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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          NEWS SERVICES
210 Pittsboro Street, Campus Box 6210
Chapel Hill, NC  27599-6210
(919) 962-2091   FAX: (919) 962-2279


Not for publication

Updated April 24, 2003 No. 179

UNC faculty experts can help reporters explain the war with Iraq

Note to editors: Please use the below table of contents to navigate to the desired topic.

1. National political, military issues, national security
2. Implications for U.S. foreign policy, rebuilding Iraq, impact on other countries in the region
3. Historical contexts, the Middle East, the various faces of Islam
4. Public health issues
5. Impact of war on society
6. Impact on families, children
7. Psychological issues and anxiety disorders
8. The economy
9. Impact of war on financial markets
10. Impact of public opinion, media on decisions
11. The airline industry
12. Safety issues at UNC

National political, military issues, national security

· Dr. Richard Kohn, (919) 962-9700, (919) 419-0323 (home), or, a history professor and chair of the curriculum in peace, war and defense, is an expert on topics including American military policy, strategy, war-making, presidential war leadership and civil-military relations. He is at work on "The President at War: Presidential War Leadership from George Washington to George Bush," a book analyzing the challenges of successful war leadership by presidents of the United States over the course of American history. Kohn also is co-directing a major research project on the gap between the military and American society today – whether it exists, if so, its nature, and whether a gap could harm military effectiveness and/or civil-military cooperation. For more information about Kohn, please visit UNC News Release No. 131.

· Dr. Mark Crescenzi (cre-SIN-zi), (919) 960-9153 or, assistant professor of political science, is an expert on international conflict and war. He can discuss political options the United States faces in the international arena, and, in the realm of national security, why these attacks were not prevented. He also specializes in links between international economic interdependence and conflict. For more information about Crescenzi, please visit

· Dr. H. Douglas Robertson, (919)962-8703 or, director of the Highway Safety Research Center, is also a Major General in the US Army Reserve. He recently relinquished command of the 108th Training Division headquartered in Charlotte, NC and retired after a 37-year career. He served as an infantry advisor in Vietnam and was with the 3rd Infantry Division early in his career. He is knowledgeable in the areas of Army training, leadership, military operations and strategy, and the role of the Army Reserve.

· Dr. Terry Sullivan, (919) 962-0413, (919) 593-2124 (cell), or, associate professor of political science, is an expert on the presidency and White House operations. He can comment on presidential leadership in a crisis and explain likely pressures as the war unfolds on various offices and staff members within the administration. Sullivan was associate director of the nonpartisan White House 2001 Project, which created the first blueprints and descriptions ever of jobs and operations that are unique to the White House, including interviews with former administration officials and a book, "The White House World," which addresses the dynamics of White House operations and the functions of critical White House offices. For more information about Sullivan, please visit

· Dr. Michael B. MacKuen, (919) 962-0421, (919) 960-0934 (home), is a political science professor who specializes in public opinion - how citizens gather and digest information about politics and what factors connect citizens, politicians and public policy. He co-wrote the book "Affective Intelligence and Political Judgment" (University of Chicago Press, 2000); contributed a chapter on citizens and political psychology to "Emotions and Politics: The Dynamic Functions of Emotionality" (Cambridge University Press, 2001); and has written numerous scholarly articles on public opinion, measuring the popularity of presidents and the effects of politics on attitude change. For more information on MacKuen, please visit

· Dr. William E. Leuchtenburg, (919) 967-1257, one of the nation's top experts on the U.S. presidency and a UNC professor emeritus of history, commented for national networks during George Bush's inauguration in 1989, for PBS, and Ronald Reagan's second inauguration in 1985, for CBS. Leuchtenburg, whose books include "In the Shadow of FDR: From Harry Truman to Bill Clinton" and "The FDR Years," was an expert commentator for C-SPAN during Clinton's second inauguration in January 1997 and for CBS during Clinton's first inauguration, with Dan Rather and the late Charles Kuralt. A past president of the American Historical Association, Leuchtenburg  joined UNC's faculty in 1982.

Implications for U.S. foreign policy, rebuilding Iraq, impact on other countries in the region

· Jennifer Bremer, (202) 289-6671 or, a professor of public policy and director of the Washington office of the Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise. Bremer, who has previously lived in the Middle East and has worked there extensively over the past 25 years, has expertise in international trade and development, emerging markets, sustainable enterprise and government-business relations. She and Kenan Institute Director Jack Kasarda wrote a paper for the Milken Institute Review, "The Origins of Terror: Implications for U.S. Foreign Policy." (For more information on the paper, please click here.)  Through its Washington office, the Kenan Institute, part of the Kenan-Flagler Business School, builds bridges between business and other parts of society. It pursues this mandate through "research in action," integrating cutting-edge research with innovative, partnership-building programs around the world.  For more information about Bremer, please visit

Historical contexts, the Middle East, the various faces of Islam

· Dr. Thomas Tweed, (919) 843-7773, (919) 962-3934 or, a professor of religious studies, is concerned about potential "misrepresentations of Islam." His expertise concerns American representations of Islam and Islam as part of the fabric of religion in America. His essay on how to teach Islam, written for high school teachers, is posted on the Web site of the National Humanities Center at: For more information, please visit

  • Dr. Sarah Shields, (919) 962-8078, (919) 843-5797, (919) 933-0187 (home) or, associate professor of history, teaches courses on the modern Middle East. She is a specialist on historical contexts and ideologies of the people and interest groups of the region. For more on Shields, please visit UNC News Release No. 429 (from 2001) or

  • Dr. Edward E. Curtis IV (919) 962-3925, or, assistant professor of religious studies, specializes in the history of Islam in the United States, especially among African-Americans. He can comment on potential reactions among Muslims to the U.S.-led invasion, particularly in this country, and his concern about possible backlash and hate crimes against U.S. Muslims. Curtis fears two possible adverse effects of the war: one, that some Muslims might perceive the attack as part of a larger crusade against them; and two, that radicals such as Osama bin Laden might use the war to strengthen their message that Christians and Muslims cannot get along, and therefore a clash of civilizations is inevitable. "My fear is that this plays right into the hands of people like Osama bin Laden," Curtis said. For more information about Curtis, please visit
  • Public health issues

    · Dr. Bill Roper, (919) 966-7467 or, dean of the School of Public Health, is a former director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and senior White House policy adviser who currently serves U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Tommy Thompson's bioterrorism advisory council. He can provide an overview on health effects, governmental mobilization in time of crisis, public health preparedness and readiness to deal with bioterrorist attack or other crises, what's being done in North Carolina and nationally to ready the public health workforce.

    · Dr. David Weber, (919) 216-1817 (pager) or, is an infectious disease expert and professor of epidemiology in the School of Public Health and of pediatrics and medicine in the School of Medicine. He has been actively involved in preparedness efforts at UNC Hospitals, where he is a clinician and also associate director of the Statewide Program in Infection Control and Epidemiology. Weber can also readily discuss biological terror agents and tools for physicians and other health workers faced with identifying their symptoms and treating their victims.

    · Dr. Peter H. Gilligan,, is the director of the Clinical Microbiology-Immunology Laboratories and Professor of Microbiology-Immunology and Pathology -Laboratory Medicine at UNC School of Medicine. He is an expert in the diagnosis of infectious diseases including emerging infectious diseases and agents of bioterrorism. He has been involved at the state and national level in training laboratory scientists to recognize potential agent of bioterrorism.

    · Dr. Bruce Cairns, (919) 966-3693 or, is a trauma and burn surgeon and associate director of the N.C. Jaycee Burn Center at UNC Hospitals. Cairns is a veteran of the U.S. Navy's medical corps. While stationed in Guam, he directed the care of burn patients injured in the crash of Korean Air flight 801 on Aug. 5, 1997. At UNC Hospitals, he played an active role in the care of burn patients injured in a collision between an F-16D fighter and a C-130 transport at Pope Air Force Base on March 23, 1994, and also in an explosion at the West Pharmaceuticals plant in Kinston, N.C., on Jan. 29, 2003.

    · Dr. Mark Sobsey, (919) 966-7303 or, is a professor of environmental sciences and engineering in the School of Public Health. He can address issues related to environmental health microbiology and infectious diseases, waterborne, foodborne and airborne microbial disease risks, and water treatment and food safety.

    · Dr. David Leith, (919) 966-3851 or, is a professor of environmental sciences and engineering in the School of Public Health. His expertise is in aerosol physics and the control of airborne contaminants. He can speak to the effects of dust and smoke on a population's health, as well as to general air-related health effects and air dispersion methods.

    · Dr. Pia MacDonald, (919) 843-3415 or, is project director for the North Carolina Center for Public Health Preparedness and a research assistant professor in the School of Public Health's department of epidemiology. Her areas of expertise include applied epidemiology (epidemiology applied to the state and local health departments), outbreak investigation and surveillance, public health workforce development and Geographic Information Systems (its use in public health including outbreak investigation and surveillance).

    · For more information from the School of Public Health about bioterrorism, please visit

    · For other experts or questions related to health and bioterrorism, please contact Lisa Katz, or (919) 966-7467 in the School of Public Health, or Tom Hughes, or (919) 966-6047, in the School of Medicine.

    Impact of war on society

    · Dr. Catherine Lutz, (919) 962-3353, (919) 929-9696 (home), or, is a professor of anthropology who specializes in the study of war and its impact on society in the United States and abroad. Topics she can discuss include how past wars have shaped the world and affected cultures, economies and politics. Her research has focused on how past wars have changed U.S. history. Her most recent book, "Homefront: A Military City and the American 20th Century," traces the impact of Fort Bragg on Fayetteville, N.C. She says the book relates Fayetteville’s history with that of the nation and examines how the proximity of the military presence affected that community’s well-being. In addition, Lutz studies mass media literacy. That work focused on how National Geographic magazine presents the world to its readers and resulted in a book, "Reading National Geographic," published in 1993. Lutz studies how the mass media select video footage and photographs for news coverage and how that process helps shape and is shaped by culture.

    Impact on families, children

    · Dr. Dennis Orthner, (919) 962-6512 or, a professor at the UNC School of Social Work and associate director for policy development and analysis of the Jordan Institute for Families, has worked with all four branches of the military for the past 25 years. He consults with the military regarding the types and levels of services provided to military families, and policies related to military families. He is now working with the U.S. Army and Air Force to evaluate the levels and effectiveness of services to families. 

    · Dr. Gary Bowen, (919) 962-6542 or, William R. Kenan Jr. distinguished professor at the UNC School of Social Work, has worked with all four branches of the military for the past 25 years. He has worked closely with Dr. Dennis Orthner to assist the armed forces in improving the support services offered to military families. Currently he is working with the U.S. Air Force to improve support services to families through community-building.

    · Joanne Caye, (919) 962-3598 or, a clinical instructor in the UNC School of Social Work, has done extensive research and taught classes on managing the effects of disasters on families and children. She, along with colleagues, conducted several workshops in eastern North Carolina after hurricane Floyd on how families cope with disasters and tragedy. She also teaches students who plan to go into social work after they graduate how to help families and children deal with disasters and conflicts.

    · Dr. Thomas M. Haizlip, (919) 733-5344, a professor in the division of child and adolescent psychiatry of the School of Medicine, also directs the child mental health training program at Dorothea Dix Hospital, a state psychiatric facility. One of his areas of expertise is on how to help families and children handle disaster and conflict situations. Haizlip said certain symptoms may be expected in children who are grappling with the war: unusual fears and anxieties, sleep disturbances and reluctance to attend schools. Haizlip also could speak to the most effective ways that parents and educators can encourage children to talk about their feelings – as well as the most effective ways these adults can reinforce to children that their world is safe. Another faculty member with expertise in talking with children about traumatic events: Dr. Andrea Hussong, (919) 962-3989,, assistant professor of psychology.

    · Dr. Patrick Akos, (919) 843-4758, assistant professor of school counseling in the School of Education, was formerly a school counselor and has had extensive experience in counseling students (and teachers) after crisis situations. He can address the most effective ways of counseling students – as well as the importance of making sure the adults who teach them are getting the counseling assistance they need.

    Psychological issues and anxiety disorders

    · Dr. Erica H. Wise, (919) 962-5432, (919) 962-5034 (voicemail), or, clinical associate professor of psychology, directs the department's training clinic for graduate students. Previously in UNC's Student Health Services for 18 years, she has counseled clients who have experienced trauma and trained in the American Red Cross model for critical incident stress debriefing. The latter involves counseling emergency services personnel who have combated disaster on the front lines, but it also is adaptable for helping survivors and people experiencing "vicarious trauma," a term for distress about a massive tragedy even when one was not directly involved.

    · Dr. David S. Janowsky, (919) 966-3365 or, is professor and former chair of psychiatry, a fellow in the American College of Neuropsychopharmacology and a distinguished life fellow of the American Psychiatric Association. Specializing in the biology of mood disorders, including mania and depression, he has sought to understand the brain and mood-depressing effects of an overabundance of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine in the brain. That interest has led him to study the brain effects of nerve agents, which kill or injure by increasing brain and body acetylcholine. Along with his colleague Dr. David Overstreet, he is now developing antidotes to the brain effects of nerve agents. Janowsky believes potentially more effective ways of treating nerve agent poisoning exist, such as through common medications including the anti-nausea agent scopolamine. Gulf War syndrome, he thinks, might be due to an overabundance of acetylcholine caused by nerve agent release.

    · Dr. Margaret Miles, (919) 966-3620 or, is a professor at the School of Nursing with a background in pediatric nursing and counseling. Miles was the founding president of the Society of Pediatric Nurses.  One of her areas of expertise is grief, particularly the grief of parents. She also has had experience in dealing with survivors of two disasters: survivors of the Hyatt hotel walkway collapse in Kansas City in 1981 and Hurricane Floyd in North Carolina in 1999. She can speak about grief, the phases in response to disaster - pre-impact, impact and post-impact -and how to help survivors cope with their resulting psychological reaction, including euphoria in having survived, disillusionment in having lost a sense of innocence and an old way of life and reconstruction in going forward with life.

    · Dr. R. Reid Wilson, (919) 942-0700 or, is associate clinical professor of psychiatry in the School of Medicine and a clinical psychologist in private practice. He specializes in the treatment of anxiety disorders, including panic disorder and panic attacks, fear of flying, phobias, social anxiety, worries, obsessive-compulsive disorder, psychological responses to trauma and disasters and post-traumatic stress disorder. He designed and served as lead psychologist for American Airlines’ first national program for the fearful flier. He is the author of the book "Don’t Panic: Taking Control of Anxiety Attacks."

    The economy

    · Dr. James F. Smith, (919) 968-9995 (home), (919) 962-3176 (office), (919) 593-0308 (cell), or, finance professor at the Kenan-Flagler Business School, can share his opinions about the economic impact on the national and state economies from his perspective as the nation’s most accurate economic forecaster – a title The Wall Street Journal has given him three times in the past five years. Smith can also share an eyewitness account of the destruction and death he saw on Sept. 11, 2001, in New York City from his hotel room across the street from the World Trade Center. For more about Smith’s expertise and interests, please visit

    · Dr. Stanley W. Black III, (919) 966-5926, (919) 967-6059 (home), or, Lurcy professor and former chairman of economics at UNC, can discuss international monetary issues and the likely effects of war on the U.S. economy. He spent last year at the International Monetary Fund in Washington, D.C., and has much experience with national and world economic issues.

    · Dr. Michael Salemi, (919) 966-5391, 929-9504 (home), or, professor of economics, is a macroeconomist who can talk about potential threats to the U.S. economy, both direct and indirect. He also can discuss world and national financial markets. He recently spent time in Geneva as a visiting professor at the Graduate Institute of International Studies.

    · Dr. Patrick J. Conway, (919) 966-5376, (919) 967-4009 (home), or, professor of economics, is an international economist. He has worked at or with the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the U.S. Department of State.

    · For other experts or questions on the affects of war on the economy and business sectors, please contact Kim Spurr, or (919) 962-8951 at the Kenan-Flager Business School.

    Impact of war on financial markets

    · Dr. Jennifer Conrad, (919) 962-3132 or, finance professor, has expertise in investments and the stock market. She is chair of the business school’s finance area and the MBA investment management concentration. Her research is focused in the investments area, where she has analyzed patterns in returns and their potential applications, such as contrarian investment strategies, and studied the ability of asset pricing models to explain predictable patterns in returns. For more information, please visit

    Impact of public opinion, media on decisions

    · Dr. Cori Dauber, (919) 962-4938, (919) 967-4419 (home), or, an associate professor of communication studies, specializes in the influence of argument and rhetoric on decision-making in defense policy. She analyzes how policy decisions are influenced by public opinion and the media, including visual imagery. Dauber is finishing a book on the role that argument and rhetoric have played in national decisions to intervene with military force since Operation Desert Storm. The book will address why the United States intervened abroad when it did (Kosovo) and why in other instances it did not (Rwanda). Dauber served on the Defense Advisory Committee on Women in the Services from 1997-99, and on its executive committee from 1998-99. At Carolina for 12 years, Dauber earned a doctorate in communication studies from Northwestern University. Her work has been published in journals including Armed Forces and Society, Security Studies, and Defense Analysis. She also teaches in UNC's curriculum in peace, war and defense and has received grants and awards from the Military History Institute of the U.S. Army War College, the Naval History Center and the Air Force Historical Research Agency. Dauber chooses to work only with print media and radio.

    The airline industry

    · Dr. John D. "Jack" Kasarda, (919) 962-8201 or, management professor with the Kenan-Flagler Business School and director of the Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise, can speak to the impact the Sept. 11 tragedy will have on the airline industry and air commerce, what it will mean to the cost and convenience of air travel, what the impact of changes in the airline industry will have on the economy and other topics related to the airline industry. Kasarda leads a team of UNC-Chapel Hill researchers and practitioners focused on helping governments, the air-commerce industry and airports strategically leverage airport-linked commercial development. He serves as a consultant to airports and air cargo firms as well as the National Academy of Sciences Transportation Research Board.

    Safety issues at UNC

    · Peter Reinhardt, (919) 843-5913 or is director of UNC's Environment, Health and Safety. He can speak to the issue of emergency preparedness (including laboratory safety and preparedness for the threat of terrorism) on campus. For more information on emergency preparedness, please visit


    School of Public Health contact:
    Lisa Katz,, (919) 966-7467;
    School of Medicine contact
    : Tom Hughes,; (919) 966-6047;
    Kenan-Flager Business School contact: Kim Spurr,, (919) 962-8951;
    News Services contact:, (919) 962-2091 (during normal business hours). Evenings and weekends, please contact the emergency pager at (919)216-2584.