November 1, 2007

Is Port Security Funding Making Us Safer?

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Audits of Conventional Wisdom


Veronique de Rugy writes on the effectiveness of increased port security spending in this paper written for Audits of the Conventional Wisdom, a publication of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Center for International Studies. 

Veronique writes, "The most terrifying security threat to security experts and the public alike is nuclear proliferation. Once the figment of Hollywood imagination, the ultimate nightmare scenario that is discussed by some as inevitable is the detonation of a nuclear device on American soil. The majority of experts believe that the most likely way weapons of mass destruction (WMD) would enter the United States is by sea, hence a focus on port security. . . .

"In FY 2007, President Bush requested $2.3 billion for port security out of a $57 billion government-wide budget for homeland security.5 However, the important question is not how much money is spent but rather whether the money is allocated toward the most costeffective programs. In other words, is America getting the maximum level of protection in exchange for our tax dollars?"

Click here for the entire publication.