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Assignment of Biosecurity Biology Issues
1. Non-proliferation 25 points.
Part A. What are the most important motivations that have encouraged states to develop biological weapons since their inception? How have States abandoned biological weapons since the BWC? What are the important factors? Explain why in 2001 the BWC verification methodology crashed. Explain why the US until today, after many Presidents and their administrations have come and gone, resisted the protocol? Use present and historical examples to support your thesis.
Part B. In recent years, no new countries have been added to the public lists of suspected countries or knowledge of bacterial weapons programmes. Since you all have indicated that the BWC has no teeth, what do you attribute to the restraint in the spread of biological arms between states? Wait for it to continue? Be sure to explain in such decisions the potential roles of strategy, science, arms control and standards.
2. Policy and Intelligence 25 items
Part A. What are the problems facing intelligence agencies such as inspection plans in the collection and analysis of information on state and terrorist weapons programs? To support your analysis, provide historical and present instances. Propose two ideas for improving intelligence of the United States on biological warfare and bioterrorism programmes.
Part B. What are the three most important lessons acquired from the employment of biological agents by the Rajneesh cultic in 1984 in the small town of Oregon in relation to science, medicine, public health, enforcement and home security? In what way do you think these lessons are reflected in present biodefense strategies, programs and policies?
3. Terrorism 35 items
Part A. In 2008 the Committee on the Prevention of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism wrote: “The United States should be much less concerned about the biologists, given that there is a high level of know-how to be used as an arma to cause mass casualties, and much more concerned that biologists will become terrorists.” Explain with passion why you agree with this evaluation or disagree with it.
Part B. Compare the possibility for a large-scale terrorist attack on the Metro Transit System in Washington DC, utilizing I anthrax, (ii) sarin and (iii) conventional suicide. What are the advantages and disadvantages of choosing one agent from the standpoint of a terrorist group? Talk to each agent, how the attack scenario works and how the first responders try to counter the attack.
Part C. What would a non-state actor need to I get and (ii) employ the weapons outlined above in Part B successfully? Does chemical and biological agent differ greatly that can affect the difficulty of successful acquisition and use? Be sure that obstacles are analyzed, why a certain agent may be chosen and why a certain strategy can be used to disperse during each phase of the acquisition process.
4. Future – 15 items
In the current pandemic, although not political, the media pointed out that the Trump Administration removed the Health and Security Office of the White House. Some people have alleged that this disposal resulted in the United States’ unpreparedness. But this is true?
FACTS: the staff of the National Security Council should assist the President in coordinating government response to international crises and national security issues, recognizing new challenges and ensuring the cooperation of Cabinet agencies and other ministries.
In January 2009, after Barack Obama became President, he dismissed the White House Health and Security Office that dealt with international health issues. After several concerns with the 2014 Ebola crisis, however, President Obama set up a Global Health Security and Biodefense Directorate at the NSC in 2016. This Directorate was owned by a person who reported no longer to the President but to the National Security Adviser.
This structure lasted in the early part of the Trump administration, as Rear Adm. Timothy Ziemer was in charge of the office. Following John Bolton’s arrival as National Security Advisor, he decided that the organizational chart was a muddle and led to too many conflicts. He also considered the personnel were excessively wide, with 430 persons swelling, including staff in the pipeline.
Bolton overhauled the directorate and removed several deputy national security advisers for only one. And the Global Health Directorate has been converted into a new one that focuses on counterproliferation and biodefense. Bolton felt that there was a clear overlap between arms control and non-proliferation, mass destruction weapons, terrorism, and the global health and biodefense. Morrison, who commanded the united office from July 2018 onwards, was appointed the President’s Deputy Assistant and was hence more prominent and accessible to the prior Obama directorate.
The conflicting stories between the Obama administration and Trump cannot be seen as either wholly inaccurate. The position, as established by Obama, had been divided into another entity inside the Trump administration. One might therefore technically say that the office was removed. The employee slots did not disappear, though, and the critical team mission remained a priority. You can therefore also claim that nothing has changed. The former entity is still filled in posts within the NSC and its financing has actually been expanded by Trump. Morrison answered the President directly and could bring items to his attention swiftly
Question: The real change between the administration of Obama and Trump has been philosophical. Under the Obama approach, diseases and pandemics were dealt with via international diplomacy, transparency and international cooperation as a global health issue. It was assumed that outbreaks could be prevented by increasing health care in third country countries. Under the Trump strategy, the biological health emergency epidemiology was thought to be basically the same as a bioterrorist strike. As a result, three directorates fused into a single directorate throughout 2018 to enable a fluid connection between individuals who prepare for biological hazards whether they are manufactured by humans or occur naturally.
You are now the President’s advisor, based on what you learned in the BSBD programme, which method agree with you (or maybe something different). Argue with all your enthusiasm why this should be US policy, based on your concept. How are you gonna implement your plan, who are you using as advisors (expertise and not names), and how do you retain and prioritize the National Strategic Stockpile?
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