A day ago, at the dedication ceremony of the National Defense University's Abraham Lincoln Hall, President Obama expressed a renewed need for a civilian national security force (MP3, 74:00 mark; DOD press release, transcript):
America must balance and integrate all elements of our national power. We can not continue to push the burden onto our military alone, or leave dormant any aspect of the arsenal of American capability. That's why my administration is committed to renewing diplomacy as a tool of American power and developing our civilian national security capabilities.
"Our civilian national security capabilities?"
In July of 2008, Jim Lindren noted a couple of peculiar sentences in a Barack Obama speech.
In Barack Obama’s July 2, 2008 speech calling America to national service, Obama proposed “a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded” as our military... This has prompted some in the blogosphere to raise the specter of a huge new domestic paramilitary organization...
[Obama said] "We cannot continue to rely only on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we've set. We've got to have a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded."
Curiously, the official transcript of the speech omitted those last two sentences.
Questions. I've got lots of questions. The DOD's budget is roughly $500 billion. Exactly how would President Obama propose to fund a "civilian national security force" of similar magnitude?
What color uniforms will the civilian national security force wear?
Will they goose-step?
On Febuary 16, I noted a little-publicized Department of Defense Directive (Number 1404.10), which establishes a "DoD Civilian Expeditionary Workforce" and rescinds a prior (and longstanding) directive dealing with the emergency use of civilian personnel.
The new 1404.10 cancels the prior directive of the same designation ("Emergency-Essential (E-E) DoD U.S. Citizen Civilian Employees"), which was issued in 1992 under President Clinton. The 1992 directive specifically deals with overseas deployments of civilian personnel. It does not mention terms like "restoration of order" or "stability operations", prominently featured in the new directive.
In fact, those functions are central to the mission of President Obama's new DoD Civilian Expeditionary Workforce. The 1992 directive mentions the term "overseas" no fewer than 33 times. The 2009 directive does not mention the term "overseas" in the body of the directive even once.
News flash: the Constitution defined a civilian national security force. It was all of us. It was established and protected by the Second Amendment.
Perhaps someone could alert the President. He seems to be unfamiliar with the document.
Linked by: Pundit & Pundette. Thanks!