Commentary

An Open Letter to the President-Elect

President-Elect Obama has promised that "change" will be the hallmark of his administration. Here are a few major changes that, it is respectfully suggested, he might consider in the fields of national defense and homeland security.

Anatomy of a BioDetector: A Complicated Technology Explained for the Layman

by Doreen Robinson -

The detection and disposal of lethal biological agents is one of the most difficult challenges facing the nation's emergency responders. A leading U.S. expert discusses the progress already made to solve this problem, and what is coming next.

China Today: Spectacular, Mesmerizing, Prosperous - But

by James D. Hessman -

An AUSA (Association of the U.S. Army) report takes a close look at the "New China" and sees not only unprecedented prosperity and a less hostile foreign policy but also a fierce nationalism and some still-simmering anti-U.S. political policies.

On the Anniversary of 9-11, Where Is Homeland Security as an Election Issue

by Jena Baker McNeill -

The campaign platforms of the Democratic and Republican presidential candidates differ in many particulars, but they should agree on most homeland-security issues. (Article reprinted courtesy of the Heritage Foundation.)

Customizing the Tool: The Tailoring of Crisis-Management and Mass-Casualty Software

by Kate Rosenblatt -

The U.S. healthcare system is in most respects the best in the world. But keeping the paperwork up with the patient is still a formidable problem, particularly in the handling of mass-casualty patients with several hospitals involved.

'Zero Hour': A Serious Game for Emergency Responders

by James D. Hessman -

George Washington University plans to convene two "policy summits" focused on the preparedness needs of large cities. One highlight of the meetings will be a bloodily realistic videogame showing how first responders can help turn victims into patients.

A Follow-Up Report: Breakthrough in Towson - AHC's GIS Workshop

by Diana Hopkins -

The 29-30 July All-Hazards Consortium workshop focused on the exciting technological capabilities provided by the introduction of new GIS (geographic information systems) devices, and spelled out a number of formidable challenges as well.

Battlefield Forensics: Rebirth of an Ancient Science

by Neil C. Livingstone -

Historians see yesterday's battlefields as primary sources for their next scholarly tomes. The modern military sees today's battlefield as an unsifted mountain of intelligence information and, possibly, as evidence in future courtroom proceedings.

Containing the Threat: Eleven Million Challenges

by James D. Hessman -

CBP falls short in its efforts to start implementing the "100-percent screening" mandate issued by Congress. The issues involved are numerous, costly, and extremely complicated. Nonetheless, failure is not an option.

Three to Get Ready

by James D. Hessman -

The could-have/should-have (but did not) scenarios of the past serve as abundant reminders that the cost of national preparedness is only a fraction of the much higher cost that must always be paid for not being prepared.