25 March 2013

DoD Releases a New Strategy Doc for Supporting Civil Authorities at Home

The DoD has released their Strategy for Homeland Defense and Defense Support for Civil Authorities

DOD Releases Strategy for Homeland Defense and Defense Support for Civil Authorities
The Department of Defense announced today the release of the Strategy for Homeland Defense and Defense Support of Civil Authorities. This policyestablishes DoD’s priorities in the areas of homeland defense and defense support of civil authorities through 2020, consistent with the president’s National Security Strategy and the 2012 Defense Strategic Guidance. It links with other DoD and national strategic documents related to missile defense, space, cyberspace, counterterrorism, and the Western Hemisphere. The strategy identifies two priority missions for the department in the homeland: defend U.S. territory from direct attack by state and non-state actors; and provide assistance to domestic civil authorities in the event of natural or manmade disasters, potentially in response to a very significant or catastrophic event.

The strategy emphasizes cost-effective policy mechanisms and innovative approaches to defend the homeland against direct attacks and to provide timely responses to routine and catastrophic events on U.S. territory. It stresses the continuation of DoD capabilities to defend against conventional and emerging threats in the air and maritime domains, while expanding cooperation with federal, state, and local partners to defeat asymmetric threats – including, for example, homegrown violent extremists who may seek to use improvised explosive devices. Additionally, it addresses DoD preparations for responding to man-made and natural disasters.

“The Department of Defense’s contributions to the defense of our nation have evolved over the past decade and account for new threats and challenges. Lessons learned from events like Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy and collaboration with our interagency partners and State Governors have framed our current approach to DoD civil support activities,” said Acting Assistant Secretary of Defense for Homeland Defense and Americas’ Security Affairs Todd Rosenblum. “This strategy emphasizes strengthening our partnerships with federal agencies like the Departments of Homeland Security and Justice, with state and local governments, with the private sector, and with our Canadian and Mexican neighbors – not only for more comprehensive approaches to complex security challenges in the homeland, but also to create efficiencies through collaboration and joint action,”

For further information about this strategy, please access http://www.defense.gov/news/Homelanddefensestrategy.pdf

One of these days, I need to actually read my way into this and see if there's anything in there that would raise some eyebrows.

By: Brant


Brian said...

Better you than me.
The proof with these things is what rolls out in their actual execution.
There have been only a few recent occasions when large numbers of regular troops have been used to restore or keep order in the United States: Sandy, Katrina, and before that the LA riots (20 years ago). This last is the only recent occasion I can think of where civil order broke down not in response to a natural disaster.
The reference to "homegrown violent extremists" is interesting; it seems it's OK to talk about that now (thinking of the time during the Bush years that an FBI report on domestic right-wing violent extremist movements was suppressed, and all the agents working on the problem but one were transferred elsewhere - nope, nothing to see here).
Also very interesting is the reference to partnerships with the private sector: could this mean de facto recognition of private security agencies, from rent-a-cops to Blackwater, as private armies that could be Federalized?

Brant said...

Keep in mind that there was also no federal military response to the LA riots - that was all California National Guard.

Brian said...

Yes, it was CA Guard at first and mostly, and initial deployment of the Guard will probably always be the case. But 7th Infantry Division infantry and MPs from Fort Ord and Marines from Camp Pendleton reinforced them on the fourth day. I recall reading an article a long time ago on this.

Some COL wrote an article in Small Wars Journal (I think) a while back with a civil disorder scenario where the Guard was judged not politically reliable, so Federal military moved in right away.

Or perhaps Federal involvement might begin right away after a CBRN event, if the state's Guard did not have units able to control or respond to such an event.

Anyway, go read that thing and tell us what you find out!