The Guardian

The Source for Antiterrorism Information

Last issue, I posed the question on whether it is time for The Guardian to change formats. As DOD becomes committed to an all-hazards approach to force protection, this magazine will change as well. Past articles on pandemic influenza and a current article about counter-intelligence highlight this change. Your submissions detailing this approach, as well as the traditional force protection issues, are strongly encouraged and always welcome.
The Deputy Directorate for Antiterrorism and Homeland Defense continues to work hard to protect our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, and Marines from the dangers of terror attacks. We also endeavor to maximize the military response to a domestic Chemical, Biological, Radiation, Nuclear, or high-yield Explosive (CBRNE) attack. Yet, the National Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD) strategy has several gaps, seams, and shortfalls. Specifically, current DOD DOTMLPF for Consequence Management (CM) needs additional emphasis. Unless the Department makes a major shift in policy direction, we may not be prepared to meet our national requirements in a crisis. The Joint Staff is also dedicated to providing immediate assistance to victims of natural disasters, such as hurricanes and earthquakes. As you can see, the DOD does not just focus on Iraq and Afghanistan, but also on protecting our citizens at home and abroad and planning for all contingencies to ensure a rapid, effective response to save lives and protect property.

Our forces engaging the enemy in Iraq and Afghanistan continue to be assaulted by insurgents and jihadists. In the midst of establishing better governance for Iraqis and Afghanis, our efforts are distracted by IEDs, sniper fire, and indirect fire from those who seek to thwart our success. We hope the ideas and material solutions presented in this magazine and others gain traction, or at least foster debate, to best protect our troops.

I encourage all of you to broaden your knowledge base concerning the terrorist threat. There are many good books, such as The Looming Tower and A Peace to End All Peace, detailing al Qaeda, Islamic extremism, and insurgencies, to name a few good topics. The United States has been involved in the Middle East since the birth of our nation with our conflict with the Barbary Pirates. Our strategic interests continue to lie in that region, and a better educated military can help to provide a better strategy to reach our desired end state. To effect a broader Middle East peace, DOD’s achievement in the Global War on Terror must realize successes against both Islamic extremist insurgencies and horrific terror attacks. As we approach the sixth observance of September 11, we must take pride in our successes without becoming complacent and recommit to learning the lessons from our  “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance.”—Thomas Jefferson

 

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