Considerations for SOF in Domestic Homeland Security   [open pdf - 315KB]

"The purpose of this monograph is to ascertain what missions are appropriate for Special Operations Forces (SOF) in a domestic setting under the auspices of Defense Support to Civil Authorities (DSCA) and Homeland Defense (HD). Since 9/11 the military has been given a larger role in responding to incidents of terror and natural disasters in support of federal, state and local governments. This support is viewed largely as augmenting the capabilities and capacity of first responders and emergency management coordinators. SOF is likely to be given an expanded role in this environment, but careful evaluation of what missions are suitable is required to mitigate potential negative effects on the Global War on Terror (GWOT) abroad. The potential exists for direct and indirect support to domestic civil agencies during times of emergency, but modifications to the organization's training and doctrine may be necessary to ensure effective interoperability. Additionally, changes to the command and control of SOF within US Northern Command's (USNORTHCOM) AOR are examined. SOF must identify those areas that require self-improvement prior to conducting these domestic missions, and evaluate whether the potential exists to cross train with first responders to improve civilian capabilities as well. SOF maintains the potential to positively affect the domestic security situation provided an honest and careful examination of its likely roles and responsibilities are undertaken."

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Defense Technical Information Center (DTIC): http://www.dtic.mil/dtic/
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