Preparing for a Nightmare: USNORTHCOM'S Homeland Defense Mission Against Chemical and Biological Attack
NAVAL WAR COLLEGE NEWPORT RI JOINT MILITARY OPERATIONS DEPT
Pagination or Media Count:
The U.S. will be subject to future terrorist attacks and innovative violent extremists will employ the most destructive weapons they can acquire. Demonstrated terrorist capabilities and intent, combined with the opportunities provided by inadequate defenses, present a clear and present threat of attack with WMD. Chemical agents and biological pathogens, due to their availability and lethality, offer the most likely potential WMD for terrorist use. USNORTHCOMs mission to defend the homeland is guided by a family of CONPLANS dedicated to prevention and response to CBRN incidents. Despite stated national and military strategy to deter, defend, prevent, and respond to WMD, USNORTHCOMs existing plans and authorities are insufficient to perform the operational function of protection against chemical or biological weapons under its primary mission. Where prevention is not possible, protection must focus on early detection and rapid response which requires sufficient training and resources to execute swift identificationdiagnosis, containment, decontamination, and treatment to halt the spread of any agent or disease and save lives. USNORTHCOM is not adequately prepared to protect the homeland against the chemical or biological threat.
- Civil Defense
- Chemical, Biological and Radiological Warfare
- Unconventional Warfare