Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

September 12, 2014

Friday Free Forum

Filed under: General Homeland Security — by Philip J. Palin on September 12, 2014

On this date in 1988 Hurricane Gilbert came ashore on Jamaica with a 19 foot storm surge and over thirty-inches of rain.  At least 49 were killed.  Damages were in the billions of dollars.

On this date in 2008 a freight train and a commuter train collided head-on in the Chatworth section of Los Angeles.  Twenty-five were killed and over 100 injured.

On this date in 2001 President George W. Bush briefly — and in part –addressed the American people:

The deliberate and deadly attacks, which were carried out yesterday against our country, were more than acts of terror. They were acts of war.

This will require our country to unite in steadfast determination and resolve. Freedom and democracy are under attack. The American people need to know we’re facing a different enemy than we have ever faced.

This enemy hides in shadows and has no regard for human life. This is an enemy who preys on innocent and unsuspecting people, then runs for cover, but it won’t be able to run for cover forever. This is an enemy that tries to hide, but it won’t be able to hide forever. This is an enemy that thinks its harbors are safe, but they won’t be safe forever. This enemy attacked not just our people but all freedom-loving people everywhere in the world.

The United States of America will use all our resources to conquer this enemy. We will rally the world. We will be patient. We’ll be focused, and we will be steadfast in our determination. This battle will take time and resolve, but make no mistake about it, we will win… This will be a monumental struggle of good versus evil, but good will prevail. 

What’s on your mind related to homeland security?

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Comment by E. Earhart

September 12, 2014 @ 4:59 am

Phil Zimbardo’s definition of evil:

“Evil consists in intentionally behaving in ways that harm, abuse, demean, dehumanize, or destroy innocent others- or using one’s authority and systemic power to encourage or permit others to do so on you behalf.”

But we are called to act, as best we can, against sources of evil? If this is true in Raqqa, is it true in Rockford? If it is true in Mosul, is it true in Memphis? Absolutely!

Zimbardo’s definition acknowledges that what separates good and evil is not religion, politics or culture. His lifetime study of Evil warns us that good and evil resides in each and every one of us.

This is important in the task at hand; it would be easy if there existed people who were only evil; we would simply eliminate them; but that is not the case.

Reading President Bush and President Obama, I do believe what they are beginning to understand is that Evil/Terror is the goal. Not just a means, but the end, a state of terror where people have no choice, no options.

Phil Bobbitt finds severe fault in the thinking that there can be no such thing as a war on terror where terror is the end game.

He warned that al Qaeda is a rather primitive prototype of terrorism to come.

I believe that ISIS is the first/prime example of Market State Terrorism 2.0

Bobbitt writes that:

“Market state terrorism ‘neither relies on the support of sovereign states nor is constrained by the limits on violence that state sponsors have observed themselves or placed on their proxies,’ and as a result it is horrifyingly more violent. Its undiscriminating violence against civilians, however, is not indiscriminate; it is calculated and carefully prepared. It is transnational, borderless, and prosecuted by virtual states (like al Qaeda) or by non-state actors [ISIS] sheltering in weak states.”

And further writes:

that market state terrorism: is more lethal; much better financed; evade attempts to suppress them and enhance their power through the adroit use of modern communications technology/internet; is more theatrical, producing vivid dramas for the global network connected by the internet and world-wide web; more likely to seek weapons of mass destruction, and should they get them, far more likely to use them; and finally market state terrorism is no longer simply a technique, but it is an end itself.

Comment by Christopher Tingus

September 12, 2014 @ 6:05 am

Friday HLSWatch free forum:

Seismic gap may be filled by an earthquake near Istanbul adding further instability to the Middle East and further anguish for many innocents, the real possibility of substantial earthquake to Istanbul and region….and our US preparations now for an expeditious response.

Given our valued and proven resources and especially numerous assets in the region, we should begin preparation to ready ourselves to come to the immediate aid of Turkey and many of its good People in the event such tragic seismic event does take place with emphasis that our beloved US Flag is in full view and stamped on every item, the same flag so many seem to enjoy burning at rallies throughout the Middle East.

For most of us on “Main Street USA” we are fed up of the failure of this eight year WH resident and now to see John Kerry bowing before the Saudis who promote so many injustices and many of the people of the Middle East who kneel before God five times daily and then pick up a sword to behead an infidel, a word and description which by the way should be stricken from Islam and among Muslims….a Qur’an which supposedly promotes peace and co-existence with all including Hebrew brethren by the way….We live in the 21st century, not in the dark ages….ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!

We here in the US, our Christian-Judeo based nation are a melting pot of individuals, Jews, Christians, Arabs and many others who come to America – through a process of legal immigration – and aspire to achieve and become Americans who convey resilience and determination to enhance humanity in so many ways which is far contrary to the Muslim world whose silence is again quite evident recently when two Americans are beheaded as if we are in the Middle Ages and a bunch of ISIS thugs torture, rape and kill innocent human beings in witness of God, all children of the Lord.

Barry Obama, the illustrious student of Rev Wright who listened for twenty years to such nonsense that if the “Zionists” have WMD in hand, then Tehran must surely have same….

….and Barry Obama as a failed executive WH who bows before Islam at every opportunity and in every way and seems best suited to be Islam’s best pr agent rather than leader of the western world…yes, the many Muslims as a people who fail to promote within and among its populace and youth especially, the Respect for Life and for another seeking to promote differences rather than similarities in all of God’s children and understanding that while we are tolerant and do not impose Christianity on those choosing to follow Islam, this insistence that the world become Muslim, well, it has Not been so written and neither will Jerusalem or Israel be decimated for God will always protect both.

Christians, Hebrews (your brethren), Muslims, Hindus and everyone else are to live and work and play w/o interruption as well by the way, a two state, Israeli-Palestinian solution and an end to the waste of another generation of Palestinian youth who should have a book in hand encouraged to achieve and rid themselves of this generational stonewalls continuing hopelessness and such precious youth used as pawns, not tossing rocks and being taught to hate by those who use religion and spirituality for their own self-serving gain, but to gain knowledge no tyrant can take from them….All are children of God and we must Respect one another and seek to thwart the injustices so many suffer from those preferring to commit dastardly deed against another….

Surely We here in the US may have duped and so engrossed in the pigment of skin rather than actually considering the unimpressive CV of nothing more than a Chicago city street slicker and our beloved Republic weakened by this perverse and divisive leader of the “Chicago-Hollywood-Washington charade” as eight year resident of the WH and his reiterations of Islam and how wonderful it is when in fact, we see such brutality against women and children so rampant….the inherent preference to raise sword against another rather than to truly understand human nature and a reluctance of the community to take responsibility for such outrageousness.

….a US Congress on both sides of the aisle so invested in party politicizing and blatantly failing in fulfilling the oath and pledge to office and in the best interests of our nation “entrusted” by of each and every elected by our precious vote…..

….however not if, but when this earthquake pummels Istanbul, let’s not forget our many friends in Turkey who have worked with us to maintain stability as much as possible in the region despite the business of promoting hatred by so many.

It is time for a renewed and inspirational American national spirit among all Americans and for us all to hear the National Anthem played far more frequently on our radios and heard on television and in our retail stores and the uplifting pride in being American despite the WH and the illustrious AG and Michelle Obama who flies to Spain meeting (who?) rather than teaching their children about American history and visiting our Grand Canyon and other wonderful historical sites and those who work tireless to promote technology which so contributes to a better world for all….

….and for the DoD to promote such in every way so make sure good ol Glory is emblazoned on everything to remind all that it has been the US who has reached far across the lands to help those who are unfortunate in so many ways enslaved by the promotion of fear and terrorism which seems to be so much a part of Islamic doctrine and the outright silence of the community when such despicable acts in dastardly deed so adversely affect the innocent…..


Turkey and the possible site of an earthquake (white lines) that could strike beneath the Sea of Marmara.

NASA, and Christine Daniloff and Jose-Luis Olivares/MIT

Seismic gap may be filled by an earthquake near Istanbul

After tracking seismic shifts, researchers say a major quake may occur off the coast of Istanbul.

Jennifer Chu | MIT News Office
September 11, 2014

When a segment of a major fault line goes quiet, it can mean one of two things: The “seismic gap” may simply be inactive — the result of two tectonic plates placidly gliding past each other — or the segment may be a source of potential earthquakes, quietly building tension over decades until an inevitable seismic release.

Researchers from MIT and Turkey have found evidence for both types of behavior on different segments of the North Anatolian Fault — one of the most energetic earthquake zones in the world. The fault, similar in scale to California’s San Andreas Fault, stretches for about 745 miles across northern Turkey

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 12, 2014 @ 7:06 am

Clearly the “DEEP STATE” needs continuous warfare and now has it.

But in the meantime back to basics and first principles!

Are you surprised that the biggest beneficiary of the DHS establishment and reorganization is the Border Patrol, a para-military force that languished when housed in DoJ?

Are you surprised that the Congress and Executive Branch remain isolated and self-blinded in the realm of HS?

Are you surprised that the recent NAP earthquake has been declared a Major Presidential Disaster?

Are you surprised that DoD and the US Armed Forces have now been assigned the task of fighting “EVIL”?

Are you surprised that the President has no real STRATERGY for fighting IS?

Are you surprised that agencies and departments all have day jobs and are seldom not surprised by various unexpected events?

While I generally will be focusing on legislation on the time I remain a participant on this blog I hope to not be completely negative and will provide some examples in HS and EM by a number of different people and sources’

And thanks Double E for your comment on today’s post.

Only once in history has a Congressional Committee tried to research the Executive Branch’s role in EP [EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS} and I highly recommend this extract from a 1976 US Senate Committee:

•Senate Staff Report on Emergency Preparedness in the United States (excerpt), Senate Report 94-922, March 1976

It is posted on the FAS/FEMA page.

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 12, 2014 @ 7:11 am

Another Blast From the Past:

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Hidden Secrets of FEMA

Well this effort may not live up to expectations from the headline but here goes!
First, FEMA is a largely technophobic agency and refuses to provide much assistance to STATEs and their local governments on technology and communications issues. With two former FEMA Directors/Administrators speaking out on communications issues–specifically the auction of spectrum with opposing views one might ask for a FEMA position on the issue. None will be developed or submitted. In fact another dirty little secret is that few in FEMA, even in the Office of the Chief Counsel read the daily Federal Register and certainly seldom read federal register entries that might impact FEMA but are not published by FEMA. Even Presidential Executive Orders impacting FEMA are often dessiminated only by luck and seldom coherently discussed, implemented, and acted upon fully. Can they even read might be one question? Most are too busy to learn how their organization is being impacted by other parts of the federal government. Just in today’s Federal Register the OPM publication of a new proposed definition of “National Security Position” will drastically impact FEMA but probably no one will realize it until OPM reg is final and too late.

Second! The failure of FEMA to view EM as a multidisciplinary activity and usually those with expertise are not rewarded or even asked for their input on FEMA policy development, implementation and operations. Example, look at the skill sets in the very expensive to operate and fund FEMA policy section under David Kaufman.
What do some of these people bring to the table and what successes of FEMA are based on that groups input and operations. Even the programs seldom include farout (being facetious) disciplines like water resource expertise,medicine, statistics, sesimology, geology, anthropology, physcology, economics to FEMA program operations or policy development. Proof is lack of significant numbers if any of personnel with these backgrounds.

Third! FEMA has consistently failed to submit legislation that is technical in nature and that would fix or assist problems of administrative feasiblity or even legal conumdrums. Basically FEMA is not a respected organization for legislative referral from DHS and OMB legislative types and certainly not technical organizations like the Department of Justice. In otherwords, FEMA is willing to spend hard hard earned taxpayer dollars without much expertise. Another approach would be to have FEMA list all of National Academy of Science, National Research Council, etc. reports on its programs, functions, and activities since its formation in 1979. Another view would be to ask the other federal technical agencies for their views on FEMA’s contributions.

Fourth! Does FEMA truly believe in competition in procurement? Answer just look at FEMA contractors over the years and their “wins” for program contract support.

FIFTH! Does FEMA administer its programs, functions, and activities to make STATES and their local governments more resilient? NO and in fact FEMA administers most of its programs, functions, and activities in ways destructive to STATEs and their local government resilience and does so by its inadquate planning and evaluation of those efforts. The STATES and their local governments are seldom brought up short and to some degree FEMA is designed to cover up for STATES, and their local governments negiligence, even nonfeasance, and malfeasance.

SIXTH! Is FEMA an agency that respects legal niceties in its legal architecture? NO. Several reasons but chronis understaffing and underfunding of its legal support function is the key way. It has now broken up its litigation section and dispersed those lawyers to the direct support of the three divisions. This system is designed to politicize litigation and prohibit the training and skills necessary to support the most difficult and complex litigation. The litigation role of FEMA is in fact not independent but instead designed in reality to make sure that FEMA appointees and personnel understand that DOJ controls all FEMA litigation not the Chief Counsel. How many times has FEMA weighed in in writing on cases involving other departments and agencies with governmentwide impact. Not once since I retired in 1999 that I know of. And of course any case with identified government wide impact also impacts FEMA.

Seventh! Does FEMA its staff and appointees to develop their expertise through training and conferences and writing and teaching and thus forge national reputations in their fields, perhaps even international reputations? NO! This is viewed as not being loyal to FEMA management and policy.

Eight! Is the FIRE SERVICE a respected player and full member in the adminstration of FEMA programs, functions, or activities to the extent that profession might be considered useful? NO! Reason! The history of the FIRE SERVICE in FEMA and Washington not because they have nothing to offer. Example, has mitigation assitance ever been awarded for the fire hazard in the urban/wildland interface? Not to my knowledge. Climate change might really impact this issue.

NINE! The administration of overtime and comptime in FEMA has always been abused by the highest levels of FEMA and many of its DAE cadre. This waste is largely unpoliced and systems to police it are not in place.

Tenth! Why are so many FEMA people successful in other federal agencies when they depart from FEMA but were viewed as problem children in FEMA? Because basically FEMA has an authoritarian management style that is exactly what it does not need given its primary missions of collaboration and coopertaion intra-agency and inter-agency!

And of course this post is designed in the spirit that FEMA can do better. When personnel in FEMA wonder why other civil servants in other agencies have such a strong bias against FEMA they might start with the perception that FEMA always goes by the not-invented-here bias. Hey did you know some foreign countries are well ahead of FEMA on EM? Oh and did I mention that FEMA no longer has a library. Too many books in a library no doubt. Or maybe too many unread books. Having personnally given the FEMA library over $1000 worth of books (without deduction for taxes)that I thought were worth reading by all FEMA staff hoping that in breaking up the library they went somewhere useful.

Posted by The Vacation Lane Group at 2:43 PM

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 12, 2014 @ 7:32 am


Friday, December 3, 2010

Governance and Bureaucracy

Okay distilling a few findings from 34 years as a bureaucrat.
Validation by research outside of personal experience will be left to others. I majored in History [emphasis British Empire in W. Hemisphere] with minor in International Relations after almost 70 CH of hard science as Pre-MED! Had many political science and government courses also. How did I do this? Almost 200 CH in four years. Could have left a year early based on minimum standards but chose to delay to avoid being drafted. Delayed again of course for Law School but after abolition of all grad school deferment had to take a standardized test to stay in last year. Then of course complete abolition of grad deferments later.

So here are some lessons learned with examples that might support my conclusions. And always remember I am completely a creature of the federal executive branch or the US Army thus my limitations.

First! Bureaucrats do first what they like to do and hopefully that effort meets managements needs.

Second! Bureaucrats do what they have been trained, rewarded or culturated [sic] to do again hopefully meeting management’s needs.

Third: Bureaucrats are incapable of establishing priorities for managers. Unfortunately, managers often cannot establish priorities either. The In-Box test used to be an important factor in Executive selection. Prioritize the contents of a presented inbox.

Fourth: Bureaucrats would and do preferably interact with other bureaucrats or contractor support rather than the public or Congress or their OIG or GAO or OMB or OPM.

Fifth: Bureaucrats rarely share the vision of the task or mission of their managers. Again unfortunately, few federal appointees and managers share their vision with their subordinates.

Sixth: Bureaucrats have difficulty absorbing new technology and frequently need a kind and motivated and knowledgeable colleague or subordinate to show them how to utilize the new technology. The higher you are in the federal bureaucracy the less likely you are to be an early adopter. This even goes for the IT world.

Seventh: Any kind of innovation by a bureaucrat will be substantially rejected unless that bureaucrat can convince his/her superiors it was their (the superiors) idea. A colloary is that suggestions are rarely welcome from any subordinate.

Eight: When a manager or supervisor states on the record or off that “they” [the manager or supervisor] don’t like to be surprised they mean it. There is almost never a good surprise. So bureaucrats use the drip technique or the salami technique–surprises are revealed drip by drip or a slice at a time.

Ninth: Supervisors and managers almost never [even on pain of death] will reveal their position descriptions or performance evaluation ratings to subordinates.

Tenth: It is often easier to leave one job for another than attempt to reform a job previously performed to the satisfaction of management. Oddly this creates great opportunity since because of items 1-9 above this means any new job, task or mission has never been done before, is not seen as a priority or even possible and thus gives almost complete freedom to the person willing to take on that new job, mission, assignment. Perhaps it is the Briar Rabbit principle personified–“Please don’t throw me into that briar patch”!

Okay some examples. All FEMA based.

1. SAR {Search and Rescue]–almost violently opposed by the bureaucrats and the vision of a political appointee and some dedicated civil servants. Most were opposed. Including in a famous incident the effort of some very senior bureaucrats to try and terminate FEMA SAR efforts 6 weeks prior to Oklahoma Bombing in 1995. Yea of course this blog is self serving. So as mentioned before when I was asked by the appointee if he should get a legal opinion supporting the program I said no but did show him specific statutory authorization in FEMA’s legal authorities and mentioned and documented that in 1970 the federal civil defense effort had 200 FTE’s devoted nation-wide to SAR and its implementation. Good work appointee–appointee one, bureaucrats none. I orchestrated a brilliant and energetic young lawyer to help implement SAR [she was an all-American basketball player] to help and a very dedicated small staff led for years by a friend Mark Russo long gone from FEMA to HHS and a Presidential intern made this effort a force in disaster response. Mark remains to me an unsung hero and hope he is well and thriving wherever he is. A good example of the good being driven out by the bad in FEMA, or is the also another bureaucratic rule.

2. Community Mental Health services–in the Disaster Relief Act of 1974 authorization existed for FDAA, FEMA’s disaster predecessor in HUD to fund and operate community mental health activities post disaster. Unfortunately it called on NIMH at HHS to do this for FDAA. They had no interest. Unknowing to me as son of social worker I found this authority very interesting. What I did not know is that a legislative draftsman at HHS knowing of NIMH reluctance, and with my pushing from the FEMA end with others–got the legislation changed to allow any qualified mental health professional or organization to be mission assigned or act as sub-grantee to the state to do this. When I retired in FEMA this had become a $400M annual average program. Two former nuns, one now deceased were instrumental in this development.

3. Another example is LOGISTICS in FEMA. Oddly a largely punitive reassignment of a career SES led to FEMA having its first really dedicated and professional effort in logistics. Largely driven by post-Hurricane Andrew lesson’s learned that effort meagre though it was has started to pay off. Strangely, the transfer of a very skilled and dedicated civil servant who may still be in FEMA and was another gem–who for her sake I will only call Beverly–carried on after she was practically drummed out of SAR for doing a great job by those senior who hated SAR [and note the USFA was never much help in supporting SAR until long after it was successful] and the Logistics unit in FEMA really started to click. Logistics had been identified in FEMA and even by a President (Reagan in NSDD-47 [1982] as very important but hey even when the President commands does not mean it gets done. I think our current President now understands that takes a “grip” on the bureaucracy that he and his WH does not have. Listen to the LBJ tapes if you want to see a master at enforcement and making sure his orders were carried out the way he wanted. Really quite scary.

Well enough of this post for now but will return in time to this subject.

Posted by The Vacation Lane Group at 12:55 PM

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 12, 2014 @ 7:34 am


Comment by Quin

September 12, 2014 @ 1:48 pm


Keep them coming. Your comments are often the only way I can get background on what I’m working on!

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 12, 2014 @ 3:16 pm


Comment by Christopher Tingus

September 12, 2014 @ 3:22 pm

“Then whosoever heareth the sound of the trumpet, and taketh not warning; if the sword come, and take him away, his blood shall be upon his own head. He heard the sound of the trumpet, and took not warning; his blood shall be upon him. But he that taketh warning shall deliver his soul. But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman’s hand” Ezekiel 33:4-6

“When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man, thou shall surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand. Nevertheless, if thou warn the wicked of his way to turn from it; if he does not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou has delivered thy soul” Ezekiel 33:8-9

Comment by Christopher Tingus

September 12, 2014 @ 5:52 pm

in just one week the United Kingdom will cease to exist. The latest figures from YouGov show that 51 percent of Scots plan to vote “Yes” to independence, compared with 49 percent for “No.”

“On September 19, people over all Britain could wake up in a diminished country, one that doesn’t bestride the world stage but hobbles instead,” wrote the Spector’s politi- cal editor James Forsyth in an article a couple of months ago. “If Scotland votes to leave the United Kingdom, it would be Britain’s greatest ever defeat: the nation would have voted to abolish itself.”

Comment by Christopher Tingus

September 12, 2014 @ 5:57 pm

China, Russia to Build Giant Seaport….and soon enters the third alliance, India


China and Russia will build one of the largest ports in northeast Asia on Russia’s Sea of Japan coast, reports said, in a further sign of the power- houses’ growing alliance.

The seaport is expected to be able to handle some 60 million tonnes of cargo a year, China’s state-run People’s Daily Online reported late Wednesday—comparable to Britain’s
busiest port Immingham or Le Havre in France ….

The new facility will be located in far eastern Russia, just 18 kilometers (11 miles) away from the Chinese bor- der. The region is also close to North Korea.
Chinese and Russian leaders inked a deal on the port at May’s Confer- ence on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia (cica) in Shanghai, the report said. .

Comment by E. Earhart

September 12, 2014 @ 6:18 pm

Mr. Tingus,

I have been following the polls back and forth and as you reported, the Yes vote as of current polling holds a narrow lead. I hear that Germans with dual citizen ship are permitted to vote and are voting overwhelming Yes. Do you believe the final vote will be YES?

Mr. Cumming,

Previously, you had indicated you foresaw a Yes win, are you still tracking that view?

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 12, 2014 @ 7:32 pm

Yes Double E! Freedom for Scotland and hoping its banksters have to flee to England.

Comment by E. Earhart

September 13, 2014 @ 9:34 am

The Scots stand at the precipice of history. This would be 1776 without a round being fired/sword being brandished in centuries.

Despite the fear mongers, should they vote yes, they will be fine.

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 13, 2014 @ 9:39 am

Double E! Was the Act of Union 1707?

Another BFTP!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Section 2 of EO 12148

Let’s for a minute assume my position that EO 12148 which has been amended many times is no longer of operative legal effect because its underlying legal authority in Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1978 is no longer in effect. Clearly delegations of the Robert T. Stafford Act by Executive Order are appropriate and should be done in an entirely new Executive order. That stated what could be done to improve E.O. 12148 now?

Let’s look at possible language changes to critical section 2 of the order. Executive orders amending other sections of E.O.12148 are E.O.’s 12155,12156,12319,12356,12379,12381, 12673, and 13286.

TEXT OF Proposed Revisions to SECTION 2 OF

Section 2. Management of Emergency Planning and Assistance

Revison by VLG: Section 2. Establishment and Oversight of Federal Policies Enhancing National Resiliency in Event of Catastrophic Incidents or Events.

2-1. General.

As Revised by VLG:

2-101. Definition: National Resilience shall mean all federal policies, programs, functions and activities that support preparedness, planning, protection, prevention, mitigation, response and recovery in the context of catastrophic events, especially those that destroy governmental capability to accomplish reconsitution and restoration of governmental capabilities.

2-102. The Secretary of Homeland Security shall establish Federal policies for, and coordinate, all civil security and civil resilience policies for catastrophic events including preparedness, planning, protection, prevention, mitigation, response and recovery functions of Executive Branch departments and agencies.

2-103. The Secretary shall periodically review and evaluate the policies, programs, functions, and activities of the Executive Branch departments and agencies to determine their impact on national resilience. In order to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of those programs, functions, and activities the Secretary shall recommend to the President alternative methods of improving national resilience.

2-104. The Secretary shall represent the President in working with State and local governments and the private profit making and non-profit sectors to promote national resilience.

2-105. The Secretary shall provide an annual report to the President for subsequent transmittal to the Congress on issues of national resilience that the Secretary finds appropriate. This may also include the activities of independent federal regulatory entities that impact issues of national resilience. The report shall assess the current overall state of national resilience.

2-2. Implementation.

2-201. In executing the functions under this Order, the Secretary shall develop policies, programs, functions, and activities that to the extent possible provide that all efforts to promote national resilience by Executive Branch departments and agencies are:

(a) founded on the use of existing organizations, resources, and systems, and their programs, functions, and activities to the maximum extent practicable;

(b) integrated to the extent possible with organizations, resources, and programs of State and local governments, the private sector and volunteer organizations; and

2-202. Assignments by the Secretary of national resilience programs, functions, and activities shall, whenever possible, be based on extensions (under emergency conditions) of the missions, programs, functions, and activities of the Executive agencies.

2-203. To the extent authorized by law and within available resources, the Secretary of Defense shall provide the Secretary of Homeland Security with support for national resilience programs in the areas of program development and administration, technical support, research, communications, transportation, intelligence, and emergency operations.

2-206. All Executive agencies shall cooperate with and assist the Secretary in the performance of his/her functions.

So perhaps this version will never see the light of day officially but now at least the present and future administrations have a alternative choices. Determine that EO 12148 should be vacated or revised appropriately. One thing for sure its citation of the Federal Civil Defense Act of 1950 [Public Law 920 of the 81st Congress] is defective.

And just for the record I understand that close to 300 Executive Order recommended promulgations and/or revisions now under way in the Executive Branch. Under E.O. 11030, the Executive Order on Executive Orders almost any Executive Branch component can suggest or recommend a new or revised Executive Order. Hopefully at some point NARA will update and provide virtually the REAGAN ADMINISTRATION’s 1989 compendium of Extant Executive Orders and their specific language.

Posted by The Vacation Lane Group at 11:21 AM

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 13, 2014 @ 9:48 am

My long long ago in a GALAXY far, far, away prediction that only the US Coast Guard and FEMA will have offices at the former St. Elizabeth in S.E. Washington, S.E. of D.C. looking better and better.

This may well prompt 25% of FEMA permanent staff already eligible for retirement to retire.

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 14, 2014 @ 7:57 am

Presidential Directives

DHS | Homeland Security Presidential Directives
Homeland Security Presidential Directives issued by the President on matters pertaining to Homeland Security.

Presidential Decision Directives – PDD39
Subject: U.S. Policy on Counterterrorism
June 21, 1995

Presidential Decision Directives – PDD39
Subject: Security in Cyberspace
Senator Nunn’s Request for Copy of FEMA Abstract on PDD -39
March 8, 1996

Emergency Mobilization Preparednes
National Security Decision Directive
July 22, 1982

The list above contains documents that can be found on my blogs listed at http://www.vacationlanegrp.com on lefthand side of website.

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 14, 2014 @ 8:08 am

Key Statutes

Post-Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act of 2006
PUBLIC LAW 109–295—OCT. 4, 2006
Abstract 120 Stat 1394 – 120 Stat 1463

The Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act as amended, and Related Authorities
FEMA 592
June 2007

Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007
PUBLIC LAW 110–53—AUG. 3, 2007

Homeland Security Act of 2002
[As Amended Through P.L. 109–177, Enacted March 9, 2006]

The list above contains documents that can be found on my blogs listed at http://www.vacationlanegrp.com on lefthand side of website. A more recent version of the Stafford Act appears on the FAS/FEMA webpage at

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 14, 2014 @ 8:29 am

Baseline Documents

•FBI National Information Sharing Strategy
Foundation to shape and implement information sharing initiatives with the FBI’s many partners.
Publish Date: 2011

•National Disaster Recovery Framework (Draft)
February 5, 2010
Final expected in the next 90 days
•National Security Strategy
Concerns for the national security of the United States and how the administration plans to deal with them.
May 2010
•National Intelligence Strategy of the United States of America
Understanding of the counterterrorism challenge and the importance of the challenges we face in the cyber domain and from counter intelligence threats.
August 2009
•National Disaster Housing Strategy Released
Release Number: FNF-09-001
Release Date: January 2009
•Safe at Home
A National Security Strategy to Protect the American Homeland, the Real Central Front
This document calls for the reevaluation of homeland security policies, published by Center for American Progress.
February 2008

•The National Strategy For Homeland Security
Strategy to guide, organize, and unify our Nation’s homeland security efforts.
October 2007
•Strategy to Enhance International Supply Chain Security
The overall strategic structure in which United States cargo security programs.
July 2007
•National Strategy for Combating Terrorism
Strategy for combating terrorism, it has been both a battle of arms and a battle of ideas.
September 2006
•A National Strategy for Integrated Public Warning Policy and Capability
The goal of this report is to develop consensus on a national vision and specific goals for improving all-hazard warning systems at the Federal, state and local levels.
Published by Partnership for Public Warning
May 16, 2003
•The National Strategy for the Physical Protection of Critical Infrastructures and Key Assets
Strategy for protecting critical infrastructures and key assets from further terrorist exploitation.
February 2003
•The National Strategy to Secure Cyberspace
Framework for protecting cyberspace that is essential to our economy, security, and way of life.
February 2003

•National Drug Control Strategy
A strategy for reducing illicit drug use and its harmful consequences in America.
Published 2010
•National Research and Development Strategy for Microbial Forensic
National Science and Technology Council
Published 2009

•National Health Security Strategy of the United States of America
This strategy is intended to help galvanize efforts to minimize the health consequences associated with significant health incidents.
December 2009
•National Strategy for Countering Biological Threats
Vision for managing these evolving and complex risks.
November 2009
•National Strategy for Pandemic Influenza
Homeland Security approach to address the threat of pandemic influenza.
November 2005

II. Plans
•FEMA Nationwide Review Plan 2010
Fiscal Year 2010 Report to Congress
July 15, 2010

•Prevention of WMD Proliferation and Terrorism Report Card
An Assessment of the U.S. Government’s Progress.
January 2010
•Evaluating the Reliability of Emergency Response Systems for Large-Scale Incident Operations
RAND Homeland Security and Defense Center
Measuring the preparedness of emergency response systems.
Published 2010
•Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction: Looking Back, Looking Ahead
Center for the Study of Weapons of Mass Destruction
October 2009
• The Integrated Planning System
Homeland Security
January 2009
•National Emergency Communications Plan
The purpose of this plan is to promote the ability of emergency response providers and relevant government officials to continue to communicate in the event of natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other man-made disasters and to ensure, accelerate, and attain interoperable emergency communications nationwide.
July 2008
•National Response Framework
A guide to how the Nation conducts all-hazards response.
January 2008
•Disaster Law and the Legal Academy: Curriculum, Research and Law Reform
Report on a Workshop Held at U.C. Berkeley Law School
June 25, 2007
•Reconciling Federal Emergency Response Plans
– NRT Homeland Security Recommendations
This plan assists in the consolidation of existing Federal Government emergency response plans into a single, coordinated national response plan.
Published 2003

•New York State – Public Health Legal Manual
A Guide for Judges, Attorneys and Public Health Professionals
Published 2011
New York State Bar Association

•Bio Incident Annex
Outlines the actions, roles, and responsibilities associated with response to a human disease outbreak of known or unknown origin requiring Federal assistance.
August 2008
•Developing and Maintaining Emergency Operations Plans
Comprehensive Preparedness Guide (CPG) 101
Version 2.0
November 2010
•White House
Memorandum For the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies
Guidance to implement the Administration’s policies on scientific integrity.
December 17, 2010

• A Governor’s Guide to Homeland Security
As chief executive, governors are responsible for ensuring their state is adequately prepared
for emergencies and disasters of all types and sizes.
NGA Center for Best Practices
November 2010
•Planning Guidance for Response to a Nuclear Detonation
Second Edition
June 2010
•Interim Emergency Management Planning Guide for Special Needs Populations
Comprehensive Preparedness Guide (CPG 301)
Version 1.0
August 15, 2008
•Preparedness and Response to a Mass Casualty Event Resulting from Terrorist Use of Explosives
Interim Planning Guide 2010
•National Preparedness Guidelines
September 2007
•FEMA Target Capabilities List
A companion to the National Preparedness Guidelines
September 2007

•The Public Transportation System Security and Emergency Preparedness Planning Guide
Final Report
January 2003

•Compilation of Homeland Security Related Executive Orders
(E.O. 4601 Through E.O. 13528)
June 2010

•A Review of the Proposed Revisions to the Federal Principles and Guidelines Water Resources Planning Document

•Civil Applications Committee (CAC) Blue Ribbon Study
Independent Study Group Final Report
Giving civil sector information from classified satellite information.
September 2005
•Preventing a Disaster Within the Disaster: The Effective Use and Management of Unaffiliated Volunteers
Publisher: Points of Light Foundation and Volunteer Center National Network
Published 2002

• The Supreme Court Upholds EPA Standard-
Setting Under the Clean Air Act: Whitman v. American Trucking Associations
CRS Report for Congress RS20860
March 28, 2001
•Critical Foundations Protecting America’s Infrastructures
The Report of the President’s Commission on Critical Infrastructure Protection
October 1997

•Ready or Not? Protecting the Public’s Health From Diseases, Disasters and Bio-terrorism
Published: Trust for America’s Health
December 2010
•Public Health Preparedness: Strengthening the Nation’s Emergency Response State by State
A Report on CDC-funded Preparedness and Response Activities in 50 States, 4 Cities, and 8 U.S. Insular Areas
September 2010
•The Next Challenge in Healthcare Preparedness: Catastrophic Health Events
Preparedness Report
January 2010

•Review of the Department of Homeland Security’s Approach to RISK ANALYSIS
National Research Council of the National Academies
Publication Year: 2010
•High-Impact, Low-Frequency Event Risk to the North American Bulk Power System
A Jointly-Commissioned Summary Report of the North American Electric Reliability Corporation and the U.S. Department of Energy’s November 2009 Workshop
June 2010
•Risk Steering Committee
DHS Risk Lexicon
The DHS Risk Lexicon Project is to establish and make available a comprehensive list of terms and meanings relevant to the practice of homeland security risk management and analysis.
September 2010
•The Department of Homeland Security’s Risk Assessment Methodology: Evolution, Issues, and Options for Congress
CRS Report for Congress RL33858
February 2, 2007
• Updated Principles for Risk Analysis
An assessment of the risks posed under certain conditions, and assessments of the potential changes in risk achievable due to different policy options.
September 19, 2007
•The Role of Risk Analysis and Risk Management in Environmental Protection
The potential uses of risk analysis differ.
CRS Issue Brief for Congress IB94036
Updated July 7, 2003
(This publication link is from University of North Texas Digital Library)
• Risk Assessment in the President’s National Strategy for Homeland Security
Risk experts debate the exact meaning of the term“risk.”
CRS Report for Congress RS21348
October 31, 2002
(This publication link is from University of North Texas Digital Library)
IV. Environmental Policy And Programs
•Environmental Laws: Summaries of Major Statutes Administered by the Environmental Protection Agency
October 8, 2010
V. Significant Documents in EM History
•US Department of Homeland Security/FEMA (New Addition)
Organizational Chart
Published February 2011

•Staff Report on Emergency Preparedness in the United States
Senate Special Committee on National Emergencies and Delegated Emergency Powers
March 1976
•Civil Defense for National Security
A report to the Secretary of Defense
Published in 1948
VI. Comparative Studies of International EM Policies and Issues
•Still Shaky
A Year After the Earthquake in Haiti, the Key to Stability Is to Build the State
January 2011

The list above contains documents that can be found on my blogs listed at http://www.vacationlanegrp.com on lefthand side of website. WARNING: Some of the links on blogs have expired. What is, however, amazing IMO, is how many thesis writer, and even full Professors, in publishing papers or even books have failed to conduct basic literature searches.

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 14, 2014 @ 8:36 am

FEMA continues to reference E.O. 12148 as authority for its programs, functions and activities. Let’s say this is correct [IMO legally erroneous conclusion}
Section 2 of that order unrevised since July 15, 1979 when issued.

Like many E.O. and Presidential Directives, FEMA has never complied with tasks under Section 2.

FEMA and DHS are notorious for ignoring written orders of Presidents. Their argument is often that these are unfunded mandates. An argument, that like the States, are used to avoid accountability.

Comment by William R. Cumming

September 14, 2014 @ 8:53 am

?Executive Order 12148 – Federal Emergency Management as amended, current through June 3, 1994
?OUSD Memo on Amendment to EO 12148, Office of the Under Secretary of Defense, June 15, 1994

Found on Cumming blog accessed through http://www.vacationlanegrp.com

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