I’m Fightin’ Mad about Paris - Today, I plan to take a look at international security, and frankly, I am not even getting close to the line of invalidity. Security is an international problem, and security has been about terrorism since 9/11.

Industry Focus

I’m Fightin’ Mad about Paris

A few years ago I wrote an editorial that may have bordered on national security. I received several responses, one of which said I had crossed the line, and that my opinion about national security should not have been published. The reader asked to be removed from our readership list.

His name was deleted.

Today, I plan to take a look at international security, and frankly, I am not even getting close to the line of invalidity. Security is an international problem, and security has been about terrorism since 9/11.

So, with all due respect, I’m fightin’ mad about the events in Paris a couple months ago. I’m writing this commentary only a couple days after the Paris attacks, but it appears to you in January 2016. The cowardly attacks are fresh on my mind as of this writing.

I love Paris; I’ve been to the City of Lights on numerous occasions. There is nothing about Paris that I don’t enjoy. I applaud French President Francois Hollande for his swift air force response from these senseless attacks. I hope it is sustained, and that allies of the French will dig in and support them.

Recently, the French have been hit with six separate attacks from radical and extreme Muslims. You might remember the shooting at the Charlie Hebdo offices, and hours after that, a shooting at a convenience market in another arrondissement of the city.

All of this extreme violence is about security, but it seems impossible to stop something you can’t see. People will go about their daily routine, I suppose, just like terrorists go about their commitment to death and destruction.When terrorists strike, as they did in Paris, in a coordinated attack orchestrated by the Islamic State that left at least 128 people dead, the events are felt around the world as images and video of the aftermath pour through mass communication channels.

Terrorists choose their targets not based on military or political importance, but rather emotional and visceral impact. There are notable behavioral and psychological changes among victims and observers, including the effects of terrorist attacks on consumer behavior, specifically among those affected by extremist actions in Israel. After all, one of the aims of such actions is to disrupt economic and commercial activity. Researchers have found that consumers will change their habits in the wake of a terrorist attack, at times drastically.

This is about security because governments plan and train for such events. British intelligence has foiled seven attacks in 2015, including one in October. Though on a smaller scale, security on the global scene kept British citizens safe. British Prime Minister David Cameron could not, or would not, go in to detail.

Boris Johnson, the mayor of London, said, “What we are doing is everything we possibly can and, of course, it is right to say that although such an event of that particular type [the Paris Attacks] may still be unlucky, it would be absolutely wrong and irresponsible to try and rule it out completely.”

Security experts are now studying how to deal with a terrorist attack with a multiplicity of locations. Cameron said the “disease of Islamist extremist violence is a challenge we have to face.”

Britain plans to focus on several measures to counter radical extremism, including maintaining strong border controls, and having a chat with Vladimir Putin to unite Russia with the joint military effort against ISIL in Syria. A few bombs and missiles will not transform the situation; however, getting allies and all nations (Iran and Russia) in the region involved with improved security measures might.

Terrorism is not going away in the United States. Information shared among agencies and vigilance on proven security techniques will help. Though Congress is debating the PATRIOT Act and the USA FREEDOM Act, terrorists are not taking a break. The United States has to do even more with less when it comes to drawing lines to possible terrorist plots. Terrorists have threatened law enforcement more, lately, as shown by an attack in Boston on June 2, 2015. Usaamah Adebullah Rahin drew a knife and attacked police and FBI agents. His violent jihad was to behead police officers.

This attack marked the 69th publicly known attack since 9/11.

To secure the United States, more intelligence must be shared among agencies, and overcome inter-agency cultural barriers. The security industry in the United States has always had an eye toward stopping bad things before they happen. With 69 terror plots foiled, it’s the one that gets through that deprives people the ability to carry on with normal daily activities.

Furyk Nazar / Shutterstock.com

This article originally appeared in the January 2016 issue of Security Today.

  • Environmental Protection
  • Occupational Health & Safety
  • Infrastructure Solutions Group
  • Spaces4Learning
  • Campus Security & Life Safety