Defense Support to Civil Authorities   [open pdf - 940KB]

From the thesis abstract: "Defense Support to Civil Authorities (DSCA) in the post 9-11 era has received intense scrutiny with regard to the military's ability to effectively respond to natural or man-made disasters. The two party political nuances at the local, state, and federal levels, the media's amplification of any perceived failures, and statutory constraints, have forced the Department of Defense (DoD) to reexamine how it supports civil authorities when it is not the lead federal agency. The federal government's slow and inadequate response to the seminal devastation created by Hurricane Katrina exposed weaknesses in the National Response Plan and DoD's contribution to that plan despite prior successes using the same plan. The response weaknesses are complex as they cut through three levels of government, transcend multiple federal and state agencies, and specifically for the military, cross between Title 10, Title 32, and state active duty forces, where the parent authorities of those forces are reluctant to share control for political, fiscal, and mission realities. DoD should view DSCA as a core mission and, irrespective of the current military operational tempo, they must seasonally source forces, for planning purposes, to satisfy the most likely DSCA response. A sourced capability that is initially designed against pre-scripted capabilities to meet predicted response requirements will allow tasked units to prepare for a potential response."

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