Conservative Viewpoints

"Government is not the solution…it is the problem" -Ronald Reagan

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We have reached 5 year anniversary of Homeland Security: now what?

Posted by Stephen on March 13, 2008

Former head of the Department of Homeland Security, Tom Ridge, walked across a stage and shook the hand of his former boss, President George Bush. The moment was a stoic reminder of where we have come since September 11, 2001. It is also a time to be thankful that America has not seen such a day since.

While it has become fashionable to bash President Bush, it is only those blinded by personal anger that can deny the success of the DHS. We have endured no attacks on American soil and with good reason.

“We have significantly reduced the risk of a major attack in the short term,” said current Secretary of Homeland Security, Michael Chertoff.

The President, with Ridge close by, continues to remind people that his job was to keep the bad people off American soil.

“One of the reasons we’re seeing more attacks in Europe is because they think it’s easier,” Chertoff said. He noted almost annual attacks since 2004 in Madrid, London and Glasgow and disrupted plots in Denmark, Germany, Italy, France and Portugal.

The President continues to push for the renewal of a bill that would provide immunity for companies willing to turn over information on customers.

“To stop new attacks on America, we need to know who the terrorists are talking to, what they’re saying and what they’re planning,” Bush told DHS employees. For that, the government needs the cooperation of private companies. Some of the companies, however, are being sued for billions of dollars for allegedly violating customers’ privacy.

In a column in the Washington Post, the President stated that proceeding with the lawsuit would be unfair and unwise. He reminded people that the bill unified terrorism databases and improved the detection of counterfeit travel documents to name two measure that have saved lives.

He also pointed to programs to prevent the smuggling of biological, chemical, radiological or nuclear weapons into the nation’s cities.

The most difficult challenge for the President is to convince the American public not to fall asleep at the wheel.

Al-Qaeda-inspired extremists are “continuing to refine themselves and improve themselves. If we don’t do more than we’re doing, if we stop, eventually that risk is going to start to increase,” Chertoff said.

The most difficult challenge for the American people is to convince the President that our civil liberties cannot be undermined because of foreign attacks. To do so would be to succumb to the violence of radical Islam and would signify a greater victory than thugs in Al Qaeda could ever realize on the battle field.

Somewhere there is a balance to be found and it is the responsibility of elected officials to find that common ground.

Stephen Winslow is the executive editor of Conservative Viewpoints.


2 Responses to “We have reached 5 year anniversary of Homeland Security: now what?”

  1. Phil said

    Here is my 2nd blog

  2. It’s great to see a site dedicated to the brave men and women that serve and protect the people of the Valley.

    Thanks Phil.

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