2011 03 10 Homeland Security

2011 03 10 Homeland Security - Homeland Security &...

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Lecture by Tobin Smith Vice President for Policy Association of American Universities University of Michigan PUBPOL 481/PHYSICS 481 March 10, 2011
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Why do we care so much about Homeland Security!
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Policy Context Prior to 9/11, there had really not really been a major attack against the U.S. on its home soil during the last century (exceptions: Pearl Harbor; 1995 Oklahoma City bombing). Terrorism - because the specific threat is unclear, it is easy to overreact to potential threats (low tech vs. high tech). It is critical to assess the vulnerabilities and try to anticipate the potential for specific attacks, but this is very difficult. Policy makers often search for easy solutions to show they are doing something. These solutions can have unintended consequences for personal freedoms and for science. Balancing security with protection of individual freedoms. Science – a blessing or a curse!
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How is Science Viewed in the Post 9/11 World? As part of the problem…
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How is Science be Viewed in the Post 9/11 World? ... or as part of the solution!
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Who can best assess the security risks associated with science? Possible Answers: 1) Scientists who know very little about security; or 2) The intelligence and security community who often know very little about science; or 3) Elected officials who often know very little about either, but have to demonstrate that they are taking action to keep their constituents and the nation safe.
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Political Reality Since 9/11/01 9/11 created new concerns about who is conducting research on campuses Universities have had to be more vigilant over security of research facilities, programs and dual-use information Greater scrutiny of foreign students and faculty before they are admitted into the U.S. Several new pieces of legislation enacted related to homeland security that impact science
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Scientists: Security Risks or Saviors? Ø Scientists have often been viewed as potential threats to U.S. security because of the knowledge they possess. Ø This was particularly true during the McCarthy Era. -- J. Robert Oppenheimer, Director of the Manhattan Project -- Edmond Condon, Director of the Natl. Bureau of Standards -- Linus Paulings, Nobel Prize winning Chemist -- Paul Dirac, British Nobel Laureate -- Tsien Hsue-Shen, U.S. rocket scientist deported to China Ø More recent case of Wen Ho Lee, Physicist at Los Alamos
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Science Policy Issues and Homeland Security Role of Science in Homeland Security Department of Homeland Security and its role on Research Funding Issues Visas, Immigration and Student Tracking Select Biological Agents and Chemical Security Export Controls
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Role of Science in Homeland Security
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Making the Nation Safer: Relevant NAS Reports: http://www.nap.edu/terror/ Nuclear and radiological threats, e.g. improvised nuclear devices and
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2011 03 10 Homeland Security - Homeland Security &...

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