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In What Ways Has Homeland Security Changed Over The Past Decade?

April 21, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 125

Over the last 10 years, many striking changes have taken place in our Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Just this past summer, Janet Napolitano, the Secretary of Homeland Security, announced that the DHS would be implementing an updated National Terrorism Advisory System that will be able to provide accurate, up-to-date information regarding serious terrorist threats. This advisory system does away with the color-based alert system that was previously in place. Since 2002, the face of the DHS has changed many times, and so have its functions.

From 2002 to 2012 - a Decade of Changes

In 2002, many changes took place within the Department of Homeland Security, starting with a series of initiatives that were designed to enhance communication and coordination throughout all government levels and among the general public. President George W. Bush unveiled the Homeland Security Advisory System in March of that year, which was at Yellow at the time of its introduction and was raised to Orange in September of that year, based on intelligence reports that suggested plans for attacks on various large but lightly secured U.S. buildings. It wasn't lowered back down to Yellow until February of the following year.

In the following years, the Homeland Security Advisory System switched its alert from Yellow to Orange and back to Yellow several times, based on various pieces of intelligence information. There was only one incident when the threat level was raised to Red, and that was in August of 2006, following the previous month's bombings in London. The United States Federal Government decided to raise the terrorist level from Yellow to Red for all commercial flights from the U.K. to the U.S. as a precaution. All flights destined for or operating in the United States were raised to at least an Orange security level, regardless of their origin. The Red security level was lowered to Orange for all flights a few days later, though, based on new intelligence information.

Most of the security level advisory information and warnings relate to aviation. Higher security levels meant stricter security checks at airports, which in turn meant longer waits. The general public was not always aware of what the different security levels meant, though, as each color-coded level was rather ambiguous. With the new National Terrorism Advisory System, the government hopes to provide more accurate and detailed information to the general public regarding the current status of our Homeland Security.

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Source: EzineArticles
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