Compare the national security measures of WWII to those of today
March 19, 2003
Web posted at: 1:21 AM EST (0621 GMT)
Overview: Iraq's U.N. ambassador called President Bush's ultimatum "unacceptable" on Tuesday. Ambassador Mohammed Aldouri added that Bush's 48-hour deadline for Iraqi President Saddam Hussein to leave the Gulf country was "illegal, immoral, and unjustifiable." His statement came as Iraq braced for war and as the U.S. raised the bar on its homeland security.
After students read "Iraq denounces Bush ultimatum; U.S. bolsters homeland security" and watch the first segment of CNN Student News (the video can be accessed from CNNStudentNews.com) pose the following questions:
1. How have Iraq and France responded to President George W. Bush's recent national address? According to the video, how do some Americans feel about the possibility of going to war against Iraq? What is your opinion on this issue?
Teachers: For an activity on President Bush's national address on the possible war against Iraq, go to the Daily Classroom Guide for March 18, 2003 (http://fyi.cnn.com/fyi/student.news.guide/2003/03/18/).
2. Why did the Bush administration raise the national terrorist threat alert level from "yellow" to "orange" on Monday? Which groups pose the greatest security risk to the U.S.? What is "Operation Liberty Shield"? What measures are being taken to beef up security throughout the U.S.? According to a report recently released by the General Accounting Office, what two sectors are still vulnerable to terrorist attacks? What issue does the standoff on the Washington Mall call into question?
3. Are you worried that a war with Iraq will trigger new terror attacks in the U.S.? Discuss. Invite a representative from a local or state law enforcement agency to talk to your students about the measures that are being taken to protect your community from terrorist activity. After the presentation, ask students: Do you think these measures would be effective? Why or why not? If not, what else should local or state authorities do?
4. How did the September 11 attacks affect Americans' sense of security? Point out to students that, like the 9-11 attacks, the attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941 also changed Americans' concept of security. Challenge students to interview older family members about their perceptions of life in the U.S. after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Have students learn about the measures that were taken to protect homeland security during WWII and how these measures compare to the ones being taken today. After students present their findings, ask: What similarities can one find between the role of citizens during World War II and their role in the War on Terrorism? How did both World War II and the 9/11 terrorist attacks change the U.S. government? How have the attacks of September 11 "changed the rules" for homeland security? Discuss.