Morning Roundup for July 21st, 2009 - Featured News and Public Events
From the Wall Street Journal - An op-ed co-written by Secretary Napolitano and Attorney General Holder:
Five years ago this week, the bipartisan National Commission on Terrorist Acts Upon the United States released the "9/11 Commission Report," a comprehensive review of the circumstances and actions leading up to, including, and following the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. The Report's concluding chapter offered a set of recommendations to dramatically refocus the federal government's efforts to prevent and prepare for future terrorist attacks.
While the scope of the Commission's recommendations was comprehensive, the ultimate goal was straightforward: in order to protect the American people, the many components within our government responsible for national security and law enforcement had to break old habits and communicate with one another more effectively.
Though clear in principle, the goal of interagency cooperation had proven elusive in
practice. Before the attacks of 9/11, federal counterterrorism efforts were impeded by the failure to share key information. As a result, law enforcement officials-the men and women who often serve as the first line of defense against potential attacks-did not always receive the tools and intelligence they needed.
From USA Today, on immigration enforcement:
The Department of Homeland Security is changing the way it tackles illegal immigration, in many cases remaking or rescinding Bush administration policies.
The changes put heavier emphasis on employers, including more investigations of hiring records and fines for violations, says John Morton, assistant secretary for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in DHS.
"We have to come to grips with the market for illegal labor," he says. "To get there, we have to move beyond individual cases."
The arrests of hundreds of illegal workers at a time in raids at factories and meatpacking plants were a visible component of President George W. Bush's immigration enforcement strategy.
The largest workplace raid under the Obama administration was in February, when 28 illegal immigrants were arrested at an engine manufacturer in Bellingham, Wash.
Guidelines issued since then make it clear that raids targeting employees won't be a priority. The agency still will arrest illegal immigrants as it conducts investigations, Morton says, but "we are going to place our focus . first and foremost on the employer."
From the Associated Press, on a first for the Coast Guard and for the First Lady:
In a first for a first lady, Michelle Obama is sponsoring a future Coast Guard cutter.
Construction of the cutter Stratton began Monday in Pascagoula, Miss., when the U.S. Coast Guard and Northrop Grumman laid the ship's keel at the defense contractor's shipyard.
As sponsor, Mrs. Obama promises to be involved in the life of what the service is calling a "national security cutter."
The White House says Mrs. Obama's decision is an extension of her commitment to support servicemembers and their families. The Coast Guard says it's the first time a president's wife has signed on as a sponsor.
Stratton is named after Capt. Dorothy Stratton. She was director of the Guard's women's Reserve during World War II.
2 PM EDT
National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD) Office of Cybersecurity and Communications Director Sean McGurk will testify before the House Committee on Homeland 311 Cannon House Office Building
2 PM EDT
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Acting Deputy Director Mike Aytes will testify before the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration, Refugees and Border Security about E-Verify
226 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Published by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Washington, D.C.