Posts Tagged ‘Preparedness’

U.S. National Security Forecast: The Next Four Years

December 12, 2012

The election is over.  President Obama’s administration will be in charge of national security policy for the next four years.  The product of this tenure will have long lasting consequences for American security, for good or for ill.

The next issue of the National Strategy Forum Review presents a comprehensive and succinct overview of what lies ahead for the next four years—trends, options, and consequences.  It is our forecast of the major issues and challenges that will shape U.S. national security discussion in 2013 and beyond.  Articles in this issue include:

  • The Threat Array: Knowns and Unknowns: Given that there are many unknown emerging threats, it may be prudent to develop national resilience rather than to counter every known threat to U.S. national security.
  • Military Policy in a Time of Fiscal Retrenchment: The U.S. military is in a state of flux as a result of the Afghan and Iraq wars. U.S. military resources and doctrine must adapt to asymmetry, terrorism, insurgency, and a constrained defense budget.
  • Pivot to Asia: Calculus and Consequences: The American destiny may lie more with countries in the Asia-Pacific than with traditional Western European orientation.  What are the consequences and how can this shift be managed?
  • Flashpoint Mediterranean: Middle Eastern conflicts are continuing and are unresolved.  There is a Mediterranean connection that should be explored, resulting in potential amelioration of the conflict.  The realistic goal is political stability rather than peace.
  • The National Security Benefit of Good Neighbors – Canada And Mexico: America’s backyard is composed of Canada, Mexico, and Latin America.  These states are expanding their economic and political stability.  Although the U.S. has not been an exceptionally good neighbor, there is opportunity for the U.S. to initiate actions that could result in an enhanced relationship.
  • Proactive Asymmetry: To counter ongoing terrorist threats, the U.S. needs to “think small”—an asymmetric, proactive offensive doctrine.

The National Strategy Forum mission is to assist our members to become more informed about U.S. national security issues through our lecture series, conferences, and publications.  It is our hope that this new issue of the National Strategy Forum Review proves useful to you.

National Security Forecast: The Next Four Years can be read online at the link here.

Emergency Preparation

March 22, 2011

The devastating tsunami that hit Japan last week is a reminder for all of us to take stock of our emergency plans.  Japan is one of the most advanced countries in the world.  Its infrastructure is designed to withstand incredible stress, and its citizens are well trained for emergencies.  The tsunami caused incredible damage, but it could have been even worse had its citizens not known how to respond effectively.

An article by STRATFOR titled “Taming Chaos with a Personal Plan” offers a prudent reminder for individual citizens to familiarize themselves with national and local emergency procedures.  For those living in Chicago and other parts of the US, how prepared are you and your loved ones from unexpected emergencies?

The National Strategy Forum has long promoted personal safety and emergency planning procedures.  Our 2003 report titled “Prudent Preparation: What Can I Do in the Event of a Mass Casualty Incident” provides practical resources and information for individuals and families to develop a plan.  In addition, a copy of the 2007 McCormick Foundation report titled “Civic Leaders Speak Out About Emergency Preparedness” provides information for both families and communities to build stronger emergency responses.  Finally, for parents interested in school safety procedures in the event of an emergency, the National Strategy Forum publication titled “School Safety in the 21st Century: Adapting to New Security Challenges Post-9/11” may be informative for evaluating your child’s school system.

Government emergency management is vital in the immediate aftermath of an event.  However, personal safety and security is the ultimately the responsibility of the individual.  Being prepared and having a plan multiplies the efforts of local and federal government in response to catastrophic events.  Take the time to evaluate your level of preparation and the threat environment that in which you reside; the future is unknown, but early preparation mitigates the consequences of unexpected events.