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Perspectives on terrorism

As a result of the attack and increased interest by students, Professor Gary Perlstein has added a second section to his “Perspectives in Terrorism”class at 8 a.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Currently, there are 20 registered students in the morning session and the later session is full. The original session is being held in Neuberger Hall room 11.

Since the Sept. 11 attack on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, Perlstein has been rather popular with reporters. Accepted as an expert in matters of terrorism, Perlstein, with a doctorate in criminology, has taught at PSU for over 30 years.

In the last two weeks, Perlstein’s name has appeared in the Willamette Week, on National Public Radio (NPR), as a by-line in the Portland Tribune, on a panel with FBI agents and, most recently, in an outdoor magazine.

After being the Administration of Justice chair for 8 years Perlstein stepped-down as of Sept. 1. “I am tired of paperwork, I want to go back to just being a teacher,” Perlstein said.

In his syllabus, Perlstein warns that “the potential exists for one act of terrorism causing even more death than … Sept. 11.”

Perlstein was the first to call the Earth Liberation Front (ELF) a terrorist group.

“Although they haven’t killed anyone that I know of with violence, it’s bound to happen,” Perlstein said.

A previous act of terrorism on American soil occurred in 1954 as an assassination attempt on President Harry Truman. In that attempt, five congressmen were wounded when four people shot from the spectator gallery in the U.S. House of Representatives.