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What should the federal government share with the city, and how can this information be controlled?

A suicide bomber has detonated his incendiary device on the Pink Line of the “El” in Chicago, IL. The emergency response teams have quickly extinguished the fire and have begun to treat the wounded. The explosion took place at 5 p.m. on a busy Thursday afternoon. The initial estimates are that 14 people have been killed and 67 wounded. There is also significant infrastructure damage to the Ashland station, impeding traffic on the Green and Pink lines as well as to and from the Illinois Medical District. Al-Shabaab, a terrorist group from Somalia, has claimed responsibility in response to the U.S. Navy’s killing of Somali pirates. Al-Shabaab warns that 2 more explosions will occur somewhere in other major U.S. cities. Their rationale is that three pirates were killed, and therefore three explosions will occur.

As can be expected, the public across the U.S. is in a panic. You are the public relations director for the Deputy Director of Homeland Security. He has asked you to develop a comprehensive white paper explaining the intervention options that the state and federal government can exercise to alleviate public fear and anxiety. He wants to make sure that you anticipate economic impacts at the local, state, and federal levels; use historical incidents if necessary. Your paper will be the basis for an upcoming DHS press conference in which the Deputy Director will attempt to assuage the public’s fear.

Assignment Guidelines

  • Address the following in 1,250–1,500 words:
    • Provide a brief summary of the event.
    • What psychological impacts will most likely be present
      • at the local level? Explain
      • at the national level? Explain.
    • What could be the social impacts? Explain.
      • Consider that the attack has significantly affected a major form of public transit for a major city.
    • What could be the economic impacts? Explain.
      • Consider consumer confidence and impacts to businesses.
    • How would the government respond to the attack? Explain.
      • How would the government address the psychological, social, and economic impacts? Explain.
        • Consider immediate, short-term, and long-term impacts.

Here is the outline that I submitted for this assignment. Please follow if possible, and feel free to add if necessary. 

  1.        Event Summary
  2.   The rapid-transit system in Chicago, IL has been affectionately nicknamed the “L”. This name refers to the whole system of elevated subway systems that are segmented. In this scenario, a suicide bomber detonates and incendiary device on the “L” at the Pink Line segment. The explosion occurred around 5 p.m. on a busy Thursday afternoon for a segment that generally transports approximately 13,000 people daily. An estimated 14 people have been killed and 67 are wounded. The damage to the infrastructure has rendered the Green and Pink segments unusable. Somalian terrorist Group Al-Shabaab has publicly claimed responsibility for the attack as retaliation for the killing of three Somali pirates by the U.S. Navy. Al-Shabaab has further threatened that 2 more explosions are going to occur in other major cities in the U.S. cities.
  3.        Overall Psychological Impacts
  4.   Psychological impact on local level
  5. What is PTSD?
  6.   Will terrorism eventually become and accepted behavior as a coping mechanism?
  7. Psychological impact on national level

III.            Social Impacts of terrorist act

  1.   How does an act of terrorism affect public transportation?
  2.        Economic Impacts of terrorist act
  3.   How does an act of terrorism affect businesses?
  4. How are consumers affected after an act of terrorism?
  5.        Government Response
  6.   How would the government handle the psychological impact?
  7. How would the government handle the social impact?
  8.   How would the government handle the economic impact?
  9. Are the implemented changes designed to be a short-term or long-term fix?
  10.   How can the government respond effectively immediately after an attack?
  11.        Conclusion
  12.   Summate how all of these things affect the targeted area and the way the government handled the situation.

VII.            References

Committee on Homeland Security. (n.d.). Preparedness for and response to terrorist attacks and natural disasters. Retrieved from website:

Levav, Itzhak. (2006). Terrorism and its effects on mental health. World Psychiatry 5(1): 35-36.

Taylor, Eric R. (December 27, 2005). The government’s response to terrorism. An evaluation. Retrieved from website:

Wessely, Simon. (2003). War and the mind: Psychopathology or suffering? Retrieved from website:

Assignment #2

You are a research analyst for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). The department has received credible intelligence from the NSA, FBI, and Department of Defense that Al Qaeda is planning a biological attack using smallpox against Los Angeles, CA. Although the dispersal method is unknown, it is believed the most likely method will be airborne, through a populated shopping mall’s ventilation system. The lax security at these locations, coupled with a wide social and economic population sampling, will make identifying victims and stopping the spread of the disease difficult. The intelligence indicates that the attack is scheduled to occur within 7–10 days.

Your department has been tasked with reviewing historical incidents of smallpox, including academic assessments of its use as a biological agent for terrorism. Use the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s smallpox Web site as a guide to available resources and current planning (CDC Smallpox Information). With these tools, develop a communication plan that addresses the following:

Assignment Guidelines

  • Revise and amend your Week 4 Key Assignment by adding what you learned in the Discussion Board posts following the task, as well as taking into consideration your instructor’s comments.
  • Address the following with regard to the above information, and add your responses to your Key Assignment final draft:
    • Provide an overview of the threat (disease characteristics).
    • How can mass hysteria be prevented within the population?
    • What should the federal government share with the state, and can this information be controlled?
    • What should the federal government share with the city, and how can this information be controlled?
    • What should the federal government share with the nation?
    • When should information be disseminated to each recipient (state, city, and nation)?
    • What should be the characteristics of this information’s release to the public (consider medium, frequency, and timeliness)?

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