Homeland Security

THE ADVISORY PANEL TO ASSESS DOMESTIC RESPONSE CAPABILITIES FOR TERRORISM INVOLVING WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION

V. Forging America's New Normalcy: Securing Our Homeland, Protecting Our Liberty

December 15, 2003

The Advisory Panel to Assess Domestic Response Capabilities for Terrorism Involving Weapons of Mass Destruction was established by Section 1405 of the National Defense Authorization Act for 1999, Public Law 105-261 (H.R. 3616, 105th Congress, 2nd Section, October 17, 1998). The panel was directed to submit, beginning in December 1999, three annual reports to the President and the Congress assessing how well the Federal government was supporting State and local efforts to combat catastrophic terrorism. The panel was also charged to recommend strategies for ensuring fully effective local response capabilities. As a result of the attacks on September 11, 2001, the Congress extended the panel's charter with the requirement to submit two additional annual reports on December 15 of 2002 and 2003, respectively.

Because of the inextricable relationships between all components of the nation's efforts to counter the risks of terrorism-awareness, prevention, preparedness, response, and recovery-the panel felt it was critically important to look more broadly at all Federal support for combating terrorism. Thus, its work has reflected comprehensive analyses and recommendations across the full spectrum of efforts to combat terrorism.

This document represents the fifth and final report of the panel. The strategic vision, themes, and recommendations of the Fifth Annual Report to the President and the Congress of the Advisory Panel to Assess Domestic Response Capabilities for Terrorism Involving Weapons of Mass Destruction were motivated by the unanimous view of the panel that this report should attempt to define a future state of security against terrorism-one that the panel has chosen to call "America's New Normalcy."

The Advisory Panel to Assess Domestic Response Capabilities for Terrorism Involving Weapons on Mass Destruction was created by the Congress in 1999 to assess Federal efforts to assist State and local responders in combating terrorism. The inextricable relationships between all components of the nation's efforts-local, State, and Federal governments, the private sector, and the public at large-to counter terrorist threats caused the panel to look broadly at the issues.

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