Episode 227 – Sometimes laughter is the best medicine, even when it comes to terrorism
Satire is a powerful tool. Think of Jonathan Swift’s novel of 1726 Gulliver’s Travels, a brilliant swipe at British society in the 18th century. Laughing at someone, or something, can make us feel better about situations where we may feel powerless. In this vein, should we laugh at terrorism, a form of political violence that kills thousands of people every year? Is it OK to mock death? Is it OK to do so on the 22nd anniversary of the single greatest terrorist attack in history or is it unconscionable? Borealis looks at the role of satire when we discuss terrorism.
In a world of multiple voices and opinions it can be very hard to know where to turn. One choice is to look to those who actually worked in counter-terrorism and foreign intelligence in the national security world. In these short podcasts, 30-year Canadian intelligence veteran Phil Gurski looks at these issues and provides insight into what they mean and what we need to do about them.
About Phil Gurski
Phil Gurski is the President and CEO of Borealis Threat and Risk Consulting Ltd. He worked as a senior strategic analyst at CSIS (Canadian Security Intelligence Service) from 2001-2015, specialising in violent Islamist-inspired homegrown terrorism and radicalisation, and as a multilingual analyst at CSE (Communications Security Establishment) from 1983-2001. He is the author of six books on terrorism, including the second edition of The Peaceable Kingdom: A history of terrorism in Canada from Confederation to the present, published by Double Dagger in February 2023.