Terrorism has been a part of human society for centuries if not millennials. Even if we struggle to agree on a common definition we can still have an educated conversation on what it looks like and what has been the impact on societies both past and present. This course will examine terrorist movements and terrorist acts across time and place.
We will discuss how ideology feeds terrorism and how disparate groups can share ideologies in different parts of the world. We will look at how leadership functions as well as how terrorist groups get their message out, both to gain recruits as well as to strike fear and anxiety in populations. In addition, we will debate which actors are best placed to counter terrorism in our societies. The focus of the course is on practice and real-world events, not theory.
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John Gilmour joins the PDI team after a thirty-seven year career in the federal government in positions of growing responsibility. His initial professional experience was with Transport Canada and the management of Canada’s major international airports. This included serving as project manager and analyst for airport security programs. This led to a two-year assignment to the Security and Intelligence (Operations) section of the Privy Council office as a senior policy analyst, in support of the office of the National Security Advisor to the Prime Minister (NSA).
From there John joined the Canadian Security and Intelligence Service (CSIS), where he served in a variety of branches, most recently as the Head-Strategic Planning and Operational Analysis with the Service’s Counter-Terrorism Division. Although retiring in 2018 from the Service, John continues to be periodically retained as a senior advisor for CSIS.
John has a BA from Carleton University (Ottawa), and a Masters and Ph.D from the War Studies Program of the Royal Military College of Canada (Kingston). He serves on the Advisory Board of the Canadian Association for Security and Intelligence Studies (CASIS) – Vancouver, and is a Fellow with the Canadian Global Affairs Institute (CGAI).