Magazine article National Defense

Backyard Bombs: DHS Technology Chief to Focus on Explosives Threat

Magazine article National Defense

Backyard Bombs: DHS Technology Chief to Focus on Explosives Threat

Article excerpt

The Pentagon will have some help in its ongoing effort to defeat improvised explosive devices if Jay Cohen, director of science and technology at the Department of Homeland Security, gets his way.

"We're going to get back in the IED business. I don't have enough money yet, but I will," Cohen vowed at a speech before National Defense Industrial Association member.

And while infamous examples of such incidents have derived from homegrown terrorists--namely Ted Kaczynski, the Unabomber, Timothy McVeigh at Oklahoma City and Eric Rudolf at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics--Cohen believes attacks will come from overseas.

"I believe that our enemy is fixated on air transportation, [but] that doesn't mean they won't attack other transportation," he said.

It is only "a matter of time" before tactics used in train and subway bombings in Madrid and London are employed in the United States, he said.

Cohen, a retired Navy, rear admiral who previously Served as head of the Office of Naval Research, took over the directorate in August. The department has received its share of criticism for sonic of 'its technology programs, such as the transportation worker identity card, airport screening machines and nuclear material detectors at ports of, entry. …

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