Global Terror Casualties Require America’s Vigilance at Home

December 15, 2016 Last Updated: December 15, 2016

During my presentations and published works over the last 20 years, I have continually encouraged leadership, vigilance, and collaboration.

These principles are critical to protecting America’s interests and safeguarding our homeland.

In my Nov. 19, 2015 article for the Epoch Times titled “Paris Terror Demands America’s Vigilance,” I called upon America to enhance security. 

Security must include ongoing training, certifications for the public and private sector, preparedness initiatives, and collaboration.

The article addressed the reprehensible attacks throughout Paris on Nov. 13, 2015 and stressed vigilance.

My definition of terrorism was memorialized in the article as “a contemptuous evil against life, justice, and charity as well as a cowardly assault against human rights, moral law, and the dignity of humankind.”

The article also condemned those who use religion to commit atrocities.  It stressed that “the true hallmark of any person who proclaims a life of faith is manifested through honoring the dignity of every human person.”

Terrorism was described as the heinous, barbaric, and cowardly act it is because it desecrates the sacred.

Relentless Wave of Terror

The accelerating terror attacks decimating families and communities worldwide continues with no end in sight.

Attacks throughout the Middle East, Africa, and Europe remind us of the meltdown of moral decency inflicting humanity and the consequences of unleashed depravity.

The despicable realities of terrorism are continually manifested when people are attacked while assembling for the most ordinary of human activities.

Recently, horrific blasts occurred in major cities thousands of miles apart with innocent people paying the ultimate price by these senseless attacks.

Terror attacks are unceasingly reminding us that anyone can be a victim.   An attack can occur anyplace, and at anytime.

Places once considered sacrosanct, including parks, schools, workplaces, shopping centers, and even houses of worship are potential terror targets.

Recent Terror Attacks

The globe has become a very small place, and although these attacks occurred on distant shores, they remind us that humankind is inseparable.  Each person who walks this earth is mystically connected by the bonds of humanity and all people of good will deserve security.

Vigilance must be the focus of our activities and each of us is called to have the mindset of an ethical guardian.

These recent terror attacks must be reminders to remain vigilant and continually heighten our security awareness and preparedness:

Istanbul, Turkey–on Dec. 10, two blasts, about a mile apart killed at least 44 people, most of them police officers.  Additionally, about 150 people were wounded.  The attacks took place after a heavily attended soccer game.  This attack is a reminder to law enforcement that they are often a target.  Police follow strict security protocols regarding  their assembling in large groups in easily accessible public domains.  It is also critical that law enforcement responders to incidents remain highly vigilant. The first incident might have been planned to set the stage for a secondary attack against them.

Cairo, Egypt–a bomb detonated in the women’s section of St. Mark’s Coptic Orthodox Cathedral during Sunday morning mass.  The explosion killed at least 25 people and injured dozens more. 

Magadishu, Somalia–at least 20 people were killed and 15 injured after a car filled with explosives rammed into the main entrance of a port.  Like the Istanbul attack, this also targeted police according to a law enforcement official.

Terror attacks on distant shores cannot be understood as insignificant to America.  These attacks remind us of the heinous consequences of terrorism.  Every attack demands assessment and must encourage our nation to continuously review and enhance security.

America’s security mindset must include hardening soft targets with implementing sound countermeasures.  These include security vulnerability assessments, background checks, investigations, training, warning sign reporting and swift intervention, physical security, personnel security, procedural security, and informational / cybersecurity.

Strengthening America’s Trauma Centers

As I conclude this article, I would like to address our nation’s trauma centers and encourage America to strengthen their security and resources to serve communities.  Our trauma centers will be critical in the event of a terror attack.

The report titled “U.S. Trauma Center Preparedness for a Terrorist Attack in the Community” is a must read.

This report, developed by the National Foundation for Trauma, deserves study by law enforcement officials, private security professionals, public safety representatives, and hospital administrators.

Recommendations in the report showing areas for improvement include the following:

  • Provide adequate funding to trauma centers based on their proximity to hazards and threats.
  • Spread authority and information about planning and implementation.
  • Improve surge and decontamination capacity, particularly in regions with high vulnerability.
  • Plan for family members of patients and staff.
  • Sustain operational capacity for more than 3 days.
  • Provide after-care for chronically ill patients and displaced persons.

Aside from these recommendations, the report highlights commonalities of exceptional disaster programs worthy of notice.

These programs include exemplary leadership principles, significant and ongoing disaster preparedness planning, and extraordinary collaboration with the public, private, and military.

America must remain vigilant, with eyes wide open to incidents world-wide and on our homeland. 

We must remember that to be forewarned is to be forearmed.

Vincent J. Bove, CPP, is a national speaker and author on issues critical to America. Bove is a recipient f the FBI Director’s Community Leadership Award for combating crime and violence and is a former confidant of the New York Yankees. His newest book is “Listen To Their Cries.” For more information, see www.vincentbove.como

Vincent J. Bove

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.