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DHS and Intelligence: Terrorism Essay

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Updated: Jun 6th, 2022

Terrorism is a set of violent acts of assassination, hostage-taking, which are committed by a political or criminal organization in order to influence the leaders of their own or a foreign country. Another definition means that terrorism as one of the options for tactics of political struggle associated with the use of ideologically motivated violence. In order to prevent a major terrorist attack at Staples Center Sports Arena that is planned in three stages, it is important to conduct a thorough analysis. The attack is planned in September, and the initial phase will involve three to five suicide bombers, which will be followed by one or two large vehicle bombs (LVB) in parking areas. The final stage will take place in the lobby of the nearest emergency hospital, where a series of bombs will be detonated.

The fight against terrorism is the activity of authorized federal executive bodies, carried out using intelligence, counterintelligence, operational investigative, investigative, military, and special measures aimed at solving various problems. The latter includes the identification, prevention and suppression of terrorist activities, and the disclosure and investigation of crimes of a terrorist nature. The organization of the fight against terrorism requires a comprehensive approach to the analysis of the sources and subjects of terrorist activity, a clear definition of the functions and areas of responsibility of each item of the struggle, timely determination of priorities in solving the tasks. This process also involves improving the organization of the construction and interaction of operational, military, and investigative units (Coaffee, 2016). All activities are based on the implementation of the staff principle of organizing the management of counter-terrorism operations and providing resources, including modern hardware and software systems.

The initial step of the emergency plan will include the correct placement of visitor and LVB screening checkpoints. Visitor screening devices will be placed at every open entrance points, whereas unnecessary ones will be deliberately closed. It is stated that mandatory evacuation distance for a suicide bomber is 110ft, which means that people awaiting the screening must be put in line (“Bomb threat stand-off card,” n.d.). In the case of LVB, it can manifest itself in SUV or semi-trailer, which have different explosive capacities. The vehicle checkpoints will primarily stop and investigate any vehicle, such as SUV, small delivery truck, container truck, or semi-trailer (“Bomb threat stand-off card,” n.d.). Checkpoints for vehicle screening will be located near the closest parking lots, which are on streets Chick Hearn Court, L.A. Live Way, and Georgia streets. It is stated that the largest form of LVB, such as semi-trailer, has a mandatory evacuation zone of 1570ft (“Bomb threat stand-off card,” n.d.). Therefore, the checkpoints need to be located at least 1600ft further than the entrance of parking lots.

Moreover, it is important to make the necessary preparations for a potential attack on the nearest emergency hospital. The latter is Dignity Health – California Hospital Medical Center, which is located almost two blocks away from the Staples Center. The parking lot and entrance to the hospital need to have screening checkpoints in order to prevent the third stage of the attack. The lobby of the hospital needs to be especially guarded, and the number of people needs to be minimized. A wide range of equipment will be required in order to set up an effective screening process. The Federal Agencies involved are the Federal Emergency Management Agency of California, DOHS Police, and LAPD. Vehicle X-ray systems will be needed for the SUV, truck, and semi-trailer screening. Jersey Barriers will be placed near the parking lot entrances in order to prevent easy access. Portal monitors will be placed at the parking lot entrances and Staples Center entrances in order to detect explosives and other dangerous devices.

Although the best course of action is prevention and associated measures, worst-case scenarios need to be also considered, where the terrorists must be eliminated before they can execute their plan. Thus, the operation will involve Special Weapons Assault Team (SWAT) and Bomb Squads. The SWAT is also needed in case of new information regarding the location of the terrorist group arrives, where the team will storm and eliminate the threat before its occurrence. The Bomb Squad will be necessary to defuse the explosives in the vehicles and suicide bombers in case the latter will be successfully incapacitated. In addition, the operation will need assistance from the United States National Guard. Specifically, the aid of the Medical Trauma Team will be necessary to manage the destruction caused by one or all of the explosions. The team will be placed at parking lots, Staples Center entrances, and hospital lobby entrances for five days during the major event that will take place at the stadium.

Department of Homeland Security will be actively working with the CIA and FBI. The overall frequency of reports needs to be daily throughout the entire month of September. Law Enforcement procedures will involve the identification of key players and active analysis of their actions. The main goal will be finding their operation and planning location in order to eliminate the targets and confiscate explosives. The information regarding the operation and plan will be shared primarily with the Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence and the National Security Agency/Central Security Service. These intelligence community agencies will be actively cooperating with the emergency department in order to ensure that the prevention wall is foolproof. The information will contain the potential individual suspects, vehicle tracking, and team locations.

The security and screening procedures at major ports of entry need to be doubled down because there is a high chance of terrorists coming from other states or countries. In addition, the explosive might also arrive from outside of Los-Angeles. In the case of the airport, the agency involved in the operation is the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), which will be extra cautious regarding the newly arriving individuals. In the case of sea ports, United States Coast Guard will be involved in order to check sea ports for potential threats. In the case of land crossings, LAPD will be put at major city entrance highways, and thorough checks and screenings will be conducted regarding various SUVs, trucks, and semi-trailers.

In conclusion, it is important to understand that the prevention of terrorism is an activity that includes a set of measures aimed at identifying and eliminating the causes and conditions conducive to the implementation of terrorist activities. Prevention of terrorism is carried out in several main areas, such as the organization and application on a systematic basis of counteraction to the ideology of terrorism and extremism. It also includes improving the antiterrorist security of potential targets of terrorist aspirations. In addition, it is important to strengthen the monitoring of compliance with administrative, legal, and other regimes that contribute to countering terrorism.

References

Bomb threat stand-off card. (n.d.). 2020, Web.

Coaffee, J. (2016). Terrorism, risk and the global city: Towards urban resilience. Routledge.

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IvyPanda. 2022. "DHS and Intelligence: Terrorism." June 6, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/dhs-and-intelligence-terrorism/.

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