CIAG Homeland Security and Terrorism Program
The Homeland Security Policy Institute at GWU and CIAG presented to the Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs
April 3 - 5, 2005
Hostage to Terrorism: Governmental and Non-Governmental
The 2005 CIAG conference looked at the important issues relating to hostage taking in a terrorist situation. The primary case analyzed was the Nicholas Berg incident in Iraq in the summer of 2004.
The Critical Incident Analysis Group focuses on time-limited, newsworthy, and provocative events. Events like the hostage taking incidents in Iraq that were widely publicized around the world in 2004 are examples of issues CIAG focuses on. Such events fall under the classification of critical incident because the events create fear and challenge the trust societies have for governments.
The Critical Incident Analysis Group's Homeland Security and Terrorism Program analyzes terrorist related issues that affect homeland security. For example, in April of 2000 CIAG convened its spring conference in order to examine the threats to symbols of American democracy. The conference examined the architecture of terrorism and the symbolism of its targets. A primary goal of the conference was to understand how American society and its political and opinion leaders will respond to the threat or act of terror. The conference found that how much damage a terrorist act ultimately causes is something society determines, not the terrorist. The terrorist controls what he chooses to destroy, but he doesn't control how much his act will undermine democratic practices and beliefs, public trust, a national sense of common values, goals and a common destiny. All those outcomes will be a reflection of the state of society’s resillience and the quality of its leadership.
Although there is by nature a tension that exists between the business sector, academe and government, it can also be understood as a necessary balance. Indeed, in the post-9-11 world, the business sector has a significant role and responsibility towards energy, infrastructure, finance, communications, medical care and information technology. This input and relationship can facilitate operational strategies that must be developed and employed through collaboration with academe and government.
For more information on the 2000 conference, "Threats to Symbols of American Democracy", click ( here).
For more information on other conferences related to Homeland Security and Terrorism click ( here).
Hearing before the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental
United States Senate