Learning to fight terrorism
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Free DVD educates on how to identify suspicious activities
UNLV’s Institute for Security Studies has released “Studies Seven Signs of Terrorism,” a DVD aimed at educating the public on suspicious activity.
The ISS is a research and outreach department of the university run on an infrastructure grant designed by Sen. Harry Reid, given for the purpose of security training, research and outreach, both within the university and throughout the state of Nevada.
Scott Smith, executive director of the ISS, said the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department asked the program for support to spread the word about their new counterterrorism fusion center, one right here in Las Vegas.
“[Metro asked ISS] ‘We need help with the public, so the public is aware of what is suspicious activity and who would they call if they see something,’” Smith said.
Eight months of work and $110,000 dollars later, the ISS finished the 15-minute video produced by Emmy Award-winning production company Josh Woodtree Productions and narrated by Fox 5 News anchor Shelly Bruner, Smith said.
“The DVD is open to the public first in Nevada,” Ross Bryant, director of training at ISS, said. “[It will be] available in English and in Spanish. It’s also going across the country to other entities looking for increased security and surveillance.”
Because the information is universal, other states such as Florida and Hawaii have expressed interest in the DVD, both for it’s pertinent subject matter and because these places have strong tourism industries, Bryant said.
In an effort to promote the project, a media event was held at the UNLV Foundations Building, where the DVD was shown in both languages, and the ISS sent the DVD to 34 other states as far away as Guam, Bryant said.
The DVD was released well after the terrorism attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, for the purpose of endorsing the new counterterrorism centers, 50 of which are operational across the country with 20 more in the works.
However, the creation of these fusion centers should not start a scare, Smith said.
“Neither the DVD nor the opening of the fusion centers is the function of any known or anticipated action that is focused on Nevada or on Clark County,” Smith said.
Many students support the ISS and its anti-terrorism measures.
“I think that’s great because people need to be informed,” Chloe Green, UNLV engineering major, said. “It’s great that the school is actually doing something about it.”
“We’re all anti-terrorism here,” Aaron Moses, UNLV marketing major, said.
Not to be mistaken for blind faith, Moses expressed his interest in seeing the movie before fully endorsing its effectiveness.
“I think awareness of homeland security and anti -terrorism is a good thing,” Jon Wozniak, UNLV student, said. “If it’s blatantly racist, then that’s not good,”
The DVD does in fact urge the viewers not to discriminate against race when it comes to potential terrorists.
The DVD is free of charge and the ISS urges anyone who is interested to email Sharon Savage at firstname.lastname@example.org or call Ross Bryant at (702) 939-4644.