The New York Times scooped its competition reporting Dr. Thomas Frieden, New York City’s health commissioner, will be nominated by President Barack Obama as director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“Health investigators are trying to figure out why swine flu has spread erratically — moving quickly through a few schools but slowly elsewhere — after an outbreak closed three more New York schools. The decision on Thursday to shutter the schools follows an outbreak that left an assistant principal in critical condition and sent hundreds of kids home with flu symptoms, in a flare-up of the virus that sent shock waves through the world last month,” reports the Associated Press.
WHO has moved quickly to debunk the suggestion that H1N1 is the result of a “laboratory escape,” the New York Times is reporting. To read the full WHO statement on this matter, please access a transcript of the May 14 media briefing. The explanation begins on the bottom of page 1 and continues onto page 2. The WHO has also produced a helpful review of current indicators of H1N1′s severity.
As aggressive military operations continue and the refugee count approaches 1 million, some cracks are appearing in the Pakistani national consensus regarding tough action against the Taliban. DAWN reports that, the leader of a current coalition party has said beginning military operations in Swat “was a mistake.”
As reported here yesterday by Jessica Herrera-Flanigan, the White House has formally announced its decision to preserve FEMA’s place in the Department of Homeland Security. But a Thursday House hearing to make the case for an independent FEMA went ahead. The Committee’s Summary of Subject Matter is available online. The prepared testimony of five witnesses can also be accessed through the Committee’s website.
Please scroll down for detailed coverage of four DHS budget-related hearings on Tuesday and Wednesday. A transcript of the Secretary’s oral summary for the House Homeland Security Committee is worth a glance. The Secretary’s five strategic priorities are being repeated and repeated and repeated…
Thursday Secretary Napolitano made her first visit to USNORTHCOM’s headquarters in Colorado Springs. The local newspaper’s coverage suggests the Secretary’s recent performance as Principal Federal Official for H1N1 response has reminded some of Catherine the Great. “The nation’s czar of defense against terrorist attacks and responses to natural disasters had her first peek Thursday at the nation’s nerve center for homeland security. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano visited Northern Command and the North American Aerospace Defense Command headquarters at Peterson Air Force Base,” reports the Colorado Springs Gazette. Here’s hoping Gen. Renuart never reminds anyone of Prince Potemkin.
The 2009 Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission is now making available uncorrected transcripts of the hearings. Transcripts for the first five days are now online.
Today, May 15, is the first day of Pacific Hurricane Season which runs through November 30. The Atlantic season opens on June 1.
A new issue of the Jounal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management is available online.