Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

September 20, 2013

Friday Free Forum

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Philip J. Palin on September 20, 2013

Kamakura buddha

On this date in 1498 an offshore earthquake spawned a tsunami that killed an estimated 25 to 30 thousand Japanese.  Damage included sweeping away the temple that housed the Great Buddha at Kamakura (above).

On this date in 2008 a truck bomb exploded outside the Marriott Hotel in Islamabad, Pakistan killing 54 and injuring more than 250.

On this date in 2010 the Macondo 252 Deepwater Horizon well was declared officially dead, after 153 days and 5 million gallons of raw oil spewed into the Gulf of Mexico.

What’s on your mind related to homeland security?

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Comment by William R. Cumming

September 20, 2013 @ 8:10 am

What is the MYTHOLOGY of HS?

Myths are important to all humans and especially to their organizations. So perhaps a brief review of the top ten [10] myths operating in HS might be useful as we await the arrival of a new Secretary DHS and Deputy DHS. So here are my top 10 IMO of course:

(1) The Department of Homeland Security has 252,000 employees.

(2) The Department of Homeland Security is NOT a criminal law enforcement organization.

(3) The Department of Homeland Security encourages its employees’ collaboration and cooperation with other departments and agencies that are involved in Homeland Security.

(4) The Department of Homeland Security is NOT a second career agency.

(5) The Department of Homeland Security is an ALL-HAZARDS organization.

(6) The Department of Homeland Security understands and has documented the roles of the STATES and their local governments in Homeland Security.

(7) There is an effective crisis management chain of command in the Department of Homeland Security.

(8) The policy formulation and implantation in the Department of Homeland Security full utilizes the skills and competencies of the almost 1000 personnel with the word “policy” in their position descriptions.

(9) The field personnel in the Department of Homeland Security have clearly understood roles and responsibilities.

(10) The five major training centers in DHS provide an integrated and seamless training system for those involved in HS at all levels of government and the private sector and NGO’s.

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 20, 2013 @ 8:13 am

Perhaps I should have pointed out that NO repeat NO Congressional oversight has ever occurred on the topics of my listed myths in the earlier comment.

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 20, 2013 @ 8:31 am

There is a relatively clear understanding IMO of how military doctrine is produced in DoD. What is the system, if any, for producing HS doctrine in DHS? Or subordinate components?

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 20, 2013 @ 9:07 am

Which, if any, of the DHS components qualifies as an HRO [highly reliable organization]? Any documentation?

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 20, 2013 @ 11:10 am


Phil’s post reporting on the death of Jock Menzies drew many comments as one might expect of what I am sure was a remarkable man and well lived life. My comments and questions on ALAN were followed by a phone call from a person I failed to write down. She represented that she would call the following week and try and help me understand that organization and its utilization by FEMA. I never received the follow up call but am still interested in finding out the capabilities and funding of ALAN.

If you are able to provide such information I would welcome that info.

And I believe the announcement of Jock’s untimely death on this blog was followed by the most comments ever on a single post. I find that outpouring of significance.

Comment by Philip J. Palin

September 20, 2013 @ 1:22 pm


The words myth and mythology have a range of meanings depending on context and the discipline involved.

Above I perceive you see mythology as something believed (or claimed) that is factually untrue. I expect most would agree that DHS cannot claim any of the elements on your list without considerable footnotes and asterisks.

But sometimes mythology involves a set of beliefs that — true or untrue — represent a culture’s attempt to make meaning around mysterious or difficult circumstances. Myths are often aspirational.

I like your list. I wonder if your list might fit both of these definitions?

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 20, 2013 @ 10:00 pm

Definitely Phil!

Comment by Jehu

September 21, 2013 @ 9:45 pm

I too would be interested in understanding how DHS produces doctrine. I would suppose the ‘Office of Training, Exercise, and Doctrine’ is responsible, but it’s all rather opaque.

Comment by Christopher Tingus

September 22, 2013 @ 6:08 am

Friday Free Forum: Homeland Security: A Once Grand Republic In Jeopardy….

In the words of Adm (Ace) Lyons:

The credibility of our military forces has also suffered by making our military, particularly ground forces, adhere to restricted rules of engagement in the failed hope of winning the hearts and minds of tribal Muslim societies. This policy has costs thousands of lives and many more permanent injuries. Further, it has given a distinct advantage to our enemies, who are well familiar with the rules to which our forces must adhere. These forces are our national treasure and cannot be wasted implementing some academic exercise.

Other factors have adversely affected our military forces’ credibility and fighting spirit:

Forcing our military to embrace Islam’s seventh-century culture, customs and legal system goes against everything our forces have been taught. For example, if an Afghan beats a woman or sodomizes a young boy, our forces are told not to interfere and look the other way. Is this what we are asking our national treasure to sacrifice their lives for? I don’t think so. We as a nation are better than that. Why are we forcing our military forces to compromise their values?
Military training manuals (and trainers) have been purged of any material that links acts of terrorism with Islam.

Diversity has become the No. 1 priority for our military forces instead of the proven principle of “professionalism.” Why erode the moral fiber of the finest military forces in the world by making them embrace the homosexual agenda?
Restrictions have been removed on women serving in combat.

The bottom line is that none of these social-engineering changes have improved combat readiness or our military credibility and unit integrity. Unless changed, our overall effectiveness will be severely diminished. Is that the objective?

While every other nuclear power is modernizing its strategic nuclear forces, Mr. Obama is forcing further drastic cuts on our strategic and theater nuclear forces, thereby jeopardizing our national security.

The current direction of our military forces requires an immediate course correction. A similar situation occurred in 1949, when Harry Truman’s Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson was planning to eliminate the Navy’s carriers and the Marine Corps. There was a “Revolt of the Admirals” to preserve our Navy’s carrier strike forces. Their success paid large dividends during the Korean War.


Christopher Tingus writes: no matter who is “entrusted” to serve in public service, when it is apparent that a nation is being held hostage to the narrow perspective and self-serving agenda of those elected, Congress on both sides of the aisle are obligated by oath to hold any and all accountable for such outright malfeasance!

Barry Obama and Ms. Hillary should not only be under House arrest for suspicion in breach of faith, treason in their standing shoulder to shoulder in blatant lie and their willingness to leave our brave Patriots behind at a lock and key State facility where Barry Obama intentionally dismissed security months prior despite urgings by competent intel folks to the contrary….

Barry Obama’s pledge to Hussein Obama and his Kenyan pals, anti-Christians and anti-colonialists and the intent in weakening America in every way must be thwarted as time is running out and the Germans and Tehran will clash and it will bring far too much disharmony and anguish to so, so many who are oppressed and can only see a weakened America w/its beacon of hope now only flickering and little hope remaining for peaceful coexistence as corruption and War become quite apparent….

God Bless America!

Christopher Tingus
“Main Street USA”

Comment by Christopher Tingus

September 22, 2013 @ 7:18 am

Friday Free Forum:


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