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The Relationship Between Homeland Defense and Homeland Security: U.S. Northern Command's Rubik's Cube

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Research rept.

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Since September 11, 2001, America has conducted sweeping executive branch changes and funneled vast economic and military resources toward lessening the opportunity for terrorists to strike within the borders of the United States. Two new bulwarks were added to the ramparts for securing and defending our nation, they were the Department of Homeland Security DHS and U.S. Northern Command of the Department of Defense DoD. With these additions, the spectrum between security and defense needs a new lens through which to focus the individual actions of each of these new Federal entities. The Departments of Homeland Security and Defense have the opportunity, the responsibility, and the challenge to confront the vulnerabilities and strengths that will assure the protection, prosperity, sovereignty, and freedom for which America stands. While there is no perfect national defense prescription, six modest proposals are presented for improving homeland defense and homeland security. The relationship between homeland defense and security requires some detailed understanding of each component. The author explains the conceptual background of each component, along with the functional Federal entities of DHS and DoD. The author also examines some of the legal limitations designed to insure civil control over military activities. These limitations are imposed upon the military when conducting operations within the U.S. By reviewing current threat analysis techniques used by the DoD, and examining three historical examples of foreign national struggles with terrorism and insurgency, the author proposes six ideas to enhance the DHS and the DoD relationship.

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  • Military Intelligence

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