Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Interrogation vs. Torture in the War on Terror

After a proposed executive order, “Detention and Interrogation of Enemy Combatants”was "leaked" and President Trump affirmed his pro-waterboarding stance (though giving Defense Secretary Jim Mattis the ultimate choice to use it) a decision was made to remove sections on torture and black site prisons ("White House Backing Down on Renewed Use of Torture, Black Sites," New York Magazine, February 4, 2017). This document also planned to overturn a 2009 executive order (13491) that interrogators must adhere to tactics outlined in the current Human Intelligence Collector Operations (“Army Field Manual”).

Review selected hard copy/online library books related to military interrogation vs. torture at LSC-CyFair Branch Library. Click the title of a listed item, select the "Place Hold" button in the listing, and enter your library card number and PIN for each title you want to request for pick up at the library.

Use these subject words and phrases to find more information in the library catalog:
  • detention of persons United States
  • military interrogation United States
  • torture
  • waterboarding
Rogue Justice: The Making of the Security State by Karen J. Greenberg
Crown, 2016.
call number: 364.973 Gre

"Rogue Justice connects the dots for the first time--from the Patriot Act to today's military commissions, from terrorism prosecutions to intelligence priorities, from the ACLU's activism to Edward Snowden's revelations. And it poses a stark question: will the American justice system ever recover from the compromises it made for the war on terror? Riveting and deeply reported, Rogue Justice could only have been written by Karen Greenberg, one of this country's top experts on Guantanamo, torture, and terrorism, with a deep knowledge of both the Bush and Obama administrations. Now she brings to life the full story of law and policy after 9/11, introducing us to the key players and events, showing that time and again, when liberty and security have clashed, justice has been the victim." - publisher's summary excerpt

Consequence: A Memoir by Eric Fair
Henry Holt and Company, 2016
call number: 956.704 Fai

"Consequence is Fair's story, the story of a man who begins with a desire to serve and, through a winding series of choices, becomes an interrogator for a private contractor at Abu Ghraib during one of our nation's darkest moments. In 2004, after several months as an interrogator, Fair's now constant nightmares take new forms: first, there had been the shrinking dreams; now the liquid dreams begin. By the time he leaves Iraq after that first deployment (he will return), Fair will have participated in or witnessed a variety of aggressive interrogation techniques including sleep deprivation, stress positions, diet manipulation, exposure, and isolation." - publisher's summary excerpt


Why Torture Doesn't Work: The Neuroscience of Interrogation by Shane M. O'Mara
Harvard University Press, 2015
call number: 616.852 Oma

"Does torture accomplish what its defenders say it does? For ethical reasons, there are no scientific studies of torture. But neuroscientists know a lot about how the brain reacts to fear, extreme temperatures, starvation, thirst, sleep deprivation, and immersion in freezing water, all tools of the torturer's trade. These stressors create problems for memory, mood, and thinking, and sufferers predictably produce information that is deeply unreliable-and, for intelligence purposes, even counterproductive. As O'Mara guides us through the neuroscience of suffering, he reveals the brain to be much more complex than the brute calculations of torturers have allowed, and he points the way to a humane approach to interrogation, founded in the science of brain and behavior." - publisher's summary excerpt

Monday, February 6, 2017

The Refugee Crisis and the Executive Order on Immigration

A federal judge suspended President Trump's temporary travel ban created by executive order 13769, setting up litigation that could land eventually in the Supreme Court ("Seattle Federal Judge Orders Nationwide Halt to Immigration Ban," Los Angeles Times, February 4, 2017).

Review selected hard copy/online library books and streaming video related to refugees at LSC-CyFair Branch Library. Click the title of a listed item, select the "Place Hold" button in the listing, and enter your library card number and PIN for each title you want to request for pick up at the library.

Use these subject words and phrases to find more information in the library catalog:
  • human trafficking
  • humanitarianism
  • immigrants
  • immigration 21st century
  • refugee camps
  • refugees
  • United States immigration government policy
Integration Nation: Immigrants, Refugees, and America at Its Best by Susan E. Eaton
The New Press, 2016.
call number: 305.906 Eat

"In this well-written collection of case studies, Eaton (The Children in Room E4) and her collaborators explore civic efforts focused on the integration-rather than assimilation-of immigrants, a concept that celebrates the talents of established residents and newcomers alike." - Publishers Weekly review excerpt

International Migration: A Very Short Introduction by Khalid Koser
Oxford University Press, 2016
call number: 304.8 Kos

"The rising rates of international migration have been matched by growing public and media interest around the world…Using interviews with migrants from around the world, Koser presents the human side of issues such as asylum, human trafficking, migrant smuggling, and the international labor force, inviting readers to come to their own conclusions on the international migration situation today." - publisher's summary excerpt

ABC News, 2016 (from the Films on Demand database)
On-Campus Access: 
Available to any user on campus, except where noted.
Off-Campus Access:
Login with your 14-digit LSCS ID or HCPL card number or use your My LoneStar login upon clicking the LSC-Jakarta/LSC-Online link after selecting an LSC-CyFair Users database title.

"Nightline follows the journey of Syrian refugees who now call America home. Meet students attending American schools for the first time and see protests against refugee arrivals. - publisher's summary excerpt

The Consequences of Chaos: Syria's Humanitarian Crisis and the Failure to Protect by Elizabeth G. Ferris and Kemal Kirişci
Brookings Institution Press, 2016
call number: 956.91 Fer

"The Consequences of Chaos looks beyond the ever-increasing numbers of Syria's uprooted to consider the long-term economic, political, and social implications of this massive movement of people. Neighboring countries hosting thousands or even millions of refugees, Western governments called upon to provide financial assistance and even new homes for the refugees, regional and international organizations struggling to cope with the demands for food and shelter--all have found the Syria crisis to be overwhelming in its challenges. And the challenges of finding solutions for those displaced by the conflict are likely to continue for years, perhaps even for decades." - publisher's summary excerpt

Monday, October 31, 2016

Is Fracking Hastening a Water Crisis?

In a five-year period, some "358 billion gallons of water" was used in U.S. hydraulic fracturing or fracking that translates to "an amount equal to the annual water needs of 200 mid-sized cities," based on a recent report by Ceres, a nonprofit interested in global sustainability ("Over Half of U.S. Fracking Wells Are in Water-Stressed Areas, Report Says," Mashable, October 6, 2016). "About 57 percent of the nearly 110,000 shale gas wells" are in areas where water is not plentiful, such as California, Texas, Colorado, and Oklahoma.

Review selected hard copy/online library books related to hydraulic fracturing or fracking at LSC-CyFair Branch Library. Click the title of a listed item, select the "Place Hold" button in the listing, and enter your library card number and PIN for each title you want to request for pick up at the library.

Use these subject words and phrases to find more information in the library catalog:
  • Fracking
  • Gas well drilling
  • Gas wells
  • Hydraulic fracturing
  • Shale gas industry
The Green and the Black: The Complete Story of the Shale Revolution, the Fight over Fracking, and the Future of Energy by Gary Sernovitz
St. Martin's Press, 2016.
call number: 333.823 Ser

"Sernovitz explains the reality of fracking: what it is, how it can be made safer, and how the oil business works. Sernovitz also tells the bigger story. Fracking was just one part of a shale revolution that shocked our assumptions about fueling America's future. . .America, once again the largest oil and gas producer in the world, has altered its balance of power with Russia and the Middle East. Yet the shale revolution is not without its infamous downsides. It has disrupted local communities, raised fears of pollution, and prolonged the world's use of fossil fuels. Is there any way to reconcile the costs with the benefits of fracking? To do so, we must start by understanding fracking and the shale revolution in their totality. This book bridges the gap in America's energy education." - publisher's summary excerpt

The Human and Environmental Impact of Fracking: How Fracturing Shale for Gas Affects Us and Our World edited by Madelon Lubin Finkel
Praeger, 2015
call number: 363.738 Hum

Contributors writing the chapters:
"* Offer a comprehensive, impartial understanding of unconventional natural gas development from many different perspectives by experts in the field
* Draw from the findings of the most up-to-date research and discusses areas where scientific findings are yet unclear
* Address fracking's potential effects on humans, animals, and environmental factors including air quality, water quality, and climate change
* Explain the economic, legal, regulatory, and ethical issues surrounding fracking
* Examine social and community issues and the industry perspective" - publisher's summary excerpt


Liveright Publishing, 2015
call number: 363.119 Bri

"When philosophy professor Adam Briggle moved to Denton, Texas,
he had never heard of fracking. Less than three years later he would
successfully lead a citizens' initiative to ban hydraulic fracturing in
Denton--the first Texas town to challenge the oil and gas industry. . .Briggle brings us to town hall debates and neighborhood meetings where citizens wrestle with issues few fully understand." - publisher's summary excerpt