Thursday, July 25, 2013

Fire Service Intelligence Integration and The Police Industrial Complex

Joshua M. Dennis's Master's thesis, Standing on the Shoulders of Giants, was published in 2012 by the Naval Postgraduate School (U.S.) Center for Homeland Defense and Security.  Dennis's thesis bears the portentous sub-title "Where Do We Go from Here to Bring the Fire Service into the Domestic Intelligence Community?"  In his abstract, Dennis writes:

"The United States Fire Service has not only a role but a need to be included in the domestic intelligence community. The fire service in gaining access to information and adding untapped sources of information/intelligence can add value to the efforts of the domestic intelligence community and in return provide value added to fire departments’ day-to-day operations. Absent is a strong national guidance for fire service intelligence integration, smart practice models, and local solutions have filled the vacuum. This thesis will look at the future of fire service intelligence sharing and how to pick up where previous efforts left off. Specifically, a model for a national fire intelligence framework is presented. This model considers current local level intelligence solutions within the fire service, and a holistic approach that can meet the needs of unique individual departments. The secondary intent for this thesis is also to stimulate discussion, advance the evolution of fire service intelligence, suggest some operational models, and provide a point upon which others can build upon."

To read Dennis's entire thesis, click HERE (or HERE).

When read in conjunction with Radley Balko's 6-19-13 Huffington Post article entitled "Welcome to the Police Industrial Complex," an ominous picture begins to form regarding the little known connections between the intelligence community and local police and fire departments.  What follows is the first paragraph of Balko's article:

"Want to make money on the drug war? Start a company that builds military equipment, then sell that gear to local police departments. Thanks to the generation-long trend toward more militarized police forces, there's now massive and growing market for private companies to outfit your neighborhood cops with gear that's more appropriate for a battlefield."
In light of Balko's article warning about the increasingly militarized mindset of local police departments, Dennis's phrase "the future of fire service intelligence sharing" begins to take on a rather dystopian tone indeed.
To read Balko's entire article, click HERE.

No comments:

Post a Comment