RealNews

Ridge looks to tweak alert system

After raising the national terror threat level to code orange three times in the past four months, Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge said Thursday that he is concerned about the ”sustainability and credibility” of the color-coded system. Ridge said he wants to avoid that kind of fluctuation in the alert level in the future and wants a new system where alerts can be targeted for specific industries, states or cities rather than the entire country. The secretary acknowledged, however, that the alert system can be only as good as the intelligence reports that guide it. Those reports have been too vague to allow for geographically targeted alerts. Ridge also said he thought that terrorists might be gaming the system — pumping up the ”chatter” picked up by intelligence officials in order to trick the country into tightening security. That ”can be part of their deceptive art,” he said. A little more than four months after his department was created, Ridge’s expression of concern about the alert system came as part of a broader look at how to enhance the department’s public image. Full Story

OODA Analyst

OODA Analyst

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