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Q: Office of Homland Security ( Answered 1 out of 5 stars,   5 Comments )
Subject: Office of Homland Security
Category: Reference, Education and News > Education
Asked by: sben-ga
List Price: $30.00
Posted: 28 Oct 2002 11:12 PST
Expires: 27 Nov 2002 11:12 PST
Question ID: 91181
1. What existing bureaucratic agencies are included with in the Office
of Homeland Security and Why?

2. Which in your opinion is the most crucial with regards to
preventing future terrorist attacks and why?

3. Are there any brand new bureaucratic agencies included within the
OHS and if so describe their distinct role/function within the new

4.What is unique about the OHS in comparison to other bureaucratic
Subject: Re: Office of Homland Security
Answered By: aliciadenney-ga on 28 Oct 2002 15:58 PST
Rated:1 out of 5 stars
Hello!  This is a fantastic question that you have asked us Google
researchers to tackle.  I am pleased to learn about the department
right along with you.  I truly hope that the information that I
provide you with serves it’s purpose, and perhaps goes above and
beyond my call of duty, in that you might learn something that you
didn’t even ask to know!

First and foremost, I thought that it might be a good idea to give you
a few links to some resources that are considered definitive in the
comprehension of this pending change to our governmental structure:

Here is the White House’s Official Website on the transformation into
the Department of Homeland Secuity.  While it provides some great
basic information on the switch, there are many other sites which do a
much better job at explaining the creation of the new department.

This is a GREAT site, which touts itself as the "The definitive
homeland security information resource"  and calls itself the
"National Homeland Security Knowledgebase."  The information on this
site is culled from other online resources by Two Tigers Radiological
Services, which specializes in the production of tools and materials
used in the event of a nuclear or radiological emergencies in the
"homeland."  Yeah, okay, that’s scary.  Anyway, here is the site!

Your first questions asks which beaurocratic agencies now fall under
the category of OSH.  I was shocked when I found out that ALL of the
following will/now do:

Office of Homeland Security, White House American Red Cross Centers
for Disease Control and PreventionCentral Intelligence Agency Critical
Infrastructure Assurance OfficeCustoms Service Department Agriculture
Department of TransportationDepartment of DefenseDepartment of Energy
Dept of Justice, Office for Domestic Preparedness Environmental
Protection Agency 	FBI National Domestic Preparedness Office FBI
terrorism public outreach Federal Emergency Management Agency Federal
Aviation Administration National Infrastructure Protection Center
United States Coast Guard United States Fire AdministrationThe
Committee on National Security/21st CenturyHouse Subcom. Terrorism and
Homeland SecurityNational Academies National Library of Medicine:
Biological WarfareNational Domestic Preparedness OfficeHealth and
Human Svcs, Office of Emergency Prep.

Most of these departments are under the new heading f Homeland
Security for obvious reasons:  they serve the public in such a manner
that is in some way, shape or form, related to national security. 
I’ll give some examples:
a) The American Red Cross:  These folks are summoned in wherever there
is any type of national disaster, be it from a tornado, hurricane, or
due to more unnatural disasters, such as Sept. 11 or the Oklahoma City
bombings.  According to their site, the American Red Cross comes to
the aid of more than 67,000 disasters ANNUALLY.  While they are not a
governmental agency proper, they are listed as a part of Homeland
Security in part due to the fact that, "in 1905, the Red Cross was
chartered by Congress to ‘carry on a system of national and
international relief in time of peace and apply the same in mitigating
the sufferings caused by pestilence, famine, fire, floods, and other
great national calamities, and to devise and carry on measures for
preventing the same.’ The Charter is not only a grant of power, but
also an imposition of duties and obligations to the nation, to
disaster victims, and to the people who generously support its work
with their donations." SOURCE:

b) The Center for Disease Control:  This is a govt’l agency whose
homebase is in Atlanta, GA.  They deal with the control and prevention
of all diseases that pose a national threat.  In a post Sept. 11th
United States, they have become crucial to the protection of national
security, in light of the chemical and biological  threats that the
United States now faces.

**If you would like me to go through all of the agencies listed and
explain why they fall under the OHS category, I can definitely do
that!  Just respond after I post this answer and ask for a

2)  In question #2, you asked for a researcher’s opinion on which
governmental agency is the most crucial to the prevention of future
terrorist attacks.  This is truly a subjective response, because there
are innumerable reasons that could be cited for any of these agencies
and their necessity for the prevention of further attacks.  But, based
on my own research following Sept 11, I will do my best!  While many
will argue that future attacks will take place on U.S. interests
overseas rather than domestically—on our mainland—I continue to be
certain that more attacks are being planned against the United
States….IN the United States.  If you have followed some of Bush’s
often controversial speeches post Sept. 11, and are familiar with his
"Axis of Evil," you will notice that the focus has been on nuclear
countries, and I believe that future attacks, if the global climate of
nuclear threat continues to escalate as it has in the past few years,
this is the reality that we must now face. The other most formidable
threat is that of biological attacks.  This is an easy one to
accomplish, because one TINY vial of smallpox, which can be bred on
the surface of a chicken egg (like Penicillin) is enough to put down
hundreds of thousands of people.  This does not require the use of
expensive, nuclear energy, and is much more inconspicuous the a
nuclear bomb.  Because of these factors, I feel that the following
agencies are the most crucial to the protection of  our homeland:
          -The CDC:  I’m thinking that they would rock out on any
biological threats, right?
          -Customs Service:  it’s up to these bad boys/girls to not
let terrorists into our         country in the first place!
          -The Department of Defense:  while many do not see the
department of Defense as a protector of domestic security—they most
certainly are.  It’s just that in this generation, most have not seen
it in action here.  But if we keep going in the direction that we are
going in, this will happen soon!
-Most important, in my opinion is the Critical Infrastructure
Assurance Office.  According to their site (which is well worth
checking out!): the "CIAO is responsible for assisting civilian
federal departments and agencies with analyzing their dependencies on
critical infrastructures. The objective is to ensure that the federal
government continues to be able to deliver services essential to the
nation's security, economy, or the health and safety of its citizens,
notwithstanding deliberate attempts by a variety of threats to disrupt
such services through cyber or physical attacks." SOURCE:  This is CRUCIAL to the
well-being of the United States.  If some other tragic emergency were
to take place, the CIAO would be there, ready to assess our dependency
on critical infrastructures, and be ready to find alternate, temporary
routes to make sure that our most basic services continue running
smoothly.  I believe that if any governmental bureau could prevent
mass panic from ensuing, it would be the CIAO.  The term "critical" in
the title of the department tells a lot.  By this reference, "These
are deemed "critical" because their incapacitation could jeopardize
the nation's security, seriously disrupt the functioning of the
national economy, or adversely affect the health or safety of large
segments of the American public."  Pretty heavy stuff, I would say. 
We do not realize the degree to which we depend on infrastructure for
every day life here in the States.  It is this agency that we should
thank for continuing to make sure that everything runs as smoothly as
it has.  Imagine what would happen if the computers at all air control
towers were hacked into and scrambled?!  Pay attention to this
department.  It will be much more publicly known in the near future!
Here is a list of what CIAO collaborated in creating.  It is a list of
the top 20 most Critical Internet Security Vulnerabilities:  Scary that this is posted on the

3)  In Q3, you ask what brand new, if any, organizations have been
created.  While no new departments have been officially created,
especially since the Bill has not made it ALL the way through its
legislative steps, it is important the know that OHS is meant to be a
re-organization of our country’s security efforts so that it may be
more easily managed and controlled in future events.  Here are some
excerpts of  a comprehensive synopsis of the PURPOSE of Homeland
Security, which can be found at:
-"The nation requires a Homeland Security Advisory System Such a
system would provide Such a system would provide a comprehensive and
effective means to disseminate information regarding terrorist
acts….to the American people.  Such a system would provide warnings in
the form of a set of graduated "Threat Conditions" that would increase
as the risk of the threat increases. At each Threat Condition, Federal
departments and agencies would implement a corresponding set of
"Protective Measures" to further reduce vulnerability or increase
response capability during a period of heightened alert. This system
is intended to create a common vocabulary, context, and structure for
an ongoing national discussion about the nature of the threats that
confront the homeland and the appropriate measures that should be
taken in response. It seeks to inform and facilitate decisions
appropriate to different levels of government and to private citizens
at home and at work. Homeland Security Advisory System The Homeland
Security Advisory System shall be binding on the executive branch and
suggested, although voluntary, to other levels of government and the
private sector."

4)  What is unique about the OHS is that it is bringing a BUNCH of
governmental departments together under one authority (aside from the
fact that all operate under the auspices of the US Government).  This
way, the level of organization becomes much higher and much easier to
command for the head of the department—Tom Ridge.  He is who all of
the heads of the departments will answer to.  It is the most
significant transformation of the U.S. government in over a
half-century.  Until now, each department on the list operated as
independent entities.  Now, they will work in concert to protect the
United States and it’s security interests.

I truly hope that the information that I have provided you has been of
some help.  If there is anything more that you would like to know,
please feel free to post a request for question clarification, and I
will be right on that.

Thank you so much for using Google Answers.  This is an important
topic that I am glad that people out there are interested in.  I feel
that I have learned a lot from this research, and I do hope that you
feel the same.

Take Care!
sben-ga rated this answer:1 out of 5 stars
I don’t believe that in was worth while investment ($30.00)!
As an example, I had to re-research the 1st question because it was a
run on sentence and I COULDN'T TELL WHAT DEPTARMENT WAS WHAT. Doesn't
anyone know how to use a comma?

Subject: Re: Office of Homland Security
From: aliciadenney-ga on 30 Oct 2002 11:12 PST
Hi Sben!
Well, rather than post a rating immediately, you definitely could have
asked me for a clarification....for free.  I am here to do whatever
possible to answer any question I feel capable of answering.  I've
been known as the "Queen of Commas," and as a political journalist,
find this comment charring, and of course my feelings are hurt.  If
this was an academic essay question, I wish that this would have been
stated so that I could have framed my answer in such a way.  What
would you like clarified?
Subject: Re: Office of Homland Security
From: aliciadenney-ga on 30 Oct 2002 11:21 PST
I SEE where you are frustrated!!!  I just read through the question in
the format that Google's site puts it in.  Whereas I typed it in a
word document before posting (because God forbid I lose an answer in a
computer crash), once I posted the table format onto the site as the
answer, the format was COMPLETELY lost, turning it into one big mushy
mess of a run-on list (NOT a sentence, obviously).
I COULD have just posted the table as found on the internet, but
thought that it would be more helpful for you to have the list in the
text of the question, using as few links as possible, considering what
I believed to be the nature of the question.
Oh, well, here is the list as a link:
As this is not it's own page, but rather linked as a
"jump-to-section," you will have to scroll to approximately 1/5 of the
page down.
If you have any other complaints, let's address them.  I do not want
you to walk away feeling as though your investment of 30.00 was
Subject: Re: Office of Homland Security
From: sailguy-ga on 17 Nov 2002 19:08 PST
Hi aliciadenney-ga. Excellent work answering the questions ...
especially considering that most folks in government pronbaly are
unclear as to the structure of the Office of Homeland Security. After
reading your answers and clicking thru your suppplied links, I'm
certainly a little less in the dark. Good luck.
Subject: Re: Office of Homland Security
From: elcorteingles-ga on 12 Sep 2003 03:22 PDT
I know this is a year later, but I'm researching Homeland Security and
this is a great answer. SBEN, you put up the $30.00. No one asked you
to, forced you to, etc. And then why not ask for clarification or
additional help before throwing a fit and giving her a lousy rating?
Fly off the handle unreasonably much? Did you just pick that figure so
that you could complain and get a refund? :/ I hope everyone in your
life is writing things in clear words with 12 point type and 1"
margins so that you can deal.
Subject: Re: Office of Homland Security
From: ewl-ga on 12 Sep 2003 10:44 PDT
Maybe this answer was a reasonable guess a year ago.  But even then,
that first list of "agencies" is very misleading and looks to have
come from a website that has a list of organizations RELATED to
homeland security, NOT that were being merged into DHS.  They're not
even all government entities-- i.e., the American Red Cross.  And the
House subcommittee on terrorism is a different branch of government
altogether.  Must also disagree w/DOD having domestic security
functions!!!  For current info start with DHS's website:

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