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A Conversation About the Future of Homeland Security Education

I recently wrote a short essay for Journal of Homeland Security Education that graded general state of Homeland Security (HS) education today. I proposed – at the risk of offending most of our colleagues – that homeland security-specific academia would receive a solid C. Our community has done plenty right. Yet, we have plenty of room for improvement.

The Many Faces of Terrorism

Popular media often portrays a terrorist as a person of Middle Eastern descent. It’s a shortsighted, dangerous and limited perspective that reflects the media’s lack of diversity in imagination. Seldom are terrorists depicted as blonde-haired, blue-eyed individuals dressed in traditional business attire. But that view may soon change.

New Horizons in Homeland Security: Discoveries at NASPAA Conference

The National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration (NASPAA) annual conference wrapped up in Austin, Texas this past fall. The NASPAA is the authorized accreditor for public policy programs and is considered the global standard in public service education. Their annual conference is a significant event, with national and international scholars addressing issues of public policy importance.

Are We Prepared for Pandemics?

CTU’s Global Security Series offers background on current national and homeland security topics. In this series, University Dean of Security Studies, Dr. Morag, focuses on an often unaddressed area of homeland security: pandemics and its impact on public health. In this fourth installment, Dr. Morag surveys the variety of people, systems and processes that need to coordinate to minimize the risk and spread of a pandemic.

Elevating, Advancing the Role of Homeland Security

You might consider Homeland Security a work in progress. It’s a function. It’s an approach. It’s a new discipline that is a profession in and of itself, but is a facet of many others. It’s far more than the Department of Homeland Security because the whole business of protecting our country is a collaborative effort that, for any given situation, can involve public and private resources, at the local, state and national levels, from firefighters to military personnel to medical researchers.

Understanding the U.S. Public Health System’s Response to Pandemics

Most people are unaware of what is or who becomes involved when a pandemic strikes. In this post, I explore the institutions and mechanisms that exist in the United States to track and cope with pandemic outbreaks in this country and worldwide. As you read, consider your part in this complex process. What can you do to minimize the potential spread of disease in your community?

Auto Hacking Could Be Your Biggest Threat

Approximately 400,000 people flow into the District of Columbia to work each day. Many commute by train or Metro. But a large number drive and thoughtlessly endure the slog into the Washington metro area. Few consider the potential threat hidden in their automobiles. But what if someone wanted to shut down the U.S. government? How might a determined adversary approach the problem using a non-kinetic weapon (i.e. no bombs or boom)? Could a simple computer virus do the trick?

The Ripple Effects of Pandemics on Modern Society

Human history records a number of significant pandemics, from influenza to tuberculosis. From this, most people associate pandemics with death, but few understand the severe impact pandemics have on society as a whole. The following three cases explore the potentially devastating nature of pandemics, both in terms of the loss of life and economic impact.

As Communities Recover from Disaster, Law Enforcement Plays Critical Role

The role of law enforcement has never solely been about enforcing the laws. The phrase “Serve and Protect” goes beyond catching bad guys. America’s history has shown us that the responsibilities of first responders during a disaster, whether natural or manmade, are critical to a community’s effective recovery.

Is a Pandemic a Risk to Homeland Security?

CTU’s Global Security Series offers background on current national and homeland security topics. In this new series, University Dean of Security Studies, Dr. Morag, will focus on an often unaddressed area of homeland security: public health. Today he begins by taking a deeper look at pandemics, the threats that they pose and how they are discovered and tracked.

When Disaster Strikes, Who’s in Charge?

We live in a country that, both by virtue of its size and its geographic location, is subject to a variety of natural disasters including earthquakes, brush fires, tornadoes, mudslides, flooding, ice storms, blizzards, tsunamis and, of course, hurricanes. Not surprisingly, a big and important part of the Homeland Security mission has to do with preparing for, responding to and recovering from natural disasters.

Politics, Hurricanes and FEMA

In the dark alleys of presidential politics, there have been whispered (really, shouted) rumors that one of the candidates would eliminate the Federal Emergency Management Agency – FEMA – in order to reduce the deficit.

Is the U.S. Prepared to Manage Cybersecurity Threats?

The United States does not yet have a national strategy to deal with cybersecurity; cyber law is undeveloped, and while narrow segments of expertise exist inside and outside of government, broad understanding of the threat and what we might do to prepare for, recovery from, and respond to cyber attacks is woefully lacking.

Preparing for Disaster: Exercise Angel Thunder 2013

I recently returned from a planning conference associated with Exercise Angel Thunder 2013. AT-13, and its Defense Support of Civil Authorities segment (Resolute Angel) are played on an 18-month cycle to exercise local, state, federal, and multinational civil and military agencies in disaster response and – particularly for the military forces – personnel recovery in simulated earthquake and combat scenarios.