Homeland Security

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HOMELAND SECURITY 1

HomelandSecurity

HomelandSecurity

Securityis a fundamental aspect that poses a great challenge to all nationsacross the globe mainly owing to the rising numbers of terroristgroups. In this regard, the United States has authorized theDepartment of (DHS) to monitor and counteract anyterrorist attacks (Reese, 2012). The DHS works in cooperation withother government agencies such as U.S. Secret Service (USSS), U.S.Coast Guard (USCG), and Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)among others to fulfill their mandate. These agencies carry out fiveprimary homeland security missions, namely stopping terrorism andpromoting security, managing and securing borders, administering andenforcing U.S. migration laws, strengthening national resilience andpreparedness, and safeguarding and securing cyberspace. Irrefutably,effective homeland security measures remain essential since theinadequate address of security concerns lead to adverse consequencesfor the entire nation.

Radiological,nuclear, chemical, and biological threats are significant areas ofpanic. These attacks result into severe fallouts although thepossibility of such incidences is moderately small. However, theprobability of occurrence of small-scale chemical attacks is moreprobable owing to the accessibility of toxic industrial chemicals andlittle knowledge necessary to execute such attacks. While fabricatingnuclear weapons is difficult, the use of improvised nuclear devicesincreases the homeland security risk (The Department of HomelandSecurity, 2014). These types of attacks are always fatal when theyoccur and cost the federal government a substantial amount of capitalto lessen their severity. For instance, the September 11 attack inthe United States claimed lives of many people and destroyed variousinfrastructures. Arguably, this attack proved to the world hownuclear explosions could be lethal. Additionally, terrorist attacksthwart people’s peace and most importantly disrupt the federalauthorities’ operations.

Inaddition, the advancement in technology poses a risk to the homelandsecurity. The world has become interconnected with digitalcommunication infrastructure, which helps in disseminatinginformation within a fraction of a minute. As a result, cyberspacehas become a fundamental part of Americans’ daily life.Unfortunately, malicious groups continue to exploit technologicalvulnerabilities thus increasing security risks (Dale, 2014). Theseactors aim to steal trade secrets, personal information aboutcitizens, and sensitive data from government agencies and businesses.While several companies make cyber security a central aspect of theirbusiness risk management, most of the public sector entities andsmall firms face personnel and financial constraints in meeting thisend. Therefore, the majority of the companies suffer losses becauseof frauds and other cybercrimes thus jeopardizing efforts to enhancehomeland security. The losses also adversely affect the United Stateseconomy through reduced taxes.

Climatechange and its related trends also incidentally act as security riskmultipliers. For example, poverty, social tensions, and environmentaldegradation compel people to migrate to the United States. Thisrecurrent, short-term, and disaster-driven immigration exposesAmerica to violence and terrorist activities especially when moreintense storms and high temperatures disrupt power systems andtelecommunications (The Department of , 2014). TheUnited States uses a substantial amount of money to prepare, respond,and recover from such occurrences. Indeed, the violent extremistshave presently portrayed a persistent interest in advancingimprovised explosive devices as well as the techniques to shirksecurity measures. Therefore, weather-related events make Americavulnerable to attacks because terrorists usually seek to exploit suchloopholes.

Inmy opinion, the United States has adequately addressed the issue ofhomeland security threat. Various federal agencies and departmentssuch as Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Department of (GHS), and the Department of Human and HealthServices (HHS) among others, which are mandated with the role ofenhancing homeland security, have been efficient and comprehensive infulfilling their obligation. Indeed, the intelligence communityconducts exhaustive research in their operations to avoid a repeat ofthe September 11 attack. Arguably, the ability of the security teamsto remain vigilant and gather adequate information to predict theattacks has been pivotal in ensuring a peaceful America. Importantly,all security departments work in collaboration to ensure efficientand effective communications in combating terrorism. In conclusion,there may be loopholes in homeland security operations, but it isbeyond a reasonable doubt that security teams are presently usingevery mean possible to counteract malicious groups’ efforts and toguarantee a safe environment for all.

References

Dale, C. (2014). The 2014 Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) andDefense Strategy: Issues for Congress. Washington: CongressionalResearch Service.

Reese, S. (2012). Defining : Analysis andCongressional Considerations. Congressional Research Service, Libraryof Congress.

The Department of . (2014). The 2014 Quadrennial Review: hearing before the Subcommittee onOversight and Management Efficiency of the Committee on HomelandSecurity, House of Representatives, One Hundred Thirteenth Congress,second session, June 20, 2014 (United States., Congress.,House.).

Homeland Security

  • Uncategorized

HOMELAND SECURITY 1

HomelandSecurity

Risks, Threats, and Consequences

Processof Determining Risks and Threats

Counties and citiesacross the United States have developed processes that they apply indetermining the strategic challenges risks that pose as the greatestrisks to their respective communities. These processes differ byjurisdiction but they generally follow almost similar methodologies.The Department of has identified six strategicchallenges that prevail in the country. These strategic challengesinclude terrorist threat, cyber threats, biological concerns, nuclearterrorism, transnational criminal organizations, and natural hazards.Some communities are more prone to some strategic challenges thanother communities are although there are some strategic challengesthat concern the entire country such as terrorist and cyber threats(Prior &amp Hagmann, 2014).

The first step isthe definition of the context of the threat. In this way, there isthe analysis of a particular strategic challenge in relation to aparticular community. For example, the analysis of terrorist threatsdefinition takes into consideration how its perpetration is possiblein the county or city. This step also involves communicating withsecurity agencies and other related homeland security relatedagencies to ensure that there is enough information concerning aspecific threat. The next step involves the identification of thepotential risks. Although the local government should consider allstrategic challenges as risks, it is important to note some riskshave more potential of being perpetrated or happening than othershave. In this respect, it is important for the government securityagencies and other associated agencies to identify the potentialrisk. For instance, in the context of a natural hazard, the risk of ahailstorm happening in a county is less in summer than in winter(White, 2014).

The next stepinvolves the assessment and analysis of the risk. After theidentification of a strategic challenge as a potential risk, theassessment is critical in order to find out a number of factors thatare associated with the risk. This will be critical in ensuring thatthe city is in a position of mitigating the likelihood of a riskbecoming a security disaster, which could lead to damage and loss oflife. These mitigation factors are also crucial for ensuring that inthe event that the risk occurs, its damage and destruction will haveminimal impact to the society. The next step involves the developmentof alternatives, which include finding alternative means ofcontaining the risk and ensuring that id never happens. There aredifferent alternatives that may involve changing the handling ofvarious activities in the city including infrastructural and socialchanges. For instance, in the event that there is the identificationof a terrorist attack being a potential risk targeting a popularrecreational place, then the city authorities can find alternativesof moving to an alternative venue, increasing security personnel, orcancelling the activity.

The next step isthe decision making and implementation phase. During this phase,there is the evaluation of the identified alternatives based on theirviability and ability to mitigate the occurrence of the risk.Prioritization and execution of preventative measures comes firstavoid interrupting the community activities and creating unnecessarypanic among members of the community. However, when the alternativesdo not include viable preventative measures, then the city has toimplement other alternatives such as cancelling an event or movingthe venue. The final step is evaluation and monitoring where localgovernment agencies evaluate whether the implemented mitigationfactors and alternatives have been efficient in deterring theoccurrence of a threat associated with the risk. This is critical inensuring that if there were shortcomings in the way the risk washandled, there will be improvements and enhances executed to validatea given mitigation factor or alternative. Monitoring is also criticalbecause it enhances the community’s security of future threats(Prior &amp Hagmann, 2014).

Prioritizationof Resources

Communities,security agencies, and government agencies do not have the resourcesneed to address all the security threats associated with the sixstrategic challenges. In this respect, the community has to decide onwhat to prioritize as the most devastating security risk if it was tooccur. However, it is important to note that different members of thecommunity suffer differently from different threats and theirconsequences when they occur. However, there are a number of threatsand risks prioritized over others. For instance, threats that canclaim many lives and adverse health implications for a long time havepriority over other risks that may result in economic or financiallosses (Alcaraz &amp Zeadally, 2015).

In this respect,the community should prioritize the resources that prevents massdeaths of people have priority. This is the rationale behind manyjurisdictions in the United States have invested heavily in lawenforcement agencies, intelligence, and emergency medical teams.These resources play a critical role in saving lives in the eventthat a catastrophic event that endangers the lives of people occurs.Economic stability is also another pillar of many communities and forthis reason, resources that safeguard the community against economicdevastation such as the destruction of infrastructure and associatedeconomic factors are available for many communities. Economic factorsalso include communication and cyber infrastructure. Many localgovernments have invested in resources that protect against cyberthreats (White, 2014).

CommunityResponsibility for

Thecommunity plays a critical role in securing their homeland fromrisks, threats, and associated consequences. However, it is importantto note that protecting the community is more complicated thanprotecting a school, church, business, or home. This means that theprivate property owners or people that need protection may hindersome community activities designed to secure the homeland. For thecommunity to secure their homelands efficiently, it is imperative toconsider various factors including legal restraints and moralconsiderations when undertaking the responsibility of protecting thecommunity. For instance, some people may choose to become thecommunity vigilante against terror threats but in so doing endangertheir lives or infringe on the rights of some members of the society(Kahan, 2015).

For the communitymembers to secure their homeland efficiently from the six identifiedstrategic challenges there is a need for the availability of theright communication channels and education within the residents ofthe county or city. The availability of the right communicationchannels means that when residents become aware of a potentialthreat, they can easily communicate with the authorities who willconduct an investigation and implement the right deterrence andmitigation instruments. In the same respect, education is critical inensuring that the members of the county or city are aware of thestrategic challenges and the risks associated with the challenges.This will be crucial in ensuring that people are aware when there isa risk or threat and they can effectively communicate with theconcerned authorities to enable the execution of the right mitigationand deterrence strategies (Shan &amp Zhuang, 2013).

References

Alcaraz, C., &amp Zeadally, S. (2015). Critical infrastructureprotection: requirements and challenges for the 21st century.International journal of critical infrastructure protection,8, 53-66.

Kahan, J. H. (2015). Resilience Redux: Buzzword or Basis for HomelandSecurity. Affairs, 11.

Prior, T., &amp Hagmann, J. (2014). Measuring resilience:methodological and political challenges of a trend security concept.Journal of risk research, 17(3), 281-298.

Shan, X., &amp Zhuang, J. (2013). Cost of equity in homelandsecurity resource allocation in the face of a strategic attacker.Risk Analysis, 33(6), 1083-1099.

White, R. (2014). Towards a unified homeland security strategy: Anasset vulnerability model. Affairs, 10.

Homeland Security

  • Uncategorized

HomelandSecurity

HomelandSecurity

Certainevents in history have left a mark and will always be remembered asgreat tragedies. One of such is the 9/11 terror attacks. This is atrauma that was felt globally, and Americans who were directly orindirectly affected ended up having an altered psyche (Borradori,2013). Years later the government has been alert to ensure an eventlike this never happens again. I decided to ask several of my friendsand a relative how they felt about what the government is doing aboutterrorism in the United States.

Twoof my friends feel that information that is available for U.S.citizens is not comprehensive enough and most of the times they endup just making assumptions and following rumors that are coming upevery so often. On the other hand, my cousin feels that 9/11 eventwas a wake-up call for the government and he does agree with theUnited States response. They all feel the term “War on Terrorism”is point on and should not be changed. They also feel that the war onterrorism is a never ending cycle and there`s no hope of stopping it.One of the main reason the war will never end is the difference ofopinion, values, religion, and competition for resources that willmake U.S. a target for terrorist. Thus the government has to be onits toes to ensure that they protect the country even if winning maynot be possible.

Theyunanimously agree that as the government works to eliminateterrorism, some civil liberties are and will be curtailed. My friendsaid, &quotSometimes it`s a necessary evil because if the governmenthad been vigilant before the 9/11 event would have been avoided.There are some things the U.S. government can`t win if they continueto play by the rules.&quot However, my other two intervieweessignificantly disagreed. They feel that wiretapping is a greatinfringement of one`s right to privacy and should not be done. Theonly time it should be done is if they have evidence and all they arejust looking for is more evidence to be sure that the individual isguilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Otherwise doing it without anyother form of proof on the suspect is wrong.

Suspectsshould be charged so that the whole country can see the whole processand also get to see the evidence being presented before the court.Involving citizens helps the citizens see the progress being made onthe war on terrorism. Secret prisons are necessary, however, howsecret are these secret prisons. As we know, there are no secretsbetween two people. If possible, they should be transferred tocountries where they are wanted for the same crimes so that thesuspects can be tried there too. This way the U.S. government cancollaborate with other governments that have more resources to detainmore suspects. Guantanamo Bay is should still be used. The fear thatpeople have when they hear Guantanamo Bay is enough for it to be usedas a form of punishment for detainees.

Theinvasion of Iraq and Afghanistan makes them feel less safe as theybelieve that some residents of these two countries may decide toretaliate. One of my interviewees did not understand what American isstill doing in Iraq and Afghanistan and strongly felt that theyshould pack and leave. The other two felt that the root of allterrorism stems from these two countries and if the government cancut the roots through the invasions, then that`s better than uswaiting here like sitting ducks. Capturing of terrorist like SaddamHussein is proof enough that the Iraq and Afghanistan invasion was aright move (Harris &amp Aid, 2013).

UnitedStates is known as the land of milk and honey. This is why the U.S.it is a hot bed for people from different cultural and religiousbackground. It would be wrong to say that other citizens arejustified to judge the negative view of America as the governmentpriority is to protect its people. There has been an increase innegative attitudes towards Muslims in America as well as around theworld. My friend gave an example of a social experiment he saw wheretwo women wanted someone to look after their bags as they went therestroom. One was Caucasian, and the other one was Muslim. Everyperson the Caucasian asked had no problem looking after her bag, butout of all the people, the Muslim lady asked only one was willing tocare for her bag for her. This goes a long way to show that there arestereotypes and beliefs that people have about Muslim people.

Inconclusion, the responses I received show that the America peoplestill have faith in the government, although it`s shocking thatpeople feel that the war on terror will never end. One thing thatstood out for me is the social experiment. I didn’t realize howdeeply rooted the fear for the Islamic religion was, until my friendtold me that story. I want to work in an organization that isinclusive and doesn’t discriminate against anyone.

References

Borradori,G. (2013).&nbspPhilosophyin a time of terror: Dialogues with Jurgen Habermas and JacquesDerrida.University of Chicago Press.

Harris,S., &amp Aid, M. M. (2013). CIA Files Prove America Helped Saddam asHe Gassed Iran.&nbspForeignPolicy.

Homeland Security

  • Uncategorized

HOMELAND SECURITY 1

HomelandSecurity

Risks, Threats, and Consequences

Processof Determining Risks and Threats

Counties and citiesacross the United States have developed processes that they apply indetermining the strategic challenges risks that pose as the greatestrisks to their respective communities. These processes differ byjurisdiction but they generally follow almost similar methodologies.The Department of has identified six strategicchallenges that prevail in the country. These strategic challengesinclude terrorist threat, cyber threats, biological concerns, nuclearterrorism, transnational criminal organizations, and natural hazards.Some communities are more prone to some strategic challenges thanother communities are although there are some strategic challengesthat concern the entire country such as terrorist and cyber threats(Prior &amp Hagmann, 2014).

The first step isthe definition of the context of the threat. In this way, there isthe analysis of a particular strategic challenge in relation to aparticular community. For example, the analysis of terrorist threatsdefinition takes into consideration how its perpetration is possiblein the county or city. This step also involves communicating withsecurity agencies and other related homeland security relatedagencies to ensure that there is enough information concerning aspecific threat. The next step involves the identification of thepotential risks. Although the local government should consider allstrategic challenges as risks, it is important to note some riskshave more potential of being perpetrated or happening than othershave. In this respect, it is important for the government securityagencies and other associated agencies to identify the potentialrisk. For instance, in the context of a natural hazard, the risk of ahailstorm happening in a county is less in summer than in winter(White, 2014).

The next stepinvolves the assessment and analysis of the risk. After theidentification of a strategic challenge as a potential risk, theassessment is critical in order to find out a number of factors thatare associated with the risk. This will be critical in ensuring thatthe city is in a position of mitigating the likelihood of a riskbecoming a security disaster, which could lead to damage and loss oflife. These mitigation factors are also crucial for ensuring that inthe event that the risk occurs, its damage and destruction will haveminimal impact to the society. The next step involves the developmentof alternatives, which include finding alternative means ofcontaining the risk and ensuring that id never happens. There aredifferent alternatives that may involve changing the handling ofvarious activities in the city including infrastructural and socialchanges. For instance, in the event that there is the identificationof a terrorist attack being a potential risk targeting a popularrecreational place, then the city authorities can find alternativesof moving to an alternative venue, increasing security personnel, orcancelling the activity.

The next step isthe decision making and implementation phase. During this phase,there is the evaluation of the identified alternatives based on theirviability and ability to mitigate the occurrence of the risk.Prioritization and execution of preventative measures comes firstavoid interrupting the community activities and creating unnecessarypanic among members of the community. However, when the alternativesdo not include viable preventative measures, then the city has toimplement other alternatives such as cancelling an event or movingthe venue. The final step is evaluation and monitoring where localgovernment agencies evaluate whether the implemented mitigationfactors and alternatives have been efficient in deterring theoccurrence of a threat associated with the risk. This is critical inensuring that if there were shortcomings in the way the risk washandled, there will be improvements and enhances executed to validatea given mitigation factor or alternative. Monitoring is also criticalbecause it enhances the community’s security of future threats(Prior &amp Hagmann, 2014).

Prioritizationof Resources

Communities,security agencies, and government agencies do not have the resourcesneed to address all the security threats associated with the sixstrategic challenges. In this respect, the community has to decide onwhat to prioritize as the most devastating security risk if it was tooccur. However, it is important to note that different members of thecommunity suffer differently from different threats and theirconsequences when they occur. However, there are a number of threatsand risks prioritized over others. For instance, threats that canclaim many lives and adverse health implications for a long time havepriority over other risks that may result in economic or financiallosses (Alcaraz &amp Zeadally, 2015).

In this respect,the community should prioritize the resources that prevents massdeaths of people have priority. This is the rationale behind manyjurisdictions in the United States have invested heavily in lawenforcement agencies, intelligence, and emergency medical teams.These resources play a critical role in saving lives in the eventthat a catastrophic event that endangers the lives of people occurs.Economic stability is also another pillar of many communities and forthis reason, resources that safeguard the community against economicdevastation such as the destruction of infrastructure and associatedeconomic factors are available for many communities. Economic factorsalso include communication and cyber infrastructure. Many localgovernments have invested in resources that protect against cyberthreats (White, 2014).

CommunityResponsibility for

Thecommunity plays a critical role in securing their homeland fromrisks, threats, and associated consequences. However, it is importantto note that protecting the community is more complicated thanprotecting a school, church, business, or home. This means that theprivate property owners or people that need protection may hindersome community activities designed to secure the homeland. For thecommunity to secure their homelands efficiently, it is imperative toconsider various factors including legal restraints and moralconsiderations when undertaking the responsibility of protecting thecommunity. For instance, some people may choose to become thecommunity vigilante against terror threats but in so doing endangertheir lives or infringe on the rights of some members of the society(Kahan, 2015).

For the communitymembers to secure their homeland efficiently from the six identifiedstrategic challenges there is a need for the availability of theright communication channels and education within the residents ofthe county or city. The availability of the right communicationchannels means that when residents become aware of a potentialthreat, they can easily communicate with the authorities who willconduct an investigation and implement the right deterrence andmitigation instruments. In the same respect, education is critical inensuring that the members of the county or city are aware of thestrategic challenges and the risks associated with the challenges.This will be crucial in ensuring that people are aware when there isa risk or threat and they can effectively communicate with theconcerned authorities to enable the execution of the right mitigationand deterrence strategies (Shan &amp Zhuang, 2013).

References

Alcaraz, C., &amp Zeadally, S. (2015). Critical infrastructureprotection: requirements and challenges for the 21st century.International journal of critical infrastructure protection,8, 53-66.

Kahan, J. H. (2015). Resilience Redux: Buzzword or Basis for HomelandSecurity. Affairs, 11.

Prior, T., &amp Hagmann, J. (2014). Measuring resilience:methodological and political challenges of a trend security concept.Journal of risk research, 17(3), 281-298.

Shan, X., &amp Zhuang, J. (2013). Cost of equity in homelandsecurity resource allocation in the face of a strategic attacker.Risk Analysis, 33(6), 1083-1099.

White, R. (2014). Towards a unified homeland security strategy: Anasset vulnerability model. Affairs, 10.