Terrorism? What are
real threats against your company?
By Jim Carsten
Director of Security
Special to GwinnettForum.com
(Editor's Note: recently we bumped into former
Gwinnett Sheriff Jim Carsten, and asked him to write about local
terrorism threats. -eeb)
MARCH 11, 2003 -- Safety and security issues for companies since
9/11 and the recent announcements of increased Homeland Security
threat levels plague company executives, as to their response in
keeping their workers safe and premises secure. Questions are raised.
Answers are sought. Mostly, non-response is a result of a simple
equation; "Lack of Awareness = Lack of Preparedness.
Layers of management and support personnel are trying, more aggressively,
to get involved as to the proper responses in protecting their assets
and their infrastructure vulnerability. Since these new terrorism
acts and threats, how has your company approached keeping your property
and workers safe? Consider the recent survey, of 669 corporate officers,
conducted, in part, by Duke University's Fuqua School of Business.
Roughly half of them believe that the risks, for workers, hasn't
changed and the other half are taking significant steps to increase
safety. Not surprisingly, the companies with the big annual revenues
and lots of employees are making the most changes and those smaller
companies are less likely to make changes, in spite of the terrorist
In the Northeast areas (Washington D.C. and New York, where attacks
had a direct impact) some 56.4 percent of companies are enhancing
security and making changes. While in the South and Central regions
only 40 percent of companies are taking new security and safety
Whether you're a small company in Gwinnett County or a major international
corporation, the time is now to create or update your Disaster Preparedness
Plan, Crisis Management Program, Life Safety Plan, Emergency Response
Protocols or whatever name you give it, it is vital to your survival
and planning for:
Loss of Personnel
Loss of Access
Loss of Information
You cannot plan your journey without a roadmap and that "roadmap"
for your company is defining and assessing your present security
by, a largely subjective process, known as a Vulnerability Analysis
(VA). A vulnerability analysis is a systematic approach used to
analyze the effectiveness of the overall (current or proposed) security
system at a particular property. The vulnerability analysis first
determines the objectives of the property's physical protection
Next, it identifies the physical protection elements in place (or
proposed) to prevent or mitigate security concerns. Finally, it
analyzes the system design against the objectives in a systematic,
quantitative manner, in order to determine if the physical protection
system is effective and acceptable for that property. The primary
purpose of the analysis is to assist Property Management, Owners
and Security Personnel in accessing their facility's security posture
before and after a threat or disaster.
The real threat to your company....is it "Terrorism"
or 'Failure to Plan?" If you have started to plan, GREAT. If
not, it is not too late.
are many more costs than fighting cost of war
editor and publisher
MARCH 11, 2003 -- War....costs.
Realizing the cost of war is no reason not to fight a "just"
war, of course. But remember, war costs.
Diplomacy, by its very nature, costs less than war. Eventually,
diplomacy may fail, and in that case, you go to war.
But war costs. Let's look closer at the cost of war.
The smallest cost may be the fighting of the war itself. The soldiers,
and tanks, and airplanes and bullets and bombs and missiles all
are major costs, and that in itself, might be enormous. Most of
us can't think in those total cost terms. Best guess is that the
fighting of a war in Iraq will cost at least $8-10 billion each
month. (Figures are from the Congressional Budget Office.)
Even getting troops to the war zone in Iraq is costly. Estimates
of the troop and equipment movement (to and from) are about $25
billion. We're talking big dollars here.
Let's not get into the cost of an extended war. That will blow
your mind. Just suppose the war were a short one. What would be
the next cost? The occupation cost of Americans remaining in Iraq
for an indefinite period of time to guard the peace will be enormous.
The same Congressional Budget Office figures this could be from
$1-4 billion a month, or from $12-48 billion a year.
How many years? You figure. World War II ended in 1945, and as
late as this year, we still have American troops in Germany and
Korea and Japan. The occupation costs can be staggering, and continuing,
for so very long.
Then there's another cost: the United States, after World War I
and World War II, helped pay the cost of re-building of the nations
This might seem like the shoe should be on the other foot. After
all, if it was a "just" war that we did not want to fight,
but had to, why should we re-build the nation that started it?
Yet for some reason, the Americans have in the past footed this
bill. Some call this "humanitarian" aid to the defeated
nation. The cost? Realize that whatever total cost you come up with.....it,
too, will be in the billions! Billions! It staggers the mind.
There's another wrinkle: the Bush Administration now pressing a
tax cut on Americans, which is estimated to reduce government revenues
by at least $160 billion a year. Coupled with possibly heavy spending
on the apparently-no-way-to-halt war, the timing seems inappropriate.
The costs are progressivly higher, and will add to the deficit,
currently projected around $300 billion.
Add in: the worsening economy. That could mean even lower tax revenues
for the government, compounding the problems. It makes the Bush
proposals for a tax cut even more unreasonable.
Do you see the direction?
Getting troops to the war zone...fighting the war...occupying a
nation...rebuilding a nation....all enormously costly ventures.
Coupled with a stalled economy...a proposed tax cut...and lower
revenues...and billions soon become trillions. Finding it harder
to contemplate billions, another level in trillions boggles the
As other nations stand up to avert war, coupled with the exceeding
high costs of war, and its multiplying consequences, it causes a
person to question even more loudly the movement to war.
For diplomacy to work, war must be a possibility. But it should
be a very last possibility, or the reality become more onerous.
War costs. War costs far more than anyone figures at first blush.
Such modern heavy costs could wreck not only this nation, but the
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3/11: Feels conclusion
on Gateway was made in error
Editor, the Forum:
Your conclusion in "Gateway test worked well" is disputed
by facts in your own article. The first Gateway was administered
in grades 4 and 7 in 2000 (not 1999). The earliest effect would
be seen in 8th graders in the 2000-01year and 9th graders in the
Your trends attesting to the success of GCPS students (SAT and
HSG scores etc.) relate to students promoted using classroom grades.
"Gateway" students aren't old enough to have affected
Your facts demonstrate the success of the previous promotion
policy, and indicate the Gateway was never needed. Your opinion
demonstrates you ignored the facts.
-- Larry Major, Dacula
(EDITOR'S NOTE: Dear Mr. Major: My information
is different from yours. The first Gateway tests were given in
1998 to all 4th, 5th, 7th, 8th and 10th graders. Students were
not required to pass these for promotion and graduation until
2000, because 1998 and 1999 were pilot years. Scores were reported
to parents and teachers even in the pilot years. So, beginning
in 1996 all students knew that they would be held accountable
for learning the new curriculum and that the Gateways were going
to be used to measure that. For example, students who took the
SAT in 2001-2002 (Gwinnett's highest score ever) started learning
the AKS in 7th grade. They took the pilot 8th grade writing Gateway.
They were required to pass the 10th grade Gateway in 2000 and
they took the SAT as seniors.---eeb)
3/11: Not hate,
but heritage on the flag question
Editor, the Forum:
In response to Connie Catalano's comments on the raging flag
issue: I note that she is not a native Georgian.
It's not about hate, it's about heritage.
You will remember that before the November elections, I told
you that the people in South Georgia were as mad as a nest of
hornets about the "new" flag was rammed down the voters
throats, and was a bigger issue than Barnes thought it was. Looks
like I was right. He's not the governor anymore.
All we wanted was a chance to vote on a flag change. I personally
like the pre-1956 better than the "Stars and bars" flag,
and would like to see the state flag so adopted.
-- David Earl Tyre, Jesup
3/11: Prefers for
athletes merely to graduate
Editor, the Forum:
I disagree with Wayne Sikes about paying the so-called "student
athletes". Seems to me the answer is in making them "students".
If my recollection is correct, the famous Georgia Tech football
coach Bobby Dodd required that all his players graduate college,
and all did.
I also expect that they didn't have a for-credit course in "football
field striping". I hear that the Harricks teach a course
of that nature but relating to basketball.
-- Elmore Stuart, Norcross
3/11: Suwanee, Duluth
plan farmers' markets for April
The cities of Suwanee and Duluth have earned accolades for their
efforts to revitalize their downtowns and bring a more urban--albeit
traditional--feel to their city centers. Now, the two Gwinnett
County cities are working together to add a rural appeal to their
Suwanee and Duluth will host a farmers' market Saturdays from
May through mid-September. Each city will host the farmers' market
on alternating Saturdays. The schedule has not yet been finalized.
Farmers, growers, gardeners, and makers of homemade goods who
are interested in participating, should contact Vicki Keyser at
the City of Suwanee, 770/945-8996 or firstname.lastname@example.org,
or Paige Hatley at the City of Duluth, 678/475-3512 or email@example.com.
The Suwanee market will be at City Hall, 373 Buford Highway,
and the Duluth market will be located downtown on Main Street.
OF THE DAY
On which types of
relationships are the hardest
"The easiest kind of relationship for me is with ten thousand
people. The hardest is with one."
-- Singer Joan Baez.
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