Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

March 1, 2006

Happy Birthday DHS!

Filed under: DHS News — by Christian Beckner on March 1, 2006

The key operational entities within DHS were transferred to the new Department three years ago today on March 1, 2003. Which means that DHS has now been in existence for more than twice as long as the period of time between 9/11 and its creation.

The Department has made substantial progress in the past year in a number of areas – increasing risk-based grants, strengthening intelligence, building up nuclear and biological detection capabilities, and completing a number of key objectives from DHS’s first two years. But’s it’s also unquestionably had serious bouts of the “terrible twos”, most notably the DHS response to Hurricane Katrina (with the exception of the Coast Guard). Hopefully this coming year will bring rapid progress on many of DHS’s key near-term challenges – disaster response, border security, chemical plant security, etc. – and also see steady efforts to strengthen core capabilities consistent with a long-term vision for the Department. Our security demands no less.

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Comment by William R. Cumming

March 1, 2006 @ 4:44 am

How many reorganizations, realignments, restructurings in that 3 years announced or accomplished?


Comment by Trampled

March 2, 2006 @ 3:07 pm

My last year in DHS has been total misery. This agency is totally broken and I fear cannot be repaired. There are far too many dogs running around pissing on the furniture marking their territory to get any work done. This is a caste system run by incompetents. Thank goodness we have a marginal intelligence arrangement and a vigilant defense agency to keep the homeland secure because DHS is not securing the homeland.


Comment by Jesus Rodrigues

March 23, 2006 @ 1:02 pm

I agree with Trampled..DHS is ineffective. They should put the other agencies back to where they belong. The Legacy Customs and CBP as well as Secret Service under Treasury. The Legacy INS with Justice and merge them with the FBI since the 9/11 commission recommend they beef up they’re agents to what they are right now, 12,000 nationwide. The FBI now has the statutory authority to investigate/enforce Title 8, Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Merging INS with the FBI would help the FBI on its primary mission of preventing, detecting, and combating terrorism. FBI will have the know how and the infrastructure to enforce the INA. FEMA should be its own agency like before so it would be effective again like before. FEMA does not have to deal with bureaucracies including budgetary issues in times of crises. DHS should only be the distribution center/clearing house of intelligence data from all government agencies. DHS and the Directorate of Intelligence should be combined into one. It was intelligence failure and lack thereof that were to blame for 9/11 so why don’t we address this problem? In the meantime, we are losing our War on Drugs, Arms, Counterfeiting, Human Trafficking, Money Laundering, and Terrorism. Let’s focus. Let’s not be divided and be conquered.

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