Announcing the important new book every American needs to readabout the hot-button issue every American needs to understand: national and personal security
Why the Government is Failing to Protect Usand What We Must Do to Protect Ourselves
President and CEO of Kroll Inc., one of America’s foremost security firms wth Alex Prud’homme
“You might not like what Mike Cherkasky has to say about terrorism and how to defeat it because he is so critical of so much of our current security efforts. But his is a voice and an expertise that must be included in our national dialogue. I have worked with Mike and support many of his informed and workable perspectives and potential solutions.”
William J. Bratton, Los Angeles Police Chief
“Mike Cherkasky is a serious thinker whose views on security issues are solicited by those in the public and private sectors. Whether or not you agree with his recommendations, it is important that the country spend more time doing what Mike has been doing, which is thinking about our national security challenges in a post 9/11 world.”
Eliot Spitzer, New York State Attorney General
“Michael Cherkasky, president of the world-famous security agency Kroll, has written a superb book in which he lays out what is needed here on the home front to respond to the threats of terrorist organizations bent on our destruction.”
Edward I. Koch
September 11, 2001 changed America foreverand spurred the creation of the new Department of Homeland Security to oversee the protection of our nation from future terrorist attacks. But are the measures that are now in place actually safe and effective? Or have politics and complacency rendered them useless, leaving our country more vulnerable than ever?
In FOREWARNED: Why the Government is Failing to Protect Usand What We Must Do to Protect Ourselves Hardcover; $24.95; February 18, 2003) Michael Cherkasky, one of America’s foremost security experts and a specialist who has worked closely with U.S. Intelligence agencies, takes aim at the dangerously inadequate state of America’s readiness to defend itself, and presents a provocative yet practical blueprint for remaking America’s homeland security program into a system that is truly secure.
As a security expert, Michael Cherkasky says we are “hopelessly unprepared to defend ourselves and that we continue to misunderstand and underestimate the risks we face. The fact remains that we will be attacked again, and that our current national security policy is ineffective, and that we need a national debate over what we do next.” In FOREWARNED, Cherkasky looks at the current efforts at providing security by our government and finds we are no safer today than we were on September 10th 2001. He explains the security crisis America faces and presents practical steps that the United States can take, what he calls “the Proteus Plan”, to help security agencies foresee and forestall future terrorist attacks, including:
Fighting terrorism should be shifted from the “rigid and hierarchical” FBI to a new Domestic Intelligence Bureau (DIB) with expanded powers.
Well-meaning but ineffectual, the “Homeland Security Department” should be overhauledits color-coded “threat alerts” are simply ignored or ridiculed.
Ground airport security (from National Guard deployment to banning of sharp instruments) should be abandoned as useless.
All cargo containers should be bar-coded, uplinked to a satellite, and downlinked to a database, to prevent the shipping of biological, chemical, or nuclear weapons (only 2% of containers are inspected now).
All airplane luggage should be screened for explosives and electronically matched to a passenger (not done now).
Every citizen over six years-old should be given a new “US/ID card” to start a lifelong database of associations and actions that could speed people through airports, landmarks, or government buildings without incident.
Although highly controversial and politically difficult, Cherkasky says that this plan can and should be implemented by our government. Having an effective national security system that preserves our culture and respect for human rights can minimize the danger of a catastrophic terrorist onslaught.
In addition, he outlines a plan on how individual Americans can be safe, from how to prepare and maintain a disaster supply kit for every family member, including pets, having a contingency plan regarding a family meeting place, and what to do if there is a chemical or biological attack. Cherkasky also offers rule-of-thumb tips regarding home safety, traveling abroad, and corporate security. He says, “Although there is no such thing as perfect security, there are ways we can address the threats we face on a personal, corporate and national level.” In FOREWARNED he gives every citizen the guidance they need to ensure their future safety.
Michael Cherkasky is President and CEO of Kroll Inc., the renowned security firm with seventy offices in eighteen countries. An expert on intelligence, Cherkasky supervised the prosecutors assigned to the Joint Terrorist Task Force after the World Trade Center bombing in 1993. Cherkasky knows government officials around the world and has worked with former members of the CIA, FBI, Israeli Mossad, British MI-5 and M1-6, Hong Kong police, and other security services that are experts on terrorism. He currently oversees the court-mandated reform of the Los Angeles Police Department.
Alex Prud’homme is a nationally-recognized journalist who has written on business, crime, politics, and culture for The New York Times, The New Yorker, Time, Vanity Fair, and other publications.
FOREWARNED: Why the Government is Failing to Protect Usand What We Must Do to Protect Ourselves
Michael Cherkasky with Alex Prud’homme
Ballantine Books; Hardcover; Non-Fiction
On-sale February 18, 2003
$24.95 U.S.; 0-345-46168-1