Terrorist attacks indiscriminately target civilians, create extreme anxiety and feelings of helplessness, and erode commonly held beliefs in justice. These consequences are no doubt intended by the perpetrators of terrorist violence and human rights abuses. Perhaps by design, attacks of terrorism have long-term as well as short-term effects on human health, and these effects may be related to the choice of weapons and the vulnerabilities of the populations targeted for attack. Modes of terrorism range from assaults with firearms1-3 to explosions4,5 to rape.6 Attacks may take place in affluent societies,3-5,7,8 rapidly developing nations,1 or fragile states destabilized by years of civil conflict.6,9,10 Research is providing new evidence for the clinical management of the physical and mental health effects of terrorism, which may vary in severity according to the resilience of affected individuals and communities.4-11
Cole TB, Flanagin A. 2011 Theme Issue on Violence and Human Rights—Call for Papers. JAMA. 2010;304(23):2645. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.1841
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