Book Review On Terror, Security And Money

Published: 2021-06-21 23:41:18
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The September 11, 2001 (9/11) terrorist attack in the United States of America has brought this common and urgent query if the country is safe to all the citizens who live in for a better living. Asking this question is wrong; America is still a safe place to everyone. It is safer since the government has a massive increased in homeland security and the expenditures are high. The best and correct query is that, if the expenditures in the security have its worth. Howard Kunreuther, analyst, raised the central question after the 9/11 terrorist attack that how much do the government is willing to pay for a small reduction in probabilities happened to be extremely low (Mueller & Stewart, 2011, p1). Mueller and Stewart principally focus their concentrations to the expenditures in the homeland security with a large number of security contractors that became rich in the bargain. Homeland security is an essential issue after the 9/11 terrorist attack. “The emphasis after the 9/11 terrorist attack is about the risks, benefits, and the costs of homeland security; managing homeland security programs, with the potential to redirect every effort performed by the government toward a more productive and a cost – effective course, and a safer country.”
People need information and this information is a challenge in the part of the government, to tell the people without terrifying them. Bruce Schneier, an analyst, identifies worst – case thinking; the possible outcome, speculation fro risk, and fear for reasons. Every decision has its costs and benefits, rewards, and risks. An advocate of an action proves that the terrifying scenario is impossible. President George W. Bush has outlined a new strategy for national security, stating that United States people will not let the enemies strike them first. The people, with the help of the government, take anticipating actions to defend every individual strongly and the country as a whole (Mueller & Stewart, 2011, p16). The federal government enacted a new legislation in response to the 9/11 terrorist attack; to increase the safety of the air passenger (Clarke, 2005). President Bush signed into law, the Aviation and Transportation Security Act (ATSA). The act established a Transportation Security Administration (TSA) that consolidates security within the Department of Transportation (DOT). The law mandates several vital changes in the civil aviation security procedures, the federalization of passenger security screening to all U. S. Commercial airports and to require screening all checked baggage. TSA oversees security operations and implements the mandates to all commercial airports in the United States.
Mueller and Stewart indicated that there is over a trillion dollars spent for a safer America. There are several measures installed in different areas in the country, one of those is the posting of one or two security guards on every entrance of the establishments or buildings for safety. There are several steps relatively neglected that is crucial for risk – assessments to any real credibility. These are establishing and quantifying threat likelihood, evaluating risks, setting risk acceptance criteria, and establishing risk to reduce for a new security measures (Mueller & Stewart, 2011, p13). The United States government has increased its expenditures for dealing with the terrorism act and the federal expenditures on domestic homeland security increases by 360 dollars after 10 years. These incredible statistics shows that the funds are not spend effectively. As a result, there are billions of dollars wasted annually, with an inappropriate security practice that do not bring about the desired results (Mueller, Stewart, 2011, p 24). In addition, the effectiveness of the funds is indeed huge and substantial to the possibility to organize and make it happen. It is true that the country is safer despite the incredible amount spent by the government for overall security.
Both Mueller and Stewart provide the detailed breakdown on the costs of this massive security operation. There is a tendency for policy to improve according to its demand to those who advocate security concerns; state of affairs on homeland security has no real observations or guidance given to its real results of data gathered by intelligence officials. The result investigations show that there are at least 5,000 Al Qaeda operatives in the country, when New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani mentioned about the rate of terrorist attacks that increased (Mueller & Stewart, 2011, p58). However, the internal security claims that the experts have clearly proved no justification to say the least. The United States government has proven an act to counter such claims. It started to spend massive amounts of money in order to deal with the terrorism issue respectively. During the tenth anniversary of the 9/11, terrorist attacks there are claims that federal expenditure on domestic homeland security increased; the federal and national expenditure has increased by over 110 billion dollars, while expenditure by state and local agencies has also increased by at least 100 billion dollars (Mueller, Stewart, 2011, p 77). The costs for other important aspects of internal security such as crime and theft, federal spending on counter terrorism activity has increased enormously since 2001. It indicates that this sector has exceeded spending on risks such as fraud and violent crime by at least 15 billion U. S. dollar. Thus, the grossly overrated and heightened fear of terrorism has seen a vast drop of expenditures resulted in an increase of the crimes in certain depressed areas of the country. All these expenditures stated as opportunity costs, the situation in homeland security since 9/11 terrorist attack has a gross inflation rates.
In addition, the U. S. Government on wars in Iraq and Afghanistan that lost thousands of lives brought no concrete results to its course apart from the billions of dollars spent over the years in these wars. However, the country is still positive in terms of financial aspect; it implies that the outcome has its justification since the country is safer. The other countries threatened by the terrorist such as Britain and Australia have dramatically increased their expenditures to counter terrorism activities (Simon et al., 2007). Although Osama Bin Laden has, the objective to destroy the economy of the US government, he is unsuccessful.
Accordingly, the development of the process and methodology to actually assess national risk is one of the most important and critical elements in the implementation of a risk management process. The ultimate goal is to improve the ability of decision makers so that they can make rational judgements on the tradeoffs required between those courses of action that actually manage homeland security and the risks involved respectively (Mueller & Stewart, 2011). However, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) emphasizes that there is no correlation between the risk and quantity of amount. A detailed analysis of these reports as issued by the DHS demonstrates that there is practically no reference to the possibility of an imminent terrorist attack with the words high, imminent, and emerging as often used; it offers no threat or to counter the threat. Several times the DHS has ignored specific calls by the government to conduct impact assessments (DHS, 2009). They also discuss the introduction of the controversial full body security scanners expected to cost over 1.2 billion dollars annually to implement. It reveals that the government accountability office specifies a cost benefit analysis of this new technology. DHS ignored some requests for a cost benefit analysis for the scanning of US outbound containers. The DHS in both cases are burdens on the resources of the agencies involved.
At present, Americans tend to feel safer in the after 9/11 terrorist attack, this book clearly demonstrates that the expenditures on counter terrorism activity is definitely not worth it. The trillion dollars spent in the decade following 9/11 definitely increases in the past years and brought the situation to a quite unsustainable level. The authors skilfully demonstrate that the DHS supports this unsustainable situation with full efforts made to sustain a substantial budget. This is to implement costly and controversial anti – terrorism measures such as such as full body security scanning or screening in all commercial airports. Muller and Stewart provide facts to sustain their ideas and the book is useful enough to anybody interested in the subject. It certainly boosts everyone to make decisions and prioritize things.
Simon, D., Blalock, G., &Kadiyali, V. (2007). The Impact of Post-9/11 Airport Security
Measures on the Demand for Air Travel: Journal of Law and Economics, 50(4). p731
Clarke, R. (2005). Ten Years Later. Atlantic January to February, p61-77
Partnering to Enhance Protection and Resiliency, Washington, DC. Retrieved from
Mueller, J. & Stewart, M. (2011). TERROR, SECURITY, AND MONEY: Balancing the
Risks, Benefits, and Costs of Homeland Security, Oxford University Press

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