Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

October 25, 2013

Friday Free Forum

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Philip J. Palin on October 25, 2013

On this date in 2012 Sandy plowed across Southeastern Cuba as a CAT-3 hurricane. She would later come ashore in the Northeast United States as a serious subtropical storm. Over the hurricane’s entire track more than 140 deaths were tied directly to the storm, another 138 deaths were indirectly related. Estimated financial losses exceeded $68 billion.

On October 24, 1960 at least 100 were killed by the premature ignition of an ICBM test rocket at the Bainkonur Test Range in the then Soviet Union.

On this date in 2009 155 people were killed and more than 720 were injured in a double car bombing in Baghdad, Iraq.

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Comment by William R. Cumming

October 25, 2013 @ 8:10 am

Did the WH announcement on Mr. Johnson state it was an intent to nominate or that it had submitted Mr. Johnson’s name to the Senate as the DHS nominee?

Has the nomination left the WH?

Comment by William R. Cumming

October 25, 2013 @ 8:19 am

A new book has appeared on goof-ups by the Nuclear Priesthood in the USA and safety and security breaches and accidents. Apparently well documented!

What is also well documented is that in excess of One Trillion Dollars is currently needed to clean-up environmental contamination from the USA atomic/nuclear bomb production and maintenance complex.

Apparently no one political appointee currently in DHS has a grip on the WMD mission of DHS!

Comment by William R. Cumming

October 25, 2013 @ 8:33 am

Perhaps some background relating to earlier comments on this FFF and previously would be helpful!

I consider myself BTW as part of the nuclear priesthood with all the baggage that carries.

In many departments and agencies political appointees, even the leadership, is not cleared for all the classified programs, functions, or activities of that agency or department.




Yet I am sure that many that need to know the accuracy of my statements do not know that is so!

Comment by John Comiskey

October 25, 2013 @ 4:31 pm


Though NY’s Staten Island is likely one of many, I thought it would be appropriate here: see


Comment by Rose

October 25, 2013 @ 6:15 pm

I am a senior at Liberty University studying Homeland Security. I was directed to this site by one of your colleague’s who indicated the smartest people in HLS post to HLS Watch. My current assignment requires me to interview HLS participants and ask the following questions:

1. What are the pressing issues within HLS?

2. What are the most significant barriers to addressing those issues?

3. What factors most hinder the HLS practitioner?

4. What changes would make the HLS practitioner’s job easier/more efficient?

5. What do you see as the future of HLS?

Thank you!

Comment by William R. Cumming

October 25, 2013 @ 6:17 pm

Thanks John! Dead On!

Comment by JCOMISKEY

October 25, 2013 @ 7:58 pm


I believe I know your colleague.

IMHO, the answer to question number #1 is identifying what HLS is.

The following commentary by former Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano draws some light on an ongoing debate about what HLS is:

On February 26, 2013, former Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano was asked if the Congressional Research Service’s finding that there was no consistent federal definition of homeland security (Reese, 2013) mattered?

Napolitano (2013) said that it would be “nice, but it doesn’t matter in practice.” (p. 25) The Secretary was not aware of the finding and her day-to-day work had not been affected. In practice, homeland security was about agility, prevention, protection, and the ability to innovate. Napolitano identified the then upcoming tenth anniversary of DHS and the fundamental shifts the nation had undertaken to secure the homeland. DHS had undergone three phases in that time: DHS 1.0, DHS, 2.0, and DHS 3.0.

DHS 1.0 was the foundation for what was to come. DHS 2.0 involved the development and advancement of government, law enforcement, first responders, the private sector, and the public at every level. DHS 3.0 was predicated on the principles of agility, resilience, engagement, and integration and the notion that we live in a world of evolving threats. The nation can no longer be simply reactive or isolated. We must strengthen our nation’s capabilities to prepare for, respond to, and recover from threats and hazards of all sizes, whether from Mother Nature or those seeking to do us hard. DHS must also do more to inform and engage the public in its shared responsibility for our safety and security. It was time for HLS 3.0.

see: Reese’s (2010) definitions of HLS and DOD’s (2007) definition of HLS.

I will jump to question #5.

IMHO, the future of HLS will be three fold:
1. Cyber security
2. Greater emphasis on EM and especially Donahue et al’s (2010) all needs approach to EM
3. Environmental security. See Kiltz and Ramsay (2010) See also climate change.

Hope this helps.


Donahue, D.et al.(2013).The All Needs Approach to Emergency Response.” Homeland Security Affairs 8(1). Retrieved from

Kiltz,L. & Ramsay, J.(2012).Perceptual Framing of Homeland Security. Homeland Security Affairs 8(16). Retrieved from

Napolitano, J. (2013). The state of homeland security address with Secretary Janet Napolitano. Brooking Institute Symposium Elaine Kamarck (moderator). Retrieved from http://www.brookings.edu/~/media/events/2013/2/26%20napolitano/20130226_homeland _security_napolitano_transcript

Reese, S. (2013). Defining homeland security: Analysis and congressional consideration, Congressional Research Service. (CRS Publication No.R42462). Retrieved from http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/homesec/R42462.pdf

Comment by JCOMISKEY

October 25, 2013 @ 7:59 pm

omitted reference

U.S. Department of Defense. (2007). Joint publication 3-28: Civil Support. Retrieved from http://www.fas.org/irp/doddir/dod/jp3-28.pdf

Comment by William R. Cumming

October 26, 2013 @ 5:09 am

Thanks again John!

Note in particular Appendix A Para. c!

DoD likes FEMA because FEMA always pays including the outrageous overhead rates DoD charges sometimes as high as 200%!

Comment by William R. Cumming

October 26, 2013 @ 5:31 am

Quick and dirty answers to ROSE! Good questions IMO!

Q1? Departmental management!

Q2? WH and Congress!

Q3? Official Secrecy and opaqueness of DHS programs. functions. and activities!

Comment by William R. Cumming

October 26, 2013 @ 5:38 am


Q4? A clear chain of command in your organization.

Provision of training opportunties!

Q5? HLS will continue as a key governmental mission as long as there are nation-states!

Comment by William R. Cumming

October 26, 2013 @ 7:37 am

John! Who in DHS is most expert on DHS 3.0? Organizationally speaking not specific individuals? And best documentation of 3.0?

Comment by Philip J. Palin

October 26, 2013 @ 8:20 am


I am inspired by your reference to “pressing issues.”

It seems to me that homeland security is especially pressed — squeezed, perhaps even oppressed — by its tight connections with national security, on one side, and public safety, public health, emergency management and more on the other side.

What value does homeland security deliver that differentiates it from these preexisting domains and professions?

If — already when — homeland security cannot demonstrate this value, I perceive it is effectively shoved aside.

I have other obligations this morning, but sometime soon I will try to give attention to your follow-on questions.

Comment by Rose Morian

October 26, 2013 @ 9:19 am

JCOMISKEY, William, and Philip,

Thank you all so much for your responses to my questions and sharing your expertise with me! You have provided great info! I look forward to reading the future comments and learning more!


Comment by William R. Cumming

October 28, 2013 @ 8:35 am

Reference DHS departmental management:


These are the people that will be handling the “big ones” arriving in 2014!

Comment by William R. Cumming

October 28, 2013 @ 10:19 am

A new Executive Order EO 13269 appears in the November 2nd FR!

Available now on PPP [published Presidential papers site}!

I have yet to find evidence of transmittal to the Senate of Mr. Johnson’s nomination to the Secretary DHS!

Comment by William R. Cumming

October 30, 2013 @ 8:31 am

Legislation impacting DHS, TSA, and FEMA voted out of House Committee on T&I!

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