Defining Homeland Security: Analysis and Congressional Considerations

by Sabrina I. Pacifici on January 9, 2013

CRS – Defining Homeland Security: Analysis and Congressional Considerations, Shawn Reese, Analyst in Emergency Management and Homeland Security Policy. January 8, 2013

  • “Varied homeland security definitions and missions may impede the development of a coherent national homeland security strategy, and may hamper the effectiveness of congressional oversight. Definitions and missions are part of strategy development. Policymakers develop strategy by identifying national interests, prioritizing goals to achieve those national interests, and arraying instruments of national power to achieve the national interests. Developing an effective homeland security strategy, however, may be complicated if the key concept of homeland security is not defined and its missions are not aligned and synchronized among different federal entities with homeland security responsibilities. This report discusses the evolution of national and DHS-specific homeland security strategic documents and their homeland security definitions and missions, and analyzes the policy question of how varied homeland security definitions and missions may affect the development of national homeland security strategy. This report, however, does not examine DHS implementation of strategy.”
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