Dr. James Jay Carafano, Homeland Security, The Heritage Foundation

Dr. James CarafanoDomPrep’s John Morton met with¬†Dr. James Jay Carafano, Senior Fellow for National Security and Homeland Security, The Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for International Studies, The Heritage Foundation. Dr. Carafano discusses in-depth his take on the key lesson learned from the Hurricane Katrina response: the need for a 0-to-96-hour federal national-response capability in a catastrophic disaster to support decentralized execution of the consequence management.

DomPrep has divided the 52 minute interview into seven segments.


Listen to Audio Segment One Katrina/Rita Response/Recovery

Carafano‚Äôs view that the experience of Katrina will not fundamentally change the National Response Plan (NRP)–i.e., local authorities will remain in charge of response. How in a catastrophic disaster a local authority must plug into a national-response system that provides a 12-hour federal response capability. The need to restructure the National Guard and Department of Defense (DOD) military-support elements as a key component of an improved federal national-response system.

Duration: 11 Minutes 07 Seconds

Listen to Audio Segment Two Improving Exercises

The need to restructure the biennial TopOff Exercises, given that “top officials” have tended not to play in TopOff. Improving TopOff through turnkey training and support, and moving toward a regional training and exercise program that integrates with NorthCom.

Duration: 2 Minutes 18 Seconds

Listen to Audio Segment Three The Katrina Effect on DHS

Katrina’s validation of Secretary Chertoff’s Second Stage Review, which emphasizes catastrophic incident preparedness and returns FEMA to an independent agency within DHSРbut focused on the national-response mission during times of natural disaster. Carafano’s view that DHS will emerge with a regional structure in which DHS field offices will provide substantive linkages to state and local authorities. The NRP as a work-in-progress in which continual exercising will test assumptions. His endorsement of the NRP’s Catastrophic Incident Annex.

Duration: 8 Minutes 03 Seconds

Listen to Audio Segment Four The Implications for DHS Budgets

Carafano‚Äôs prediction that increased funding will be provided for programs–most notably Coast Guard modernization–supporting a national response to catastrophic natural disasters. Balancing natural disaster preparedness with increased funding for the prevention of terrorism–e.g., for domestic counter-terrorism programs, improved immigration screening, and smarter borders.

Duration: 7 Minutes 03 Seconds

Listen to Audio Segment Five Implications for Use of the Military

His case that DOD will remain in a support role, with National Guard-like capabilities, to provide a national response to a catastrophic disaster. The need for constabulary units and hybrid-engineering battalions that can rapidly deploy and manage a turnover, within the first 96 hours, to follow-on federal civil assets.

Duration: 7 Minutes 36 Seconds

Listen to Audio Segment Six Posse Comitatus, Private Military Companies (PMCs), MIPT Knowledge Bases

Carafano‚Äôs belief that the current Posse Comitatus law has enormous flexibility and does not need to be changed. How private military companies (PMCs) will continue to be used in catastrophic incidents–but with the proviso that authorities have exercised prior due diligence in the preparedness planning stage. The excellent¬†MIPT¬†(Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism) knowledge bases as resources and lessons learned for responders.

Duration: 5 Minutes 31 Seconds

Listen to Audio Segment Seven

DOD’s Strategy for Homeland Defense and Civil Support

The absence of a security plan or civilian SWAT capabilities to deal with Beslan-type scenarios. Dr. Carafano‚Äôs view that¬†U.S. forces must be prepared for combat operations¬†on U.S. soil–e.g., to support civilian SWAT teams. Also, his case for building a ready-alert constabulary force in the National Guard with the security, medical, and critical-infrastructure response capabilities needed to support states, but also possessing also a federal utility for deployment overseas.

Duration: 9 Minutes 53 seconds

Dr. Carafano is one of The Heritage Foundation’s leading scholars in defense transformation, military operations and strategy, and homeland security. Recognizing that the war against terrorism will be a protracted conflict, his research focuses on developing the national security that the nation needs to secure the long-term interests of the United States-protecting its citizens, providing for economic growth, and preserving civil liberties.

An accomplished historian and teacher, Dr. Carafano was an assistant professor at the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, N.Y. and served as Director of Military Studies at the Army’s Center of Military History. He also taught at Mount Saint Mary College and served as a fleet professor at the U.S. Naval War College. He is a visiting professor at the National Defense University and Georgetown University.

John F. Morton

John F. Morton is the Strategic Advisor for DomPrep. He is also the Homeland Security Team Lead for the Project on National Security Reform (PNSR). A member of the DomPrep team since its founding, he has served as managing editor for writer assignments and interviewer for scores of DomPrep audio interviews.



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