Joint Interagency Task Forces; the Right Model to Combat Transnational Organized Crime?   [open pdf - 384KB]

From the thesis abstract: "Joint Interagency Task Forces (JIATF) represent a contemporary, whole-of-government approach to national issues by aligning authorities and capabilities of disparate agencies under one operational commander with a focused mission, and by promoting interagency cooperation through a unique, inclusive organizational structure. JIATF-South, in particular, has been highly successful at detecting, monitoring, and interdicting transnational threats comprising the illegal drug trade and the narco-terrorists perpetuating the movement of drugs and drug conveyances to U.S. shores during its 26-year history. JIATF-South's success at combating the transnational drug threat offers a compelling model for U.S. government efforts to counter Transnational Organized Crime (TOC), which constitutes a growing threat to international stability and governance and poses an especially daunting national security challenge to the United States in the 21st century. This study serves to analyze the effectiveness of the JIATF-South organizational structure as well as propose that a similar operational-level coordinating mechanism aligned under a Geographic Combatant Command (GCC) is both necessary and optimally suited to combat the myriad of asymmetric threats the U.S. faces from transnational crime, which at present range from drug trafficking and cybercrime to human trafficking and narcoterrorism."

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