The various counter terrorism units in the country play an integral role in ensuring that the fight against terrorism is won. They are focussed on ensuring that not only the USA but the world in general is peaceful. A number of agencies are involved in the fight against terrorism in the USA but the focus of the paper will be centered on the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
The FBI serves as an intelligence and law enforcement agency and has its headquarters in Washington D.C. The agency was started in 1908 and has grown immensely to cover a wider range of responsibilities. It currently has over 35,104 employees that have a wide range of skills and knowledge that are essential in protecting the citizens of the USA from terrorism attack (Gulati, Raffaelli, and Rivkin, 2016).
Counter terrorism: Structure of FBI
The FBI has a centralized organizational structure that ensures a seamless flow of information. The head of the agency is the director who works in close conjunction with the office of the General Counsel, chief of staff, inspection division. The next in line is the deputy director who works in close conjunction with the office of professional responsibility, office of equal employment, office of the public and congressional affairs.
The other units that are controlled directly by the director and deputy director are criminal justice information service division, tracking division, administrative services division, training division, information resource division, information resources division, national security division, criminal investigative division, laboratory division, finance division, investigative services division, and counter- terrorism division ( United States Federal Bureau of Investigations(FBI) Academy Handbook, 2014, p.89).
From an international perspective, the FBI has over 64 legats and smaller sub offices in various cities around the world. The presence of the agency is present in over 200 countries and they have been set up through a mutual understanding from the governments and the agency. Most of the offices are located within the U.S embassy or the consulate. Their main aim is to ensure that they share intelligence information that will benefit the country they are operating and the USA (International operations, 2017).
The agencies that they work with are Interpol, foreign police, CIA and other international organizations that safe guard the people. The interactions between the country they are hosted and the USA is based on the treaties, statues, executive orders and Attorney general guidelines that are agreed upon by all the agencies.
The Legat program goes further ahead to offer international intelligence training to the security agencies in the different countries that they operate. The training does provide an opportunity to strengthen the relationship between the agency, USA and the countries they operate in. Moreover, it does provide an opportunity to consolidate the security of the entire world with respect to combating terrorism activities (International operations, 2017).
After the 9/11 attacks in the USA, the agency’s responsibility, intelligence work increased immensely to ensure efficiency in the operations to combat terrorism (McClintock, 2016). The counter terrorism division within the FBI is divided into four branches which are operations Branch 1, operations Branch II, analytical and operations support branch.
The Operations Branch I is further divided into two sections which are the international Terrorism Section I that does concentrate on al Qaeda activities on a regional and international basis. The second section concentrates on terrorism affiliated groups in Iraq/Syria/Libya, Palestinian rejectionist groups, Iran and Hezbollah, and other terrorist groups that are present in different parts of the globe (Anderson, 2010, p. 19).
The second branch, operations branch II, concentrates on weapons of mass destruction, terrorist financing operations, domestic terrorism and communications exploitation sections. The FBI does provide intelligence information on nuclear, radiological, biological, chemical or other weapons that are used by terrorist groups to clear a large number of people or cause extreme damage to the infrastructure of any nation. The second section, terrorist financing operations section, focuses on the investigating the funding of the terrorism groups and freezing their assets to decapitate their operations (Gulati et al., 2016).
The section does play a vital role in carrying out in depth investigation, prosecution, disruption and continuous demolishment of the terrorist activities that are tied down to fund-raising activities. The section has been further divided into four units to enhance efficiency, they are financial intelligence analysis, global extremist financial investigations, radical fundamentalist financial investigative, and domestic WMD, and global financial investigations unit (Gulati et al., 2016).
The third branch is the counter terrorism branch that deals with analysis and preparation of the intelligence reports. The branch does serve as the clearing house for all the intelligence gathering and processing. The branch has five divisions which are activities, ideology, linkages, trade craft and terrorist group composition. The branch does identify intelligence assets, blind spots and gaps in the intelligence system, evaluating the threat levels within the country, and the source of funding for all the terror groups.
The most dangerous groups that the branch monitors are the Al Qaeda, Hezbollah and Hamas. Last but not least it does share the intelligence they have gathered with other security agencies in the country to consolidated their work efforts (FBI Counter terrorism Analysis Branch Jobs and Salary, 2017).
The last branch, operations support branch, does focus on handling a number of responsibilities that are essential in ensuring that the tactical personnel are able to operate efficiently in the various missions. They develop budgets, organize training programs for the units, formulate CTD strategies, and consolidate partnerships with external private entities in the intelligence security organizations (FBI Counterterrorism Operational Support Branch Jobs and Salary, 2017).
The branch has two divisions which are the national threat center and the counter terrorism operational response section. The division is the backbone of the FBI and does share intelligence information with the Joint Terrorism Task Force and the Department of Homeland Security to counter terrorism. Moreover, the unit also shares information with the general public when it comes to counter terrorism programs.
Additionally, the branch oversees the FBI personnel who have been seconded to other security agency and finally it does work in close conjunction with the Department of Defense when it comes to coordinating operations (FBI Counterterrorism Operational Support Branch Jobs and Salary, 2017).
On the logistic perspective focuses on ensuring that the agency can be able to work effectively in their operations. The employees in the logistic centre work in construction, space management employee health and safety, telecommunications management, facilities operations, mail/freight management, and security electronics. The logistics of the team does go beyond consolidating the operations within the Washington D.C offices and the legate in different parts of the world (Our very own global logistics Service, 2017).
Logistic aspect also does come into action when the FBI is engaged in field activities. The team that handles their logistics is referred to as the Rapid Deployment Logistic Unit (RDLU), the unit is the first respondents when the agency is called to handle an attack and it does constitute counter terrorism experts, communicators, medical staff, military liaisons, lab personnel among others. They also have the Crisis Advance Team (CAT) that does determine the number of specialist that are required to combat counter terrorism.
When the specialist responds to any attack the field specialists segregate areas to set up the command post, and other machines that will be essential in linking the operation to the FBI offices in the USA. The RDLU also does work in setting up temporary operation centers that provide the team with an opportunity of hosting major diplomatic meetings, international sports and other special events (Our very own global logistics Service, 2017).
On the financing aspects the agency does receive funds for operations mainly from the federal government. The president does provide the agency with the finances required to run the operations each financial year based on the budget prepared by the operational support branch of the FBI. The machinery and weapons used by the tactical team vary based on the mission that the agents are carrying out. As discussed, the unit has different agents handling varying issues with respect to countering terrorism (Operational Technology, 2017).
The one aspect that is clear is that the agency uses the latest technology in their role to combat terrorism in the USA and the world at large. The FBI has launched the operational technology division located in Virginia that does incorporate technology in the intelligence, law enforcement and national security aspect of the nation. Some of the specific areas that they focus on are advanced electronic surveillance and search, digital forensics, radio program, specialized support and coordination, tactical operations, technical personnel and defensive programs among others (Operational Technology, 2017).
In conclusion, counter terrorism is an issue that does affect everyone in the different parts of the world. The FBI is one of the agencies that our focus group concentrated on evaluating their organizational structure, size, the different responsibilities of the branches, the finances and the type of machinery that is used. The FBI is not the only agency that tackles terrorism issues, but it does play an effective role by collaborating with the internal and external agency to combat terrorism.
Anderson, J. W. (2010). Disrupting Threat Finances: Utilization of Financial information to Disrupt terrorism. Diane Publishing.
FBI Counterterrorism Analysis Branch Jobs and Salary. (2017). Fbiagentedu.org. Retrieved 11 August 2017, from http://www.fbiagentedu.org/careers/countert…….analysis/
FBI Counterterrorism Operational Support Branch Jobs and Salary. (2017). Fbiagentedu.org. Retrieved 11 August 2017, from http://www.fbiagentedu.org/careers/countert…….operational-support/
Gulati, R., Raffaelli, R., & Rivkin, J.W. (2016). Does “what We Do” Make Us” who We Are”? Organizational Design and Identity Change at the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Harvard Business School.
International Operations. (2017). Federal Bureau of Investigation. Retrieved 11 August 2017, from https://www.fbi.gov/about/leadership-and-structure/international-operations
McClintock, M. (2016). Counter-Terrorism and Human Rights since 9/11. The Ashgate Research Companion to Political Violence, 411.
Operational Technology. (2017). Federal Bureau of Investigation. Retrieved 11 August 2017, from https://www.fbi.gov/services/operational-technology
Our very own global logistics Service. (2017). Federal Bureau of Investigation. Retrieved 11 August 2017, from https://archives.fbi.gov/archves/news/stories/2017/april/rdlu040805
United States Federal Bureau of Investigations(FBI) Academy Handbook. (2014). International Business Publication, USA.
Want help to write your Essay or Assignments? Click here.