Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

June 5, 2009

Four Friday morning briefs

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Philip J. Palin on June 5, 2009

Later this morning Secretary Napolitano will meet with the new Homeland Security Advisory Council in Albuquerque (10:00 mountain).  The PSD-1 recommendations include “enhancing” the role and influence of advisory councils as a way of better ensuring the involvement of State, local, tribal, and private-sector leaders in policy-making.  You can follow the meeting via a new social media tool being deployed by DHS at http://www.ustream.tv/channel/nmspirg-hsac

Yesterday the Associated Press reported, “The Obama administration’s pick for a top intelligence post at the Homeland Security Department has ties to the CIA’s harsh interrogation program, a congressional aide said. This could become an issue during Philip Mudd’s confirmation hearing, which is expected next week. Mudd was nominated to be under secretary of intelligence and analysis at Homeland Security.”

While yours truly, in particular, has been obsessing about resilience, other issues relevant to Homeland Security have certainly been popping.  In Case of Emergency, Read Blog is a good complement to HLSwatch.  This week the coverage there includes an exclusive look at Mike Chertoff’s new book.

Among  several other matters not covered since May 26 is the nomination hearing of Rand Beers as DHS Under Secretary for National Preparedness and Protection.  I appreciate William R. Cumming asking about it.  The hearing was conducted on June 2.  The Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs has an archived video of the 105 minute hearing. Prepared statements and testimony are also available for review. Chairman Lieberman gave notice that his priorities for the NPPD include, cybersecurity, critical infrastructure, target hardening, visa policy and enforcement, and chemical security.  I heard — or recognized — no surprises in the testimony or inquiries.  Toward the middle of the hearing, Mr. Beers explained that, without a statutory reorganization, he will — when confirmed — be “in charge” of all DHS cybersecurity operations, as has been reported elsewhere.

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2 Comments »

Comment by William R. Cumming

June 5, 2009 @ 7:10 am

Interesting on how the CIA retirees all seem to need further employment opportunities after completing their CIA careers. Worn out and exhausted by their strenous careers at the CIA or just want to keep on the gravy train?

What do they actually bring to Homeland Security? Technically since CIA charter from the beginning prohibits gathering of domestic intel, should bring almost nothing? And did foreign intel shine over the years at CIA on the “big ones”? Still many hard working and competent people there but the 20 years and out retirement does appear to need substantial revisiting because not all that many stars on the wall at Langley given the passage of time.

Comment by William R. Cumming

June 5, 2009 @ 3:28 pm

Okay looks like Rand Beers is a shoe-in for his position! Do we know the budget and staffing under his portfolio for cyber security? How about the rest of DHS?

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