How should municipal police agencies participate in America's homeland security strategy?
Andreas, Michael D.
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The majority of municipal law enforcement agencies in the United States are not proactively contributing to America's homeland security, counterterrorism or domestic intelligence efforts. These agencies - the country's most critical domestic security assets - sit idle on the homeland security sidelines as terrorism becomes increasingly prolific, lethal, asymmetric, transnational, and closer to our hometowns. Seven years after 9/11, there is no nationwide, municipal-level network of homeland security professionals across the United States. There is no preventative-based, forward-thinking system for domestic intelligence collection. And the vast majority of police departments lack homeland security or terrorism specialists. Furthermore, neither federal nor state strategy has clearly defined specific homeland security roles and responsibilities for municipal police departments. And, as of this writing, there is no municipal-level homeland security strategy. Most importantly, no realistic federal or state strategy has been put forth that integrates all of America's homeland security assets-- including municipal police officers - into a single synergistic design. This thesis examines three policy options and arrives at a conclusion as to which option America should implement to effectively protect our citizenry from terrorists. This thesis introduces the concept of "municipal homeland security" and defines the specific roles and responsibilities of municipal police agencies.
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