Surviving a Terror Attack
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The numerous terror attacks happening in our country are a continuous reminder that terrorism is a critical aspect of our security and needs even more vigilance. The attention should mainly focus on our preparedness to confront terror when it threatens. The recent attack on Garissa University College points out to us that our awareness should not be on prevention only but also how to handle an ongoing hostage situation. The goal is to maximize chances of survival as much as possible. In the event of a terror attack:
a) If you are taken hostage and decide not to resist, assure your captors of your intention to cooperate.
b) It may be difficult but remain calm and patient.
c) Regain your composure as quickly as possible after capture, face your fears, and try to master your emotions.
d) Take mental note of the direction, time in transit, noise, and other environmental factors that may help you identify your location.
e) Note the numbers, names, physical characteristics, accents, personal habits, and rank structure of your captors.
f) Anticipate isolation and terrorist efforts to confuse you.
g) Try to mentally prepare yourself for the situation ahead as much as possible. Stay mentally active.
h) Do not aggravate your abductors; instead, attempt to establish a positive relationship with them. Do not be fooled by a friendly approach–it may be used to get information from you.
i) Avoid political or ideological discussions with your captors; comply with their instructions, but maintain your dignity.
j) Do not discuss or divulge any classified information that you may possess.
k) Escape only when there is an assurance you will be successful otherwise you will be risking death.
If there is a rescue operation:
a) Drop to the floor.
b) Be quiet and do not attract your captors’ attention.
c) Wait for instructions.
d) For confirmation purposes, rescue forces may treat everyone as suspects until they are cleared as victims.

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