Home
In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Jan. 15, 2009 / 19 Teves 5769

National security shouldn't be left on the back burner

By Jonathan Gurwitz


Printer Friendly Version
Email this article

http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | It's the economy, stupid — of course. As a recession threatens to degenerate into something rivaling the Great Depression, Congress, President-elect Barack Obama and the American public are understandably focused on jobs and domestic issues.


A report issued last month by the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism is a reminder, however, that terrorism is still an international growth industry.


The commission, modeled on the 9-11 Commission, is bipartisan and congressionally mandated. Headed by former Sen. Bob Graham, a Florida Democrat, it builds on the 9-11 Commission's work in assessing the threat to the United States posed by the spread of weapons of mass destruction.


The final report of the 9-11 Commission warned: "The greatest danger of another catastrophic attack in the United States will materialize if the world's most dangerous terrorists acquire the world's most dangerous weapons." Its successor commission assesses that danger is now more ominous than ever.


In a 1998 interview, Osama bin Laden declared the acquisition of weapons of mass destruction a religious duty. After the al-Qaida bombings of the U.S. embassies in Kenya and Tanzania the same year, he told his followers it was their duty to kill Americans, civilians and military, "in any country it is possible to do it."


That was in the pre-9-11 era. After commercial airliners were used as missiles against skyscrapers, there are no longer any excuses for intelligence failures of imagination. On this point, the new WMD commission report is clear: "Unless the world community acts decisively and with great urgency, it is more likely than not that a weapon of mass destruction will be used in a terrorist attack somewhere in the world by the end of 2013."


The Hollywood scenario for such an attack is the celebrated suitcase bomb, inevitably procured from greedy and embittered scientists in Russia or the former Soviet republics. The more viable threat of nuclear weapons falling into the hands of terrorists emerges from the rogue governments of North Korea and Iran and from non-state actors such as the A.Q. Khan network in Pakistan.


The vision of a mushroom cloud rising over an American city provokes a startling image. The U.S. government has, accordingly, focused its counterproliferation efforts on nuclear terrorism. But the WMD commission suggests a greater threat comes from bioterrorism.


Like nuclear materials and technology, biological pathogens are poorly secured around the globe. Those pathogens, though, are potentially far cheaper to purchase and far easier to transport across international borders than a radioactive weapon.


Even in the United States, the Government Accountability Office found potentially lethal security breaches. Inspections of the nation's five Biosafety Level 4 labs, the highest level of biological containment, including the Southwest Foundation for Biomedical Research in San Antonio, uncovered vulnerabilities that could allow the deadliest top-security pathogens to fall into terrorist hands.


If the commission had issued its report before the November election, critics would have denounced it as an exercise in fearmongering. At least, however, it would have been a topic of discussion. It's not at all clear that Congress or the incoming Obama administration — fixated on the economy — are even aware of its findings, let alone prepared to act on its recommendations.


"The intent of this report is neither to frighten nor to reassure the American people about the current state of terrorism and weapons of mass destruction," the commission stated. "It is to underscore that the U.S. government has yet to fully adapt to these circumstances, and to convey the sobering reality that the risks are growing faster than our multilayered defenses. Our margin of safety is shrinking, not growing."


Economic security is a component of national security, yes. Al-Qaida terrorists, however, aren't seeking bailouts.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment by clicking here.

JWR contributor Jonathan Gurwitz, a columnist for the San Antonio Express-News, is a co-founder and twice served as Director General of the Future Leaders of the Alliance program at NATO Headquarters in Brussels, Belgium. In 1986 he was placed on the Foreign Service Register of the U.S. State Department.

Jonathan Gurwitz Archives


© 2009, Jonathan Gurwitz

Columnists

Toons

Lifestyles