From: Homeland Security News Wire
To: Scott Jenkins,
Subject: $5B counterterrorism fund questioned | Bioterrorism as vote fraud | Avian flu menace
Date: Fri Jun 13 11:30:22 MDT 2014
Body:
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DAILY REPORT
Friday 13 June 2014 vol. 8 no. 136

In Today's Issue

Terrorism
Administration’s $5 billion counterterrorism (CT) fund met with questions, uncertainty

The White House's proposed $5 billion counterterrorism (CT) fund designed to help U.S. officials train and equip allied countries to eliminate elements of al-Qaeda or organized terrorism. Some lawmakers and officials familiar with the issue are unsure whether the funds would be directed toward Syrian rebels, or distributed among African countries. Others are worried that the program may interfere with other initiatives meant to accomplish similar objectives.

Biometrics
Digital birth card to help Kenya fight terrorist infiltration

The influx of immigrants from neighboring African states includes Islamic militants, some belonging to terrorist group al-Shabaab. Maintaining proper records of every Kenyan and immigrant will offer authorities leads on who is in the country and potentially a threat to national security. Some suggests the adoption of a Digital Birth Card (DBC) as a way to curb Kenya's terrorism fears.

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Bioterrorism
Bioterrorism as a voter fraud mechanism

In the early 1980s, a guru named Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh and his hundreds of followers, called Rajneeshees, relocated from India to a 64,000-acre ranch in Wasco County, Oregon, a rural area of roughly 21,000 people at the time. Rajneesh's plan to build more houses on the ranch to accommodate his followers was denied by county officials. Rajneesh had an idea: to win seats on the County Commission, the Rajneeshees decided to suppress non-Rajneeshees voters by poisoning thousands of residents with Salmonella prior to election day, and then recruit thousands of homeless people from nearby cities and offering them food if they voted for Rajneeshees-backed candidates.

 

Border security
1.6%: CBP data show dysfunctional Internal Affairs
By Robert Lee Maril

The good news is that James F. Tomscheck, the head of internal affairs for U.S. Customs and Border Patrol since 2006, was reassigned last week to another job within his agency. The bad news is that CBP internal affairs supports a decades-old culture mired in cronyism and secrecy. Last month, for example, CBP finally disclose data about internal affairs investigations into allegations of abuse by its own agents. Even so, the numbers are so out of whack that this federal report easily might be confused with the Chinese government’s recent version of the violence at Tiananmen Square in 1989: out of 809 complaints of abuse by CBP agents from January of 2009 to January of 2012, only an astounding thirteen required disciplinary action against CBP agents. The public is supposed to believe, in other words, that under Tomscheck’s leadership, a mere 1.6 percent of the charges against his agents over a three-year period had merit.

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Floods
Could devastating floods help Bosnians heal their war wounds?
By Damir Mitric

The violent breakup of Yugoslavia in the 1990s and the subsequent war in Bosnia between 1992 and 1995 took the lives of more than 100,000 Bosnians and left two million homeless. Two decades later those survivors have been forced once again to abandon their homes -- this time by floodwaters rather than bullets. The heaviest rainfalls ever recorded in the Balkans have led to catastrophic flooding in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Swelled by weeks of rain, the devastating floodwaters swamped more than 60 percent of the country last month, destroying more than 100,000 homes and displacing around 950,000 citizens. The floods also damaged vital infrastructure, destroyed industrial assets, and killed livestock. It is difficult to find a ray of light in this grim story of disaster, except this: Over the past weeks, media outlets have been flooded with stories and images of bravery, camaraderie, and community spirit where ethnicity suddenly became irrelevant. It remains to be seen how this feeling of camaraderie and community can be harvested to mobilize the people of Bosnia ahead of the general elections in October. Such a movement would have the potential to force corrupted political elites into the corner by draining them of their political capital.

Detection
Improved terahertz technology to benefit passenger screening, food inspection, MRIs

Researchers are developing new terahertz detectors based on carbon nanotubes that could lead to significant improvements in medical imaging, airport passenger screening, food inspection and other applications.Historically, the terahertz frequency range -- which falls between the more conventional ranges used for electronics on one end and optics on another -- has presented great promise along with vexing challenges for researchers.A major problem is that the photonic energy in the terahertz range is much smaller than for visible light, and currently there are nota lot of materials to absorb that light efficiently and convert it into an electronic signal.The researchers say there is a need to solve this technical problem to take advantage of the many beneficial applications for terahertz radiation.

Homeland Security, Criminal Justice, Law & Public Policy - Master of Science Legal Studies 100% online - CALU Global Online
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Pandemics
Avian flu viruses has all the ingredients necessary for the emergence of 1918 influenza-like virus

The 1918, or "Spanish flu," pandemic was one of recorded history's most devastating outbreaks of disease, resulting in an estimated forty million deaths worldwide. Researchers have shown that circulating avian influenza viruses contain all the genetic ingredients necessary to underpin the emergence of a virus similar to the deadly 1918 influenza virus. The researchers have identified eight genes from influenza viruses isolated from wild ducks that possessed remarkable genetic similarities to the genes that made up the 1918 pandemic flu virus.

Drones
New generation of aerial robots for high-risk missions

The need for robots able to carry out high-risk service tasks, such as the inspection of power plants and the cleaning of skyscrapers, is growing. Robots which actively interact with the environment without being constrained on the ground are well suited to such tasks.

Also noted

U.S. cybersecurity firm accuses China's secret military unit of espionage | Terror trial to be heard in secret despite open justice victory | 26-year-old faces terrorism charges in Germany | Preventive measures key to combating terrorism: U.S. experts | World Cup security more focused on crime, protests than terrorism | San Francisco becomes first U.S. city to offer encrypted Wi-Fi | U.S. agencies report back on safeguarding chemical plants | Indian Point’s tritium problem and the NRC’s regulatory problem | Robot wields mop in Fukushima nuclear plant cleanup | U.S. Energy Department invests $10 million in software for grids | The story of Jason Woodring, the Arkansas power grid vandal | House, Senate agree on chemical weapons destruction funding | MOX facility at Savannah River Site could get funding for construction | Iran scaling down plutonium production plans

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Homeland Security, Criminal Justice, Law & Public Policy - Master of Science Legal Studies 100% online - CALU Global Online
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Progress and Modernity in Arab Societies
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