Terrorism, Asymmetric Warfare, and Weapons of Mass Destruction: Defending the U.S. Homeland

By Anthony H. Cordesman | Go to book overview

Chapter 10

Lessons from Recent Major Commissions on Terrorism

While the federal government has failed to provide either meaningful transparency or measures of effectiveness for its efforts, three major commissions have released reports with recommendations applying to federal counterterrorism efforts in 1999 and 2000. While these reports concentrated on counterterrorism within a relatively narrow definition of the term and largely ignored state threats and other forms of homeland defense, many of their recommendations are still of considerable importance in highlighting the improvements that are still needed in the U.S. homeland defense effort. These recommendations take on a new importance and priority in light of the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.


THE GILMORE, BREMER, AND HART-RUDMAN COMMISSIONS

The Advisory Panel to Assess Domestic Response Capabilities, also known as the Gilmore Commission, released its first report, Assessing the Threat, on December 15, 1999. The National Defense Authorization Act for FY1999 created the Gilmore Commission and directed it to assess federal domestic preparedness programs, including training for local responders, coordination and funding, and local equipment deficiencies and to release three annual reports. The commission gave eight recommendations on domestic preparedness in its first report.

The Gilmore Commission released its second report on December 15, 2000. In addition to supporting its conclusions of a year earlier, the advisory

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