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Should base level funding for critical infrastructure protection against foreign terrorists organizations include domestic (internal) threats - Research Paper Example

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According to the US federal government, critical infrastructure (CI) includes assets and systems, virtual or physical that when destroyed could lead to a debilitating effect on national public health, security, national economic security, safety or any combination of the above…
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Should base level funding for critical infrastructure protection against foreign terrorists organizations include domestic (internal) threats
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Critical Infrastructure Protection Funding Introduction According to the US federal government, critical infrastructure (CI) includes assets and systems, virtual or physical that when destroyed could lead to a debilitating effect on national public health, security, national economic security, safety or any combination of the above (Arreguín, 2002). Essential assets such as electricity systems, telecommunication systems, water supplies, transportation systems, financial institutions and other essential service facilities are only a few of the nation’s critical infrastructure.
Since terrorists have continuously increased their capacities in terms of sophistication and potential damage, there is need to take necessary steps to guard key infrastructures both private- and publicly owned against these developments. In order to effectively tackle cases of terroristic attacks against CI, base level funding for protection against foreign terrorist organizations should include domestic or internal threats.

Potential Targets
Indeed in today’s modern world, without critical infrastructure a society cannot function optimally. In fact, it is only in times of peace and relative security that critical infrastructures are characteristically, for granted taken. It must however be appreciated that when one critical infrastructure is annihilated, the entire nation somehow feels the effects of the loss (ITAC, 2006). In some cases, the loss may be as great in magnitude as to affect one or more countries significantly.
Owing to their significance, critical infrastructures are always naturally become vulnerable targets for terrorists – foreign or those that exist within the nation’s borders (ITAC, 2006). It is in appreciation of this fact that the government in conjunction with its citizens and other stakeholders must always ensure that these infrastructures remain secure and function properly. In the US, currently, there is no clear policy as to how base level funding should be used. This therefore means that in cases of need, funding meant for foreign terrorist protection could be used to solve issues related to domestic threats.
Evolving Nature of Crimes
While terrorist gangs have often resorted to using bombs and other violent methods, it must be appreciated that they are likely to change tactics soon or later. Instead of engaging in physical combat, terrorists may opt to target information systems and other cyber assets in an unprecedented way. This could of course have a devastating effect since most of the country’s critical infrastructure is run or controlled by computers which in most cases are networked (ITAC, 2006). Much as organizations may put efforts to prevent attacks from terrorists within the country, such efforts may be compromised if high-tech means of executing crimes are applied. Further, there is a chance of domestic terrorists working in conjunction with those outside the country to effect crimes at a higher level.
In view of the fact that base level funding is aimed at raising the fundamental level of an infrastructure’s security, the government should take an active role in ensuring that all major assets found within the nation’s borders are safe to at least a minimum level (Arreguín, 2002). Regardless of whether or not a critical infrastructure of a country is successfully attacked by a foreign terrorist group, the country would be quite humiliated to fall victim of terrorism– more so if the attackers are based within the country’s borders. This generally would reflect laxity in the provision of security against the taxes that are paid by citizens.
Conclusion
While the country may have taken several measures aimed at protecting critical infrastructures, quite a lot still needs to be done. The government should extend adequate base level funding to cater not only for possible foreign terrorist attacks but also to tackle threats that exist within the country at the domestic level. In other words, if the country has to be fully protected, then it needs to provide adequate funding to protect its key infrastructures.
References
Arreguín-Toft I. ‘Tunnel at the end of the light: A critique of U.S. counter-terrorist grand strategy’. Cambridge Review of International Affairs. 2002. Vol. 15, No. 3. pp. 550–563.
ITAC Trends in terrorism: actual and potential links between terrorism and criminality ITAC series(2006) Volume 2006-5 Read More
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