page

The Federal Emergency Management Administration

The Rand Corporation
A National Strategy for Combating Terrorism


Americans Traveling in the United States and Abroad

FAA: Traveler Briefing

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