Army Chemical Review

SUMMER 2013

Army Chemical Review presents professional information about Chemical Corps functions related to chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, smoke, flame, and civil support operations.

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By Major Bryon G. Galbraith T he Defense Threat Reduction Agency provides chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and highyield explosives (CBRNE) expertise at the strategic (global and national) level, the operational (regional and geographic combatant command) level, and the tactical (battlefeld) level. Its unique organization, capabilities, mission, and ability to build partnerships make the Defense Threat Reduction Agency the Department of Defense center of excellence for combating weapons of mass destruction threats. According to the National Strategy to Combat Weapons of Mass Destruction, "Defending the American homeland is the most basic responsibility of our government. As part of our defense, the United States must be fully prepared to respond to the consequences of [weapons of mass destruction] use on our soil, whether by hostile states or by terrorists. We must also be prepared to respond to the effects of [weapons of mass destruction] use against our forces deployed abroad and to assist friends and allies."1 The Department of Defense must coordinate interagency efforts in order to synchronize resources to deter and prevent the use of weapons of mass destruction. The Defense Threat Reduction Agency is uniquely positioned to support and develop partnership capacities using a nested and synchronized approach. The agency builds partnerships with combatant commanders across the full spectrum of operations in the contemporary operating environment by providing expertise and services during offensive, defensive, stability, and civil support operations. Another important role of the Defense Threat Reduction Agency is the building of partnership capacities outside the Department of Defense. The Defense Threat Reduction Agency works with other government agencies (U.S. Department of State, U.S. Department of Energy, U.S. Agency for International Development), nongovernmental organizations, and foreign-nation ministries in planning and executing weapons of mass destruction missions to ensure global synchronization in combating weapons of mass destruction. The Defense Threat Reduction Agency organization, capabilities, and mission-essential tasks are tangibly linked to the National Strategy to Combat Weapons of Mass Destruction and clearly nest with the National Security Strategy,2 with the ultimate goal of safeguarding the American people and our allies. The importance of building partnership capacities has been summarized in the following statement: "No ministry or agency has at its disposal all the capabilities and expertise necessary to deal with complex policy challenges in a comprehensive manner. Today, these challenges are often transborder—e.g., disease, crime, terrorism, fnancial, and humanitarian—crises. They require domestic and international cooperation and 10 the engagement of multiple governments and international organizations."3 No single Department of Defense organization or agency has the ability or autonomy needed to unilaterally conduct combating weapons of mass destruction operations. Many organizations within and outside the U.S. government provide expertise and assistance. The Defense Threat Reduction Agency conducts its mission in partnership with agencies across the Department of Defense, U.S. government, universities, private and civilian sectors, and foreign nations. The Defense Threat Reduction Agency is actively engaged in activities related to the three main pillars of the National Strategy to Combat Weapons of Mass Destruction: nonproliferation, counterproliferation, and consequence management.4 According to the National Military Strategy to Combat Weapons of Mass Destruction— y Nonproliferation can be described as the ability to combat weapons of mass destruction by preventing proliferation through intelligence, policy, treaties, and agreements—with the ultimate goal of preventing states and terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction. y Counterproliferation is the ability to combat weapons of mass destruction use through kinetic and sustained operations to decisively defeat weapons of mass destructionarmed adversaries. y Consequence management refers to the ability to respond to weapons of mass destruction effects against forces deployed abroad and to assist friends and allies.5 The Defense Threat Reduction Agency performs several types of nonproliferation activities, primarily through the implementation of the Nunn-Lugar Cooperative Threat Reduction Program. Cooperative Threat Reduction Program authorities are derived from a 1992 law sponsored by Senators Sam Nunn and Richard Lugar. The purpose of the program is to "[reduce] the threat posed by terrorist organizations or proliferant states seeking to acquire weapons of mass destruction expertise, material, and equipment."6 The Cooperative Threat Reduction Program also provides funding and expertise for decommissioning nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons stockpiles and for assisting with security improvements for nuclear weapons storage and transportation. In conjunction with other U.S. government agencies, such as the Department of State and the Department of Energy, and foreign partners, the Defense Threat Reduction Agency provides the means to implement the Cooperative Threat Reduction Program and to help eliminate weapons of mass destruction threats. Army Chemical Review

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