DOD seeks homeland position

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld is requesting that Congress authorize a new assistant secretary position focused on homeland defense.

Rumsfeld sent a letter this week to Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), chairman of the Armed Services Committee, requesting congressional approval for the establishment of an assistant secretary of Defense for homeland defense, according to Rosanne Hynes, technical director in the DOD's Office of the Special Assistant for Homeland Security.

"This is something that has been discussed for quite some time," and the Bush administration has talked to lawmakers about it, Hynes told FCW after participating in a Sept. 10 panel at the Homeland Security and National Defense Symposium in Atlantic City, N.J.

DOD is actively involved in establishing the Homeland Security Department, including its information technology requirements, Hynes said, which has included frequent meetings with Steve Cooper, senior director of information integration and chief information officer for the Office of Homeland Security.

DOD is looking for opportunities to use its investment in technologies to aid the proposed department, particularly in the areas of intelligence sharing, border security and emergency response, she said.

"The DOD is not pushing any particular technology solutions," Hynes said. "We're letting them know what's available and the [agency] decides what they need."

The symposium sponsors are the Army's Communications-Electronics Command, the Association of the U.S. Army's Fort Monmouth, N.J., chapter, the Association of Old Crows' Garden State chapter, and the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association's Fort Monmouth chapter.

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