Center for American Progress

: Open Target: Where America is Vulnerable to Attack
Past Event

Open Target: Where America is Vulnerable to Attack

12:00 AM - 11:59 PM EDT

Open Target: Where America is Vulnerable to Attack

Clark Kent Ervin, author of Open Target: Where America is Vulnerable to Attack; former Inspector General, Department of Homeland Security, and Director, Homeland Security Initiative, Aspen Institute

David Heyman, Director and Senior Fellow, International Studies’ Homeland Security Program, Center for Strategic and International Studies

Moderated by:
Philip J. (P.J.) Crowley, Senior Fellow and Director, National Defense and Homeland Security, Center for American Progress

Almost five years after 9/11 the United States is only “marginally safer,” says Clark Kent Ervin. The formation of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which he describes as “less than the sum of its parts,” has little to do with the fact that we have not been attacked since then. Known problems federal aviation screeners who perform no better than the private sector employees they replaced; air cargo and shipping containers that are not scanned; repeated unfunded federal mandates; the lack of security at many chemical facilities; the absence of financial controls that is so evident in the mismanaged Katrina relief effort are still not being adequately addressed. This is a major concern as the United States continues to face the threats of terrorism and prepares for hurricane season. As the former inspector general of both DHS and the Department of State, Mr. Ervin has a unique perspective in describing what he terms the “vulnerability gap.” Mr. Ervin offers detailed recommendations of what the Bush administration and DHS must do to improve homeland security now. Following his synopsis of Open Target, Mr. Ervin will join an expert panel in a broader discussion of the current debate regarding homeland security programs, resources and structure.

Copies of the Open Target will be available at the event courtesy of Reiters bookstore.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

from left: PJ Crowley, Clark Kent Ervin, David Heyman



Note: All video provided in  QuickTime (MPEG-4)  format.


Clark Kent Ervin is the former Inspector General of the US Department of Homeland Security and the Aspen Institute Paul H. Nitze Fellow and Director of the newly established Aspen Institute Homeland Security Initiative. Ervin was the first Inspector General of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). He became Acting Inspector General on January 24, 2003, the departments first day, and the Inspector General by virtue of a recess appointment by President Bush in December 2003. His appointment expired in December 2004. Prior to his service at DHS, Ervin was the Inspector General of the US Department of State and the Broadcasting Board of Governors from August 2001 until January 2003. His service in the Bush administration was preceded by service in the administration of President George H.W. Bush. From 1989 until 1991, he served as an Associate Director of Policy in the White House Office of National Service.

David Heyman is the Director and Senior Fellow of the Center for Strategic and International Studies’ Homeland Security Program, leading the CSIS’s homeland security efforts on strategy, policy, research, and education. During his time at CSIS, he has directed the Homeland Security Task Force, Biological Threat Reduction Consortium, and the Roundtable on Science and Security. Prior to joining CSIS, he served as a senior adviser to the U.S. secretary of energy from 1998 to 2001 and the head of the Department of Energy’s Technology Transfer Task Force. From 1995 to 1998, he worked at the White House in the Office of Science and Technology Policy, National Security and International Affairs Division, coordinating U.S. policies, programs, and budgets related to international cooperation in science and technology. He has worked in Europe, Russia, and the Middle East. Heyman’s publications include DHS 2.0: Rethinking the Department of Homeland Security (2004), Lessons from the Anthrax Attacks (2002), as well as contributions to Science and Security in the 21st Century (2002). His most recent publication, Model Operational Guidelines for Disease Exposure Control (2005), a treatise on how to protect public health in a pandemic when no medical countermeasures are available, has been utilized by cities and states across the country. Heyman has testified before Congress, is a regular guest on CNN, BBC, and FOX News, and is a frequent on-air contributor to NPR’s “All Things Considered” and WTOP News.

Philip J. (P.J.) Crowley is a Senior Fellow and Director of National Defense and Homeland Security at the Center for American Progress. During the Clinton administration, Crowley was Special Assistant to the President of the United States for National Security Affairs, serving as Senior Director of Public Affairs for the National Security Council. Prior to that, he was Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs. In all, Crowley was a spokesman for the United States government and United States military for 28 years, 11 of those years at the Pentagon and three at the White House. He served for 26 years in the United States Air Force, retiring at the rank of colonel in September 1999. He is a veteran of Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. During the Kosovo conflict, he was temporarily assigned to work with then NATO Secretary General Javier Solana. Prior to joining American Progress, he served as a national spokesman for the property/casualty insurance industry, focusing on strategic industry issues that included the impact of terrorism on commercial insurance in the aftermath of the World Trade Center tragedy and the effect of asbestos litigation on the broader economy. A native of Massachusetts, P.J. is a graduate of the College of the Holy Cross.