Panelists: General Raymond Odierno (Ret.) (Senior Adviser, JPMorgan Chase) Michael E. O’Hanlon (Senior Fellow, Foreign Policy, Center for 21 Century Security and Intelligence) Amy Liu (Vice President Director – Metropolitan Policy Program) The Honorable Mitchell J. Landrieu (Mayor- City of New Orleans) His Excellency Juan Carlos Pinzon (Ambassador of Colombia to the United States of America) Fran Townsend (Executive vice president, worldwide government, legal and business affairs)

The report the Brookings Institute set to find a better way at approaching globalization. The report concluded with six findings:

  1. Refining Policing – building block to safety
  2. How to break down stovepipes between agencies and levels of governments
  3. How to establish strategies against organized crime?
  4. How to promote new technologies
  5. How to improve social cohesion
  6. The preparation for black swan events

General Raymond Odierno states that when he first started at JPMorgan, he was briefed on the project. The study he pursued on megacities concluded that most of the world’s population would live in cities, which would change the dynamic of security. To have economic growth, you must have security, as they go hand in hand. He realized that there are many common problems and a lot of uniqueness. Globalization, the movement of goods and information will result in a structure change regarding how the West perceives security. It is important that the new perception intertwines defense both in foreign and domestic services. Because of the speed of the events, there is a need to decentralize the sources of power. Therefore, it is of utmost importance for Mayors to play a bigger role.

He thinks that although cities are different, there are a lot of commonalities. There is a significant amount of problems a city deal with such as transnational or organized crime, terrorism, national disaster, social cohesion or unrest, cyber threats to infrastructure and economy. Odierno argues that there is a need to start thinking about how to deal with these problems at a local level.

Michael E. O’Hanlon sustains that in Detroit he saw a significant increase in safety, taking into consideration that it is a city challenged with crime, by creating an inner city which is safer. The city increased the number of surveillance cameras and patrol officers, especially from the private sector. There are many more security agencies and citizens can buy their surveillance camera, and plug the feed in the police system. The public and private sector are working together, to make the city safer.

Further, O’Hanlon argues that Paris and London had a lot of lessons to teach as they are both safe towns, although they are under a cloud of terrorism. There are differences between Paris and London because London has a simplified structure. London has only six organizations that all work together. Although they suffered many attacks, they have criminal and terrorist networks that are different from the general diaspora. In France, the terrorist and criminal organizations are more linked together, so it is easier to move money, people, etc. After 9/11 the government created the National Counter-terrorism Center, responsible for integrating databases and intelligence forces. Now scholars argue that this is the path France should follow in.

Fran Townsend argues that most of the crime happen in local communities, and therefore the citizens want representation in the Counter Terrorism Center. There is a good relationship between the Federal employees and their partners, which did not exist before 9/11. Classified information was not previously shared. It is hard for the establishment to understand the local needs. It needs to be a two-way sharing of information. If you rely on informational at the national level, one is missing the greatest number of potential collectors. If the employees are not provided with the easy mechanisms, you are not connecting all the necessary dots.

When Fran Townsend left the Federal government, she was against it, because the speaker did not believe it was capable of doing its job. She started a nonprofit organization “the counter-extremism project,” to work the grand system with the federal government and get it to communities, where it could be used efficiently at a cohesive issue. The federal government couldn’t do it on its own. Along with her colleagues and the federal government, money was raised to let the people closest to the problems address the issues. To have the capabilities to fight battles efficiently, local communities must be empowered to bridge the gap.

The speaker believes that technology is a blessing a curse. If terrorist used technology governments can exploit it, but the problem is the speed at which information is going. Regarding information sharing, there is much more that needs to be done. One needs to be able to leverage that technology to everyone. It has to be easy. There is a need to have immediate feedback; there needs to be real-time transparency. There is also the cultural issue. The federal government needs to see itself by enlargement.

The Honorable Mitchell J. Landrieu sustains that to secure the US, one cannot only win through aggressive methods, but that one needs to rebuild the institutions that the damaged state needs most such as sewage systems, schools, and the health care systems. After the war in Iraq, the US government did that because it was believed that it would protect the homeland. The problem is that it is a long-fought debate due to monetary issues. The speaker further argues that in the future 85% of the population will be living in cities. He concludes that he realized that most tragedies happen in the major cities, for example, the Boston Bombing, 9/11 and Orlando, which is why there is a need to secure urban living.

Synthesis by: Patricia Besciu, all opinions are those of speakers – no personal opinions included.

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