Homeland Security the World Has Changed Term Paper

Pages: 10 (2900 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 3  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Business - Management

Homeland Security

Download full Download Microsoft Word File
paper NOW!
The world has changed in recent decades and the threats to homeland security are redefined, having become more and more unpredictable. The new terrorism practiced by extremist movements, which target civil objectives around the globe, has raised the level of awareness from the part of national authorities, taking into consideration the fact that the number of civil casualties is on a continuous rise. This is why a coherent national strategy for preventing terrorist attacks and reacting to natural and human disasters is essential, especially for a country such as the United States. From this perspective, and in the light of the 911 events, the 2002 Homeland Security Act set the legal basis for the Department of Homeland Security. However, despite all measures taken, emergency managers who conduct the saving operations and the mass scale actions in response to a mass casualty event play an important part. Therefore, in the light of the role he plays in the economy of the rescuing efforts, personal qualities, the resources available at his disposal, along with the support from the authorities are key elements in achieving success in the actions undergone. At the same time however, an important aspect of his entire local strategy is the place this has in the wider more complex national effort and the way this is coordinated at the level of federal, state and local authorities. From this perspective, there have been voiced certain doubts over the capacity of the government to effectively deploy the resources at its disposal in case of disaster or emergency. Nonetheless, it can be said that as the new challenges facing homeland security diversify, a coherent and concerted strategy was needed in order to face up to the threats of the new millennium.

TOPIC: Term Paper on Homeland Security the World Has Changed in Assignment

The central role in an emergency management situation is that of the emergency manager. From the start, it is important to notice the fact that in most cases there is a tendency of male predominance in the decision-making positions. An eloquent example is the Department of Homeland Security leadership, obviously dominated by men, starting from Secretary Chertoff to even the Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Jeffrey W. Runge. Therefore, out of almost 44 officials, only 10% of them are women. (U.S. Dept. Of Homeland Security, 2006) Ronald Perry points out this fact as being in someway a normal outcome of the male dominated society and of the limited capacity of women to face emergency conditions and tensions. Thus, "the emergency management function is most typically housed in civil defense agencies and fire and police departments- organizations that until recently have been composed almost exclusively of men. (...) the number of female emergency managers has increased considerably in recent years, but the job likely remains one for which men are perceived as better suited than women." (Perry, Tierney & Lindell, 2001)

Despite the fact that there is a general trend dominated by men in emergency management units, certain qualities are considered universal in order to be successful as emergency manager. Thus, according to Thomas Drabek, professionalism, individual qualities and the emergency management activities are essential in the work and performance of emergency managers. (Drabek, 1990)

Professionalism is crucial especially in the conditions of poor resources. For instance, it is important to make use of all means necessary in order to respond properly to an emergency crisis, such as a violent storm that results in massive casualties. In this situation, it may be that medical aid be scarce and that human resources be insufficient. Therefore, it is up to the emergency manager to find adequate solution to solve the issue of medical assistance, to coordinate the services and the communication with all the parties involved, such as hospital personnel, firefighters, police officers, and even the eventual state or federal help. At the same time however, these activities cannot be conducted outside a proper legal framework that attributed the emergency manager with this authority of coordination. Thus, a part of the professional style of the manager also implies a well-prepared background in legal matters, and a full respect for the law. In these conditions, the person not only is in total agreement with the regulations, but at the same time, enjoys the respect and appreciation of those around him who see him as the legitimate leader of emergency management.

Individual qualities are also an element that weights heavily in defining the portrait of an effective emergency manager. For this reason, he must be a good coordinator, have excellent communication skills and ensure that a proper connection is made between all the parties, the public and the private sector. At the same time, however, Drabek points out, "like other public safety organizations, emergency management agencies may stress personal qualities, action styles, and modes of organization that are more compatible with men's perceived gender role than with women's, such as risk taking, aggressiveness, an emphasis on rapid decision making and action and a preference for an hierarchical forms of organization." (Drabek, 2001) Thus, an emergency manager must consider al aspect of the crisis in thorough detail before taking the decision to act, but, at the same time, he must be determined and have rapid line of thought. Taking a medical crisis, for instance, the emergency manager must be able to intervene and coordinate the medical help needed at the sight in such a manner as not to compromise other activities and services from the population. From this point-of-view, the decision to use a percent of the regular medical assistance staff in the detriment of other regular medical assistance must be done taking into consideration all the information available and with due regard to the state of emergency. This is why it is important to have in mind the full operational capacity at one's disposal, and, at the same time, to be well prepared in advance for the eventuality of disaster.

The third element pointed out by Drabek is closely related to the idea of preparedness. Encouraging emergency activities can be rather benefic, not necessarily only when the crisis emerges, but also in the eventuality of a crisis, especially because it increases the awareness among the civil population of the risks and dangers facing them in different situations. At the same time, emergency managers can encourage certain activities that would improve the authorities' responses to hypothetical situations that could become reality. In this respect, a close cooperation with the federal, state and county authorities would ensure a proper channel of communication and improved intervention results.

The Department of Homeland Security is the highest authority that coordinates the activities conducted in respect to the defense of the homeland and of the U.S. citizens. The result of the 911 attacks of the American soil, the Homeland Security Act established almost a political doctrine based on protecting the core values of the American democracy, as president Bush confirmed in the Address to the Nation in November 2001, "the government has a responsibility to protect our citizens, and that starts with homeland security." (U.S. Dept. Of Homeland Security, 2004) According to its own stated mission, "we, in the Department of Homeland Security, are working to protect our fellow citizens and our very way of life by securing our borders, our airports, our waterways and our critical infrastructure. We are increasing our nation's ability to respond to emergencies. We are protecting the rights of American citizens and enhancing public services." (U.S. Dept. Of Homeland Security, 2004) Thus, the activities of DHS focus on deterring terrorism, protection of citizens from both outside threats such as international crimes and illegalities, and from internal ones, such as natural disasters and other emergencies. Still, despite the fact that the DHS is the political and administrative response to the tragic events of 2001, it has yet to escape criticism for both its organizational structure and for its methods used in managing operations.

On the one hand, the creation of a structure that would enable the coordination of all efforts conducted at state level in areas such as information gathering, emergency responses, and other activities related to the citizens and their lives, was overall, a necessary change, demanded especially by the inability to prevent the 9/11 attacks. The department, as part of the executive branch now deals with and coordinates all sorts of activities, from border control to winter warnings. In theory, this bureaucratic organization would give coherence to actions taken at the federal level and thus a better use of funds. Yet, what prevents the Department from acting successfully is exactly this bureaucratic apparatus. There are indeed too many department components that are designed to do similar jobs and do not have very clearly distinct attributions and missions. For instance, the Science and Technology Directorate, the segment in charge of research, may appear to be doing similar work as other agencies and components of the executive in charge of information gathering, while the Office of Intelligence and Analysis is engaged in similar activities of identifying and assessing current and future threats to the nation. It may… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

Two Ordering Options:

Which Option Should I Choose?
1.  Download full paper (10 pages)Download Microsoft Word File

Download the perfectly formatted MS Word file!

- or -

2.  Write a NEW paper for me!✍🏻

We'll follow your exact instructions!
Chat with the writer 24/7.

Future of Homeland Security Essay

Homeland Security Planning at Different Organizational Levels Research Paper

Homeland Security Principles of Emergency Management Term Paper

Homeland Security Essay

France's Homeland Security Challenges and the Policies Thesis

View 200+ other related papers  >>

How to Cite "Homeland Security the World Has Changed" Term Paper in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Homeland Security the World Has Changed.  (2007, January 19).  Retrieved November 26, 2021, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/homeland-security-world-changed/651935

MLA Format

"Homeland Security the World Has Changed."  19 January 2007.  Web.  26 November 2021. <https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/homeland-security-world-changed/651935>.

Chicago Style

"Homeland Security the World Has Changed."  Essaytown.com.  January 19, 2007.  Accessed November 26, 2021.