APD REVIEW | Shooting shatters American dreams of homeland security

BY APDJun 16,2017 at 14:56


By APD writer Wang Peng

As FOX New reports, in Virginia Wednesday morning, Steve Scalise, the House Majority Whip of Republican Party (G. O. P.) was shot and multiple congressional aides due to an attack launched by a gunman with a rifle at a GOP baseball practice. The incident occurred at Simpson Field in Alexandria, about 10 miles from Washington D.C.

Steve Scalise at the US Capitol in Washington DC on 1 August 2014.

Steve Scalise at the US Capitol in Washington DC on 1 August 2014.

The local police chief confirmed that Scalise was in stable condition while five other people were “transported medically” from the scene. However, the total number of people who had been shot and injured was still unclear. As the local officials said the gunman was shot by U.S. Capitol Police, apprehended and taken to the hospital. Finally, the gunman was killed.

In the recent months, there are an increasing number of terrorist attacks in European cities, such as London, Paris, Manchester and so forth.

It seems that due to the 16 years of great improvement of homeland security, and also partially the guard of Atlantic Ocean, America is immune from the Middle East oriented terrorist attacks. In these 16 years, the American Department of Homeland Security (DHS) along with other intelligence and security agencies have thoroughly updated their outdated information systems and enhanced the network of overseas intelligence in order to keep the enemies out of the gate of the country.

Steve Scalise during a March 7, 2017 meeting with President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington, D.C.

Steve Scalise during a March 7, 2017 meeting with President Donald Trump at the White House in Washington, D.C.

What is more, ever since the era of George W. Bush Administration, American citizens have pay a lot of their cherished right of privacy as the unavoidable cost to improve the national security verification system everywhere in the U.S., from airports to subways, from customhouse to supermarkets.

It is safe to say that the U.S. has made every effort and at all costs to protect Americans from external threat. Decision makers in Washington are pragmatic enough that they could sacrifice American Hegemon’s international reputation and strategic credibility.

For example, at the peak of Syrian refugees crisis, when all the world were worrying about the fate of three-year-old Syrian little boy and America’s European allies opened the gate of EU to welcome those poor guys, Barack Obama, the former American President, rejected tens of thousands of refugee applications emphatically on the grounds of homeland security.

No doubt, his decision was blamed by the rest of the world. However, in his view (and also many Americans), the situation has been worth it. I am sure, Trump, who designed the Great Wall against Mexican illegal immigrants will highly praise this decision of Obama.

Frankly speaking, thanks to all the efforts above, the security of America has been improved a lot. However, the shot in Virginia this morning shattered the American dream of homeland security in an extremely brutal way.

“Without the Capitol Hill police it would have been a massacre,” Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., told Fox News, describing the scene as “sort of a killing field.” How can the ordinary civilians think about their own personal security when they hear the news reports of FOX News above? Will they lose their sense of security totally? The reason is so easy to understand: if the state and security system are unable to protect the top VIPs such as senators and party whips, how can the grassroots expect a better situation for their own?

How can America promote its social safety and homeland security? Perhaps the gun ban is the must measure. The U.S. has achieved great improvements against the threat from outside, but they must be sure that there are tens of millions of vital guns selling, using, and playing at home every day.

Terrorists are not the special local products of the Middle East; they can also be native WASPs, especially the guys with guns or rifles. Nevertheless, since the Republican Trump came to power, the hope of passing gun ban becomes ever slimmer.

Dr. Wang Peng, Research Fellow at Charhar Institute, Lecturer at the China Institute of Fudan University.



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