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As the government gets ready to hand out an unprecedented amount of money to the families of 9/11 victims, writer AMANDA RIPLEY looks at the impossible calculus of compensation: how courts put a dollar value on the loss of life, the ways that equation has evolved over the centuries, and how three families are coping. She found that, just as the money is beginning to flow, many of the victims' families are enraged by their awards. Talk with her on Tuesday, Feb. 5, at 8 p.m. E.T.
This week TIME.com is publishing an excerpt from novelist and military historian CALEB CARR's new book, The Lessons of Terror. In the book, a provocative history of warfare against civilians from Roman times to the present, Carr argues that such tactics have always failed--and are destined to fail again. Chat with him about the war on terror on Monday, Feb. 4, at 8 p.m. E.T.