International Security & Defense

524 Items

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Mark Milley speaks about military operations during the daily White House coronavirus press briefing flanked by Attorney General William Barr (L) and Defense Secretary Mark Esper April 1, 2020 in Washington, DC

Win McNamee | Getty Images

Analysis & Opinions - CNBC

Op-ed: The coronavirus pandemic should change the way we look at national security

| May 28, 2020

The pandemic has pulled the future forward, forcing a changed perspective of national security, and now we must quickly adapt how we operate to reflect this reality, writes former Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence Sue Gordon.

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Paper

Closing Critical Gaps that Hinder Homeland Security Technology Innovation

| Apr. 23, 2020

Rapid technological advances are making nonstate actors much more capable than they were even a decade ago. Malicious actors like terrorist groups, criminal organizations, and state proxies are increasingly able to threaten American civilians and their interests around the world. At the same time, we are increasingly vulnerable to the emergence of new disease and natural disasters, as vividly shown by the hurricanes of 2017 (Harvey, Irma, and Maria) and the COVID-19 pandemic.

Effectively countering these threats, including by developing and supporting private sector-generated new technological solutions, is a core government responsibility. DHS is the U.S. government’s primary civilian public safety agency and the main source of government funding for nonmilitary development of public safety technologies. Unfortunately, DHS has a poor record of developing new technological solutions to advance its mission and address emerging threats. This article assesses the current situation, identifies lines of research that are urgently needed, and makes recommendations on how DHS can more effectively partner with industry and how new technologies can be quickly seeded.

President Donald Trump speaks about the coronavirus in the Rose Garden of the White House, Wednesday, April 15, 2020, in Washington. 

AP Photo/Alex Brandon

Analysis & Opinions - The New York Times

Will Pandemic Make Trump Rethink National Security?

| Apr. 15, 2020

President Trump insists that choosing when to reopen the economy is “the biggest decision I’ve ever had to make,” and, in the short term, he is undoubtedly right. It is a perilous balance of public safety versus economic revival that would test any president, even one not consumed by a looming election.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) seal is seen during a news conference with acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan in Washington, Friday, June 28, 2019.

AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

Analysis & Opinions - The Hill

Congress Needs Bipartisan Commission to Fix Homeland Security

| Feb. 07, 2020

The House of Representatives recently held a hearing concerning continued poor workforce morale at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). As important as workforce morale is, the problem at DHS is a symptom, not a cause. The big issue plaguing DHS is that the department is essentially broken.

Security Line at an Airport

ahlynk/Flickr

Analysis & Opinions - The Atlantic

The Recurring Folly of ‘If You See Something, Say Something’

| Jan. 06, 2020

Bill de Blasio warned New Yorkers on Friday that their city might be subject to retaliatory attacks from Iran. “I’m not saying this to be alarmist,” the mayor said as he and his underlings ticked off—in a slightly alarming fashion—a series of defensive measures the city might take after the American air strike that killed the Iranian general Qassem Soleimani. Though the New York Police Department had received no specific, credible threats, de Blasio and other officials warned of more bag checks at the subways and increased police presence throughout the city. The city is no stranger to terrorism and would maintain a better-safe-than-sorry posture. “If you see something, say something,” de Blasio said.

Recent talk of homeland threats, and the just-in-case operational response, are based on nothing more than the rather uncontroversial assessment that Iran will feel obliged to do something to respond to the killing of Soleimani. The homeland-security practices to which Americans became accustomed after 9/11 long ago became a bad habit—one more divorced than ever before from the kinds of threats the United States might actually face. Intended to calm the public, gestures like the ones de Blasio described presume that Iran would be both reckless and capable enough to target an American city—and that greater vigilance alone would prepare us for that possibility. Now nearly two decades old, the post-9/11 style of security theater also risks masking the real vulnerabilities in the American homeland against a potential Iranian action.

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Journal Article

Lines, Flows and Transnational Crime: Toward a Revised Approach to Countering the Underworld of Globalization

| Dec. 16, 2019

In this article, we develop a new framework for combating transnational criminal activity. We argue that global illicit flows, perpetrated by organized crime, in the interstices of lawful trade and travel, embody a critical and debilitating non-state security threat in today’s world, one that the Westphalian international system of sovereign states remains ill-equipped to confront. Accordingly, we seek to generate a wider discussion in the field regarding a revised approach to this threat that is situated within a global framework of collaborative law enforcement which incorporates, in appropriate fashion, certain military and counter-terrorist strategies.

The propositions we advance in support of a revised approach to countering transnational crime and its globalized web-enabled criminals include: (a) terrorism is one species of transnational crime; (b) the criminal justice model of arrest, prosecution, conviction and incarceration is a partial and insufficient response to transnational crime; (c) national security and law enforcement functions should be viewed analytically as a “public security” continuum rather than disciplines separated by bright lines; (d) countering transnational criminal organizations effectively may require development of a hybrid law enforcement/military capacity and new strategic and tactical doctrines, including safeguards against abuse, to govern its deployment; (e) joint border management within nations and between them, coordinated with the private sector, is required and inter-agency cooperation and multilateral institutions must be strengthened in accordance with new international norms and (f) North America, a region construed as extending from Colombia to the Arctic and from Bermuda to Hawaii, could develop in the future, together with the European Union, as an initial site for a model pilot of the new approach.